UltimateDisney.com's Top 30 Live Action Disney Movies Countdown
4. Swiss Family Robinson (1960)

This classic Disney live action film is a must for the Disney fan. It has adventure, action, comedy, and a great story. The Robinson family is ship wrecked off an island in the south seas after the crew abandons them. Using what they can off the ship, and animals they find on the island, they build a large tree house and set up housekeeping. It was filmed on location and that greatly enhances the beauty of the film, making it more believable. It is a stunning film to watch and holds up well 40 years later. It was released on DVD in its original aspect ratio, 2.35:1 and in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. It appears that Disney has spent the time to restore this film to its original splendor. It is a shame that more of their films are not treated as well. This is a film that will hold the interest of all generations.

There are many extra features on disc two that the viewer will enjoy. There are all well done, especially the documentary filmed during the making of the film, "Adventure in the Making". Some of the other special features include a conversation with James MacArthur, Pirates!, Lost Treasures-Swiss Family Treehouse, Production Archives and a 1960 Disney Studio Album.

Problems: In the fight with the pirates, even though bombs are exploding, guns are being fired and logs and rocks are hitting the pirates, no one dies or even appears to be injured. No wonder the Robinson family had such trouble winning the fight. It was easy to tell that the logs were made of rubber since they bent when rolling over someone. And there appears to be only one of each species of animal. These problems are minor when viewing the film and might not be notice the first couple of viewings. This is a DVD that should be in every collection of Disney films.

-George Laboissonniere

I remember the first time I saw Swiss Family Robinson -- it was in the early 90s when my father was convinced that LaserDiscs were going to be the next big thing, so he bought a player and so became a regular customer at a store called QED Laser which rented out the discs. Now, because we were young my father would leave me and my sisters in the car while he went inside to look for a movie. He'd hold up the big cardboard cases for our approval or dismissal. One time he came up with Swiss Family Robinson. I'd never seen it. I gave it the thumbs up.

What a thrill ride. It's a textbook adventure fantasy, made accessible to just about everybody because it encompasses so many dynamics - the care-free children, the proud family patriarch, the sentimental mother. Building the ultimate treehouse and fighting off deadly pirates with a fantastic assortment of booby traps and coconut grenades it a hoot as well. For all those kids who dreamed of great adventure in far-off, exotic locales, Swiss Family Robinson scores big.

-George Heidkamp

Swiss Family Robinson is one of the greatest adventure movies of all-time. It has a bit of everything - a shipwreck, pirates, tropical island, exotic animals, primitive gadgets, romance, and of course the fantastic treehouse. The treehouse is every kid's dream come true. If only all of our houses were that much fun. One of the most fun aspects of the movie is the fight against the pirates where all kinds of weapons and traps are improvised using the resources of the island. This is a great movie for all ages, but it especially captivates children because of things like the treehouse and the exotic animals.

-Jim Miller

Swiss Family Robinson represents the life I wanted as a kid, and the life part of me still does want. I really identified with the family in the film - their relationships with each other and how they interacted really reminded me of my own family. That made it even easier to envision myself with my parents, brother, and sisters, all together on a remote island.

Having wild animals as pets, swinging from vine to vine, sliding down a waterfall, brothers taking off on an adventure together, and of course building a huge treehouse was just the stuff my dreams were made of. It inspired me to build my own make-shift treehouse and pirate boobie traps (the latter probably being to my parents' slight dismay)

It was one of those movies that impacted me more than others did, and was a big part of my childhood. I feel its a great film because it just embodies escapism and indulges would-be adventurers.

-Jack Seiley

Swiss Family Robinson, to me, defines Disney family entertainment, which is fitting because it is a story about a family. This movie grabs you from the moment it starts and never lets go until the end; no lulls in this one.

There is something for everyone in the family here. Romance for adults - especially parents - in the form of Mr. & Mrs. Robinson, finding their dream getaway vacation (and making it permanent). Romance for teens and young adults with the 2 elder Robinson sons and their vying for the affections of the lovely Roberta. Fun for children who can relate to Kevin Corcoran, one of Disney's finest child actors over the years. Last but not least, adventure for everyone from the storm at the beginning right up to the climactic and irresistable pirate battle. I always get a belly laugh at the scene where they fall into the tiger pit!

Turn in your mouse ears if you haven't seen this one!

-Geoff Gardner

Swiss Family Robinson is one of the greatest Disney films I have ever seen, if not the greatest. The story is superb, though based rather loosely on the original book. The movie follows the Robinson family after being shipwrecked on an uncharted island. With the young Francis who loves all animals and a girl Roberta who almost splits the elder brothers, Fritz and Ernst, the movie is packed with pirates, adventure, and (of course) animals. The scenery is breath taking, and let's face it, who wouldn't want to be shipwrecked on an island like theirs? This film is one of the most incredible movies I have ever seen, and the two disc Vault Disney DVD exceeded my expectations to the maximum it could have been.

-Captain Hook

DVD Details
The Swiss Family is bestowed with a delightful 2-disc set, filled with hours and hours of extras on the film's production, cast, and crew. Best of all, this adventure is presented in a gloriously restored 2.35:1 print, enhanced for widescreen televisions.
Buy Swiss Family Robinson (2-Disc Vault Disney)
Read the Swiss Family Robinson DVD Review
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