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The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning
Year:
2008
Country:
USA
Genre:
Drama, Fantasy, Family, Animation
IMDB rating:
6.5
Director:
Peggy Holmes
Jodi Benson as Ariel
Samuel E. Wright as Sebastian
Jim Cummings as King Triton
Sally Field as Marina Del Ray (voice)
Parker Goris as Flounder
Tara Strong as Adella / Andrina (voice)
Jennifer Hale as Alana
Grey DeLisle as Aquata / Arista (voice)
Jeff Bennett as Benjamin / Guards (voice)
Kari Wahlgren as Attina (voice)
Lorelei Hill Butters as Queen Athena
Kevin Michael Richardson as Cheeks / Ray Ray (voice)
Rob Paulsen as Ink Spot / Swifty (voice)
Maurice LaMarche as Scuttle (voice)
Storyline: The kingdom of Atlantica where music is forbidden, the youngest daughter of King Triton, named Ariel, discovers her love to an underground music club and sets off to a daring adventure to bring restoration of music back to Atlantica.
Type Resolution File Size Codec Bitrate Format
HQ DVD-rip 1024x576 px 1246 Mb h264 2242 Kbps mkv Download
DVD-rip 704x384 px 701 Mb mpeg4 1264 Kbps avi Download
Reviews
Very charming prequel, and rather sad...
This prequel was very enjoyable and charming. I don't think it isn't as good as the classic first film or the series(a childhood favourite of mine), but I do think it is an improvement over the rather average Little Mermaid 2:Return to the Sea. Here, the animation is breathtaking, beautifully fluid and colourful, and fairly true in terms of style to the original. The music, while not as catchy as Alan Menekn's score in the original, is still surprisingly delightful. I Remember was outstanding. And the voice acting is great, Jim Cummings is a worthy replacement of Kenneth Mars as Triton, and Jodi Benson(who also voiced Thumbelina in the Don Bluth movie, Ariel isn't the only role she's done, it's just the role she's best remembered by) is just amazing as Ariel, with a fantastic singing voice that makes me want to sing with her. Remember the song in the series' episode Wish Upon a Starfish, Daring To Dance, amazing song, amazing vocals that reduced me to tears. Marina-marvellously voiced by Sally Field- is an improvement over the bland Morgana, Sebastian is hilarious, there is nice character development and Benjamin is so cute. And the beginning with Ariel's mother brought some poignancy. However, the film is too short, the plot while a wonderful idea is rather so-so in execution and takes time to get going, and Flounder's voice was more teenage than innocent-sounding, the latter suited the character more. Still it is a very charming prequel and well worth the look. 7/10 Bethany Cox
2009-10-07
That's one fine "prequel"
I just picked this movie up today, of course wanting to hear Jodi Benson's gorgeous voice yet again. I had to wait a while before I was able to watch it, but it was worth the wait. It became an awesome movie that tells the "tail" of young Ariel. Personally, I love anything with mermaids and music in it. This movie did justice like the other one, "Return to Sea". Ariel's got six headstrong sisters, how they slept in the same room, it almost appeared as a sea-dormitory, and her father, Triton look so cute when he was younger. Even her mother, Athena, looked much like an older Ariel. Flounder himself was awesome, it was neat how both Ariel and Flounder met. This movie hadn't disappoint me at all, loved just about over %100 of fun, laughter, and music in this fine piece of brilliance. I always wondered what happened to Ariel's mother. But seeing a younger adult version of Triton was even just as unique. I also admired how Sebastian was into music heavily himself. I could watch this movie over and over again! Probably going to watch it in a few minutes, because that's how great it was! Awesome work, Disney! Ten stars is what I gave this comment for, it was brilliantly made, and it's a movie that I also recommend to anyone who's in love with the first two "Little Mermaid" & "Little Mermaid: Return to Sea" movies. As said before, you won't be disappointed...
2008-08-26
Disney's first and only direct-to-DVD prequel almost loses its sense of rhythm
I first heard of this prequel at the time of its release and I was intrigued to find out what had happened before Ariel met Eric. However; upon purchasing this in a triple pack with the first two DVDs, it didn't live up to all of my expectations.

The animation is mostly fluid and the colours are not overly bright like they were in 'The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea,' but some elements look a little too CGI-ish within a 2D animated environment such as the music box, Marina Del Rey's gigantic hook and the statue of Athena. Further to Marina and Athena, I found Marina a flamboyant villain whose purple colour scheme was pleasing to the eye and she was meaner than Morgana but not as sinister as Ursula while Athena reminded me very much of Ariel and I got an insight of how she looked before a pirate ship unfortunately crushed her to death, thus leading Triton to ban music from the kingdom much to Ariel's dismay. Speaking of Ariel, it was cute to see her and her sisters as little girls and their arguments as they grew older reminded me of arguing with my own sister when we were younger. The best argument between Ariel's sisters involves their possessions such as a hairbrush and an eye mask having the letter A on them since all their names begin with that letter. Like 'TLMII:RTTS,' Jodi Benson and Samuel E Wright reprise their roles as Ariel and Sebastian respectively and they sound exactly as they did in the other two films and TV series. Jim Cummings does his best to recreate Triton's voice the same way as the late Kenneth Mars did. As for the music the background music was upbeat, charming and tense while the songs were pretty good, especially 'Jump in the Line' (sounds like a follow-up to 'Under the Sea') and 'I Remember,' although Marina's song 'Just One Mistake' is rather tuneless despite being accompanied by colourful shots of her wigs and outfits. Another shot of Marina I liked was that of her leaning on a rock with the waves crashing behind her (an obvious reference to Ariel's iconic scene at the end of the 'Part of Your World' reprise) and Scuttle flying near her to which she snarls, "Don't touch me!" Aside the CGI-like elements, the other flaws include the story being predictable after Athena's death, Benjamin being too gentle for Marina's assistant and Triton being stricter than he was in the first two films. I also found the shot of Ariel and her sisters being shown in Marina's eyes confusing because I didn't know if she was watching them from her lair or at the underground club, although I can see why her report of the girls in the club to Triton was brief. The scene where Ariel appears to have died towards the end may be confusing for those who haven't seen the other two films because they may think she has actually died but she regains consciousness upon hearing the music box. The moments of Athena's death and Ariel having a flashback of happier times after having retrieved the music box had just the right amount of poignancy.

To conclude, it was an adequate idea of Disney to make a prequel but it wasn't quite as enjoyable as the other two films. 7.5/10 to round up to IMDb's 8/10 rating.
2013-09-05
Worst Sequel Ever! So boring
As a child i loved the first Little Mermaid, as well as the second movie...Until this movie came out.

The WORST things from this movie : Marina Del Ray and Flounder. I really hate the villain in this movie, she reminds me of the Kardashian mother, who can't get her own way and a drag queen. the only character i liked in the movie was Benjamin.

As for Flounder, i really hated him in this movie too. He is so annoying, his voice is cringe worthy and is nothing more of a stalker.

I liked the concept of Athena though, but for the rest of the movie, just no.
2017-08-22
A Great Prequel
This movie was remarkably refreshing and entertaining. The overall appearance of the film was pleasant. I really enjoyed the character design and animation; the film was very true to the original designs portrayed in the first Little Mermaid, and included just enough of modern 3d animation techniques to give additional depth to the 2d creations without spoiling its 2d nature. The story had a solid plot that supported other Little Mermaid films, as well as giving the viewer a touching glimpse of Ariel's mother and a deeper understanding of King Triton's character. The songs, while not as moving or masterful as Menken and Ashman's work on the first Little Mermaid film, were decent and fit in well with the overall theme of the movie. The movie flowed easily between the musical numbers and non-musical moments.

This is definitely one of those "Movie #3"s that rises well above the awful direction (plot, character, music, etc) that most sequels seem to follow.
2008-08-26
Simply Amazing.
The Little Mermaid is one of Disney's most lovable classics, it's one of my personal favorites, so I did want to see the sequel, which was pretty average. Normally most Disney sequels are lame or a waste of time, but it seems as if Disney is finally getting something right because The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning is a very sweet movie and was a nice prequel for Ariel to see what her life was like before she met Prince Eric and we learn a little bit about her family and how she came to meet Flounder. This is definitely a must see for the kids, it has fun music, cute characters, and a charming story that anyone could fall in love with. I liked that they chose a different story rather than continuing her life with Eric, I just like the "they lived happily ever after" and that's it, so this was a nice idea to get to know Ariel's sisters and mother.

In this Disney prequel, we explore Ariel's life before she became human, met Eric, met Ursela. Her father is heart broken after her mother is killed by a ship, he forbids music since it reminds him of her and her beautiful voice. Ariel and her sisters grow up in a very boring world with no music or life at all, but Ariel is thirsty for fun, to spice up her life. She comes along with friends who are also trying to make life a little more fun. But a mermaid named Marina is trying to take over the girls and their lives so she can eventually control the kingdom.

The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning is a fun Disney sequel and was a pleasure to watch. The songs are a lot of fun and the story just charms it's way into your heart. This isn't my favorite Disney sequel, but it was a huge improvement over the second Little Mermaid. I would recommend this for the family or kids, it's a charming film and of course who could resist Sebastian and his fun crazy life under the sea? He, Ariel, and Flounder bring life to this story and I'm sure you'll enjoy it as well.

9/10
2016-07-16
"Need More Ariel Merchandise!"
Giving my judgement on this film is not easy. A lot of people are torn between it being good or bad, and I'm somewhat in the middle. While it's not a horrible flick, it's not terrific either.

Story: King Triton bands music from Atlantica (is that really the best name you could come up with?) because it reminds him of his dead wife and brings him bitterness and grief. But of course Ariel breaks the rules and kinda brings music back to Atlantica.

Let's get the bad stuff out of the way: 1) The whole premise has nothing to do with the first (and better) movie. Sure it's a way to develop Ariel's backstory, but I don't see it developing that much; it just seems like it was randomly put together for a separate story. It was like the writers knew it was about a rebellious teenage mermaid who loves to sing, and they came up with a problem out of the blue. Don't get me wrong, it's an interesting conflict, for the king, but that's where the story should have focused more; it should have not really been about Ariel. Also, they don't bring up the human world at any time in the film, and that was Ariel's focus - she doesn't even show a hint of interest in the film. 2) Flounder, what have they done to you? Yes he's cute, but he's really OBNOXIOUS in this film! He never shuts up, he is always making music sounds when he knows it's forbidden, he talks modern ("Oh yeah, I'm hot", "Torpedo Tube", "Cork Screw", "We love you, Flounder"), he plays spy kids, he's not the "guppy" we know and love, the Little Mermaid TV series gave a better backstory on how he and Ariel became best friends, and he and Ariel have little to no time together alone, pouring their hearts out with each other, or exploring. 3) The villainess is fashionably annoying (literally)! It kinda would have been nice to see if this was how Ursula came to hate Triton, but no, she gets tossed aside for a fashion disaster mermaid with another unnecessary sidekick. 4) It's nice to see the mermaid sisters have character developments, but they're "like totally" valley girl teenage stereotypes. 5) Of all the songs, why did Sebastian have to sing an already popular song instead of come up with another awesome original song as he did "Under the Sea"? 6) The modern talk - wherever it is (includes being sworn in clubs)! 7) Trident is a jerk and isn't loving towards his daughters until the end when Ariel proves he's a jerk. 8) Her mother's death (being crushed by a pirate ship) would have explained why Triton says humans are barbarians and they never bring up the human world once. 9) Kinda a nitpick, but the band instruments are of the human world, they don't even look like they are made of coral. 10) The villain sings. Say what you want on it being a good or bad pair of songs, but the fact that she's singing should be questionable. Music/singing is banned and she's singing. Even if it was for just 4th wall pleasure it doesn't work. 11) The pointless shot replica of when the villainess sings out on a rock and gets splashed. That shot was forced for no other reason but to say that it can't happen in real life. Also that no mermaid visits the surface (aside from the beginning).

Now what's good about it? 1) Triton is awesome again, emotional, though he's also more of a tyrant compared to the first film (which is a flaw). I still love how you see how much he is in pain over the death of his wife (for a few minutes), and there's a scene where he destroys the Catfish Club and it makes me glad to see him use his trident again. The whole story should have centered around him. 2) I won't falter - it's so nice to hear Ariel sing 3) Compared to other Disney sequels, this has some nicer animation - it's not as overwhelming as the first movie. It's computer animation, which is nice to look at, but in all honesty, I think The Little Mermaid looked better in hand drawn animation. 4) Sebastian knows how to make a hot crustacean band - even from already popular songs, and he is still the same protective/responsible guardian of Ariel. 5) The intro is heartwarming and tragic. I actually felt sorry for Triton losing his queen and felt his bitterness. 6) There were some really heartfelt moments.

I kinda like it, but I wish they could have fixed the flaws. I was on the edge of comparing this movie the the awful Fox and the Hound 2 film, but Ariel's Beginning got a better premise. However it is inconsistent with the first movie, the TV series, and is making me tired of seeing Ariel over and over again. I really hate it when Disney Princesses are made into a constantly repeated franchise rather than move on. The TV stories gave us a backstory already, the first movie had nothing to do with banned music, and the sequel moved on with her life. I don't want to see Disney go backwards on her life, but either move forward or just stop altogether.
2014-11-15
Not really really worth it.
This is terrible and it follows in line of terrible Disney sequels and prequels. Don't get me wrong, I maybe a guy but I like the old movie with likable characters, catchy music, and an actually complex villain but did they really need to do this? The only good part I would say about it is the beginning when they show the mermaids having fun when suddenly pirates attack (Captain Hook?). And it shows how Ariel's mom was killed {at least they keep the whole killing mom thing that Disney likes to do} and why Triton banned music but when the movie starts it is all over.

I won't bore you with details so I will just show you the things that tick me off about it. First of all the new villain seems really boring and just seems whiny and annoying and not really threatening. This next complain doesn't tick me off but it's just weird, why does Ariel ask why they don't have music and Triton throws a temper tantrum, wouldn't Ariel kind of guess because of the fact that her mother died? (in case anyone tries to fight against that, wouldn't Trition tell her because of the mother dying? It just doesn't make sense to me.).

The villain doesn't even appear in the next film so why is she in this film? I hate that when they think that we don't catch that. What happens in jail? Does she become a good person, die, what? Now for the moment that angered me the most, when near the end...(Spoilers!!! just in case you didn't see it before.) When Ariel "dies" and it turns out she was just knocked out for a little bit. Was this supposed to be tension? Why would you do that if we know that in the next movie she's all better and singing with fish(and sleeping with the fish?). They do this once in a while in prequels and it irritates me to no end because they think that they are being clever by adding unneeded tension.

So in conclusion this movie is a bomb, granted the voice work is solid and the animation looks nice but the predictable ending and boring plot don't make it worth it. Again I am not feeding the troll because I liked the first film but skip this one and watch the first one.
2010-02-01
Much, much better than I expected
I really despise Disney sequels, normally. With the exception of The Lion King 1 1/2 and Aladdin and the King of Thieves, they are all unoriginal and badly animated, riddled with recycled plots and, in the case of the second Cinderella and Tarzan, given the look and feel of a cartoon miniseries *shudder*. While I do like The Little Mermaid, it was never one of my favourite movies - it's first sequel made me gag, but this one (while definitely not as good as the original) was not only enjoyable, but something that I would honestly watch again with a smile on my face.

The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning is (obviously, from the title) a prequel, telling the story of everybody's favourite red-headed mermaid approximately one year before the events chronicled in the original film. We are told through a sad little prologue about the death of Athena, wife of King Triton and mother to Ariel and her sisters. After her tragic death, Triton is heartbroken and bans music from the kingdom, as it reminds him too much of his queen and only serves to re-open old wounds. In his sorrow, he grows cold and distant from his daughters, leaving them in the care of Marina Del Ray, their governess, and her assistant Benjamin, who is (presumably) a manatee. But Marina wants the crab Sebastian's position as Chief of Staff, and will do anything to get it. Meanwhile, rebellious Ariel is desperate for a bit of fun and games, and when she encounters Flounder, a little fish with an ear for music, she is drawn into a magical world of musical speakeasies and aquatic bands - determined to bring music back to her kingdom and her family, Ariel will stop at nothing to get her melodious fix.

While the plot seems cheesy and juvenile (which it kind of is), Disney manages to pull it off, making it not only cheesy and juvenile, but touching, funny, and moderately smart. Marina Del Ray is a marvel - not encompassing the same sultry, strangely seductive evil as Ursula from the original, she instead channels Morgana from the first sequel, bearing the same manic determination and obvious crazy that makes her endearing as well as hilarious and cruel (while not particularly evil), something Morgana failed to do. She has an awful, garish taste in clothes that makes her fun to watch, and her voice has real personality, which makes her lines fun to hear.

Although not as well animated as the original (it's wonderful animation, don't get me wrong - just not as good), and definitely not as well developed, Ariel's Beginning will have me coming back for more - if you hated Return to the Sea but love the original Little Mermaid, I guarantee you'll like it, if not love it. If nothing else, it's fun to see the characters come alive again.
2009-10-22
A sweet Disney sequel
The Little Mermaid is one of Disney's most lovable classics, it's one of my personal favorites, so I did want to see the sequel, which was pretty average. Normally most Disney sequels are lame or a waste of time, but it seems as if Disney is finally getting something right because The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning is a very sweet movie and was a nice prequel for Ariel to see what her life was like before she met Prince Eric and we learn a little bit about her family and how she came to meet Flounder. This is definitely a must see for the kids, it has fun music, cute characters, and a charming story that anyone could fall in love with. I liked that they chose a different story rather than continuing her life with Eric, I just like the "they lived happily ever after" and that's it, so this was a nice idea to get to know Ariel's sisters and mother.

In this Disney prequel, we explore Ariel's life before she became human, met Eric, met Ursela. Her father is heart broken after her mother is killed by a ship, he forbids music since it reminds him of her and her beautiful voice. Ariel and her sisters grow up in a very boring world with no music or life at all, but Ariel is thirsty for fun, to spice up her life. She comes along with friends who are also trying to make life a little more fun. But a mermaid named Marina is trying to take over the girls and their lives so she can eventually control the kingdom.

The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning is a fun Disney sequel and was a pleasure to watch. The songs are a lot of fun and the story just charms it's way into your heart. This isn't my favorite Disney sequel, but it was a huge improvement over the second Little Mermaid. I would recommend this for the family or kids, it's a charming film and of course who could resist Sebastian and his fun crazy life under the sea? He, Ariel, and Flounder bring life to this story and I'm sure you'll enjoy it as well.

6/10
2008-11-13
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