The Ultimate Walt Disney Company Performances Bracket -- Round Four, Day One
I've been dreaming of a true love's kiss...
My friends, can you sense it? Can you taste it? We’re getting so, so very close to the end of the Ultimate Walt Disney Company Performances bracket. We started with 256 seeds, spread out among the vast and sundry performances from live actors and voice actors, from Disney and Marvel and Pixar (oh my), and now we’re down to just 32.
If the choices seemed tough before, then, you know that the choices are going to get a lot more difficult now. And while I could spend time up here with a long-winded preamble, it’s long-winded enough already. This is the last round with four matchups per day, so let’s dive right in!
(16) Pat Carroll, The Little Mermaid vs. (9) Harrison Ford, The Empire Strikes Back: I was recently having a spirited debate with a younger family member about Han Solo the character and how hard it is to replicate Harrison Ford’s talent. (I was specifically mystified at how many people enjoy Solo: A Star Wars Story, a film that was misbegotten in concept and no better in execution. I like Alden Ehrenreich as a performer, and for all I know, the version that Phil Lord and Chris Miller were going to direct would have been better than what we got. But what we got is pretty bad, I think.)
And yet, the family member with whom I was chatting pointed out that Harrison Ford’s big secret is how little of a shit he gave. And that’s true (and what is missing from the prequel trilogy — someone who points out how silly all this Force shit is). But. You could argue that Ford’s propensity to seem less invested in the world of Star Wars begins in the 1980 sequel, and in this specific matchup, I will say that element means I’m voting against him. Yes, in this battle, I will give the vote to Pat Carroll, whose energy and vitality are immense as Ursula herself.
What say you?
(4) Albert Brooks, Finding Nemo vs. (5) Tim Curry, Muppet Treasure Island: Two very talented men are going into the thunderdome here, and if you know me or my preferences, you probably know that I am voting for Tim Curry. Yes, Albert Brooks is brilliant as Marlin. Yes, Finding Nemo is a brilliant film. It is a better film than Muppet Treasure Island. But exuberance, thy name is Curry. I have already mentioned in this newsletter that I think he’s better in his role and film than Michael Caine in his Muppet movie, so…yes, I give this one to Long John Silver.
How about you?
(2) Amy Adams, Enchanted vs. (7) Robert Downey, Jr., Iron Man: If I had to guess, I would guess that Tony Stark himself will get this vote. Robert Downey, Jr. is why the Marvel Cinematic Universe has lived on so long (certainly through the first phase of the MCU); his innate charm and wit defined the franchise as a whole. But I will give this one to Amy Adams, who should have an Oscar already (did you know she inexplicably does not have one yet? The Academy is dumb.) and should specifically have an Oscar for playing Giselle. Great performances, both, but it’s gotta be Giselle.
(35) Sterling Holloway, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh vs. (11) Peter O’Toole, Ratatouille: Not a particularly tough choice, in my opinion. Peter O’Toole was indeed amazing as Anton Ego, but it’s a small role, and Winnie the Pooh is Winnie the Pooh. I vote for Holloway.