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With: (voices) Wayne Allwine, Tony Anselmo, Bill Farmer, Russi Taylor, Tress MacNeille, Jim Cummings
Written by: David M. Evans, Evan Spiliotopoulos
Directed by: Donovan Cook
MPAA Rating: G
Running Time: 68
Date: 03/19/2013

The Three Musketeers (2004)

2 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

The Mouse That Sword

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Could The Three Musketeers be some kind of historical event? It's the first feature length film to star Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Goofy in 60 years, since The Three Caballeros (1945), though since these characters only appeared in one segment of that film, it could be argued that The Three Musketeers is their first, period. Unfortunately, the result is only so-so. It combines decades-old plot devices and even older jokes with more media-savvy jokes for today's kids. One funny scene has a bad guy swiping at Mickey's uniform with his sword; when Mickey's clothes fall off, he's wearing only his old-time uniform of red shorts with big yellow buttons. He looks down and quickly does a little pose for us.

Mickey, Goofy and Donald are three witless servants who have dreamed of being musketeers since they were kids together. But they can't even handle their menial tasks of cleaning and scrubbing. Fortunately for them, the evil Captain Pete has a plan to kidnap Princess Minnie, and so he assigns the ineffectual trio to "guard" her, so as to make the kidnapping go smoothly. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that the heroes will save the day.

The Three Musketeers has two things going for it: its brief, painless length of 68 minutes, and a "Greek Chorus" character. A turtle breaks into the action from time to time singing neat little songs based on famous classical pieces. Voice talents Wayne Allwine (Mickey), Tony Anselmo (Donald) and Bill Farmer (Goofy) do their best to replicate the famous voices from the past, and it's a good enough job that we eventually forget that we're listening to imitators and not the real deal. Directed by Donovan Cook, the action is smooth and clean, even though everything winds up at the predictable third act standoff at an opera, no less. The film loses its way in all the chaos. Nonetheless, this straight-to-video film is worth a look, especially for parents who grew up on Disney and are now wondering where all the good films have gone. The disc comes with plenty of kid-friendly bonus material, plus a cast commentary, deleted scenes and more.

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