The 4 Most Underratedly Dark Scenes In Disney History
The name "Disney" is basically synonymous with the phrase "happily ever after." Nearly every Disney movie ends with the main characters defeating the Big Bad, solving their magical problems, and getting married. We're supposed to believe that everything will be fine from that point until the end of time (or at least until the inevitable, unnecessary live-action remake). But much to Disney's chagrin, swelling the music and closing in on the comic relief doesn't necessarily mean "happily ever after." After the credits roll ...
The Supporting Characters In Beauty And The Beast (2017) Are Left Emotionally Scarred
When Belle falls in love with the disgustingly malformed and horrifically rich Beast, she lifts the curse on him, turning him back into a handsome, still fabulously rich prince. This also lifts the curse that was placed on his completely innocent servants, who all return to their original human states, and are reunited with their loved ones ... without any pesky concerns about bestiality or forniphilia.
After The Credits:
The live-action Beauty And The Beast differs from the classic 1991 animation in a number of ways, but one of the most glaring is that the curse causes the townsfolk to forget that there is a prince and a castle. As a result, they also forget about their husbands and wives who work there, and are being punished alongside their asshole boss for no particular reason. Not only that, but the servants have also had their memories wiped: they do not remember life before they became talking candlesticks/wardrobes/teacups. Not as long as they are cursed, anyhow.
All of a sudden, they recall that they have husbands and wives waiting for them in town (and vice versa), but what if there's been some extra-marital romanticizing going on (ahem, Lumiere and Plumette)? It's unclear how a candlestick and a feather duster can go heels-to-Jesus exactly, but what about the humans back in town? It's been almost a decade since the spell was cast, and the townspeople have absolutely no recollection of their spouses having ever existed ... it would be insane to think none of them have married other people.
The moment the castle staff are "saved" from this curse, people wake up to find that their spouses have led entire lives without them; moving on without even realizing they'd moved on. The townspeople are now racked with guilt over the double lives they've been forced into, and the staff will never trust another living soul again. Even worse, the staff are burdened by ten years' worth of memories where they knew no other existence than being an animated household object. That's a heavier burden than a few indiscretions with a feather duster. That's a whole new kind of PTSD.
As humans, all of the supporting characters are going to have to wrestle with the knowledge that they used to be kitchen utensils, or used their heads to clean the inside of Beast's chamber pot (or were Beast's chamber pot) for over a decade.
Baymax's Sensor In Big Hero Six Breeches All The Ethical Privacy Issues From The Dark Knight
When Big Hero Six's Hiro Hamada is tracking down the man who started the fire that killed his big brother, he has one piece of information to follow: the bad guy's vital statistics. Because his big bro's robot, Baymax, scanned him during their first encounter, Hiro has the arsonist's height, sex, blood type, and cholesterol level. But how is Hiro going to use that information to find him? By upgrading Baymax's sensor so that he can scan the entire population of San Fransokyo, at the same time.
It works. They find the bad guy and, after two more fights, they manage to get his ass thrown in jail, save his daughter, and go on to become beloved crime fighters. A happy ending if ever there was one.
After The Credits:
Except that Hiro has inadvertently created the biggest privacy vulnerability the world has ever known. Remember The Dark Knight, when Batman needs to find the Joker and resorts to using every phone in Gotham as a camera? The thing that makes Lucius Fox hand in his resignation? Baymax's device is way more invasive than that. It learns a truly disturbing amount about everyone in that city, without their consent: blood type, allergies, mood, height, weight, sex, and hormone levels.
Sure, Baymax is a friendly robot who only wants to help people -- but what happens when someone who wants to sell your info to health insurance companies just replaces the chip in his chest that "makes Baymax, Baymax," and turns him into a soulless, mindless money-making machine to rival Peter Jackson?
The Humans In WALL-E Face Insurmountable Health Crises
WALL-E shows us what will happen when the Earth can no longer support life: We'll jump into our spaceships, flee this stinkhole, and float about in space doing nothing but watching TV for generations. So basically just like now, but on a spaceship. When cute li'l clean-up robot WALL-E and badass scout-bot EVE discover that Earth is able to support life once more, they and Captain McCrea fight with the ship's autopilot to get humanity back home where they belong. Once back on Earth, they begin the difficult but joyous task of reseeding the planet and making it habitable again.
After The Credits:
During the movie, it's explained to Captain McCrea that the humans have spent so long in low-gravity that they have suffered serious bone loss.
There is at least one weightlifter on the ship bragging about how much mass he's gained.
That's a problem that astronauts face in real life. The only difference is, real astronauts come back to Earth within months. In WALL-E, there are generations of people who have been born and raised on the ship. All you have to do is look at the physical changes in the captains:
"Hey, can I take another one? Got photobombed by the goddamn steering wheel again."
This would be fine (ish) if they decided to stay, but they don't. In the end, the humans return to Earth. That "happy ending," remember?
Here's a quote from real-life astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, a woman who left the planet in peak physical condition, about returning to Earth after being in space for 200 days: "For months, lifting my legs to run or walk was no effort at all. So now every time I take a step and have to lift the full weight of my leg it feels like lifting a tree trunk."
Now imagine if your leg is the same size as an actual tree trunk.
Astronauts' muscles all but disappear the longer they're in space. Our astronauts take weeks or even months to recover from this, but the passengers in WALL-E have never used their muscles, even in lighter gravity. They just sit on their asses all day. This is perfectly illustrated when Captain McCrea gets a standing ovation for standing up.
Speaking of getting things up, where the hell are all these babies coming from?
Now consider the hardest-working muscle in the body (especially during a Pixar movie): the heart. In low gravity, blood isn't constantly being pulled downward, which means it tends to pool in the chest and head. This causes astronauts to have puffy faces, and bulging blood vessels in their necks, but more importantly, it completely screws up your body's earth-tuned circulatory system.
Upon returning to Earth's gravity, astronauts often have circulatory problems and faint from not getting enough blood to their brains. Normal humans get hurt when we faint. The amorphous jellyfish-people in WALL-E would be lucky to survive it. Given the fact that they have almost no bones, and their BMI is off the charts, most of the humans would die within moments of the film's conclusion, be it from atrophy, strokes, or heart attacks. By bringing humanity back to Earth, WALL-E has actually doomed the entire species. Their corpses would presumably then be considered garbage, and he would make some fantastically disturbing trash-towers.
Up's Dog Collars Bring Up Troubling Questions For All Of Human Society
Up is a story of unlikely friendships. Be the end of the movie, not only have widower Carl Fredricksen and scout Russell survived death-defying adventures, they've formed deep, lasting friendships. Both with each other, and with a dog named Dug, who can speak through an advanced electronic collar.
"Please do not castrate me, new owner."
Having escaped the insane hunter trying to kill them, we close on our heroes back in civilization, sharing an ice cream: Carl, Russell, and Dug -- aided by this new, incredible dog-translating technology.
After The Credits:
While the ending of Up is certainly heartwarming for its main characters, it has horrifying implications for animal lovers. The fact that collars can be made to translate Dug's thoughts into human speech means that dogs have far more human-like intelligence than we'd ever dreamed. Do all pets?
That would make veterinary care a hell of a lot easier, albeit louder and more obnoxious. But hey, seen Westworld? That's what happens when people suddenly discover a subservient life form is intelligent and self-aware. We're not saying there would be a bloody canine uprising -- those furry little bastards love us far more than we deserve. But we train and use service dogs: Do they all want that job? What happens if they can tell you, in plain English, that they don't want to be a K9 unit? Do we force them? Is that now slavery? The ethical questions just get more complicated and disturbing the further down the chain we go. Up 2 better be produced by the folks behind Game Of Thrones.
Matt Cowan watches too many -- and thinks too deeply about -- Disney movies than is healthy. He sells T-shirts here.
For more movies that got horrifying after the end, check out 6 Happy Endings That Accidentally Screwed The Movie's Hero and 6 Horrible Aftermaths Implied By Movies With Happy Endings.
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