Friday, 16 July 2010

Encore’s Greatest Voices: #30-#21

The countdown continues as we near the top, I feel slightly bad that so many films have repeat entries. Then again, I can't blame myself because they're that good.

#30: Chris Sarandon in The Nightmare Before Christmas
as Jack Skellington
Forgive me, Mr. Claus. I'm afraid I've made a terrible mess of your holiday.
Though I wouldn’t swear that The Nightmare Before Christmas is unparalleled excellence, it is a thoroughly enjoyable film and Sarandon’s protagonist is a significant portion of that. He is funny and endearing, yet maintaining his oddball status.
#29: Teri Hatcher in Coraline
as The Other Mother (and the Real Mother)
Don't leave me! Don't leave me! I'll die without you!
Teri Hatch…loved her in Lois & Clark, liked her on Desperate Housewives until she turned into the hot mess that is now Susan. She’s not given credit (we don’t really get to see her stretch her legs), but her incarnation of Coraline’s mother and the Other Mother (a.k.a The Beldam) was a brilliant take on a potentially stereotypical villain. Coraline was my favourite animated film last year, and though Fanning’s work as the eponymous heroine was on point it was Hatcher’s layered and terrifying work that stuck with me for weeks after.

#28: Miriam Margolyes in Babe
as Fly
But you're treating them like equals. They're sheep, they're inferior.
I’m sorry I couldn’t get a spot for Babe, but consider this a tribute to all the actors there. Babe is just too sweet for words, and Margolyes no-nonsense Fly is an excellent surrogate mother to the orphan pig. She’s stern, but not unloving and she does so well weighing her dedication to her husband against her that of her husband.
#27: Johnny Depp in Corpse Bride
as Victor Van Dort
Please, there's been a mistake. I'm not dead.
At the moment people seem less than enthused about Depp and Burton, no point in dredging up that argument – but I do love Depp’s work as the reticent would-be groom of the eponymous corpse. It’s voicework that’s sometimes forgotten (very subtle) but I think it’s excellent, nonetheless.
#26: Joan Cusack in Toy Story II
as Jessie
Well aren't you just the sweetest space toy I ever did meet!
Cusack always was the best thing about the Toy Story franchise, for me. Always a brilliant character actress, her take on the spirited cowgirl in the series was a thing of delight. She knew just how to get on our nerves without being overbearing.
#25: Robby Benson in Beauty & the Beast
as The Beast
I thought I told you to come down to dinner!
This is one that’s often forgotten. Beneath the animalistic growl Benson is doing excellent work portraying emotions in the Beast that are bubbling below the surface. His petulance, his nervousness, his ferocity – it’s all done as much through the animation as through the voicework making him just as interesting and as rounded a character as Belle.
#24: Richard Dreyfuss in James & the Giant Peach
as The Centipede
Why don't skeletons play music in church? Because they got no organs.”
James & the Giant Peach features one of the strongest animated ensembles, and Dreyfuss' corny centipede is a big part of that.
#23: Robert Guillaume as The Lion King
as Rafiki
Correction: I *know* your father..”
The Lion King is such an excellent film, when it’s time for laughs talk often turns to Timon and Pumba (admittedly good), but for me it’s always Guillaume’s hilarious Rafiki that does all the heavy lifting. He pops in and out (and in again) for a few short moments, but his voicework takes the film to another level. He is simultaneously annoying, perverse, wise and exasperating. Yes, we know these are animals, but we fee like we know this strange monkey.
#22: Lillias White, La Chanze, Vaneese Y. Thomas, Cheryl Freeman and Roz Ryan in Hercules
As The Muses (Calliope, Terpsichore, Clio, Melpomene and Thalia
…And that’s the Gospel Truth.”
I debated whether or not to single them out, but it didn’t make sense. The Muses are all part of the same entity. Voice by a quintet of Broadway voices they’re responsible for the narration of this underrated piece. From Ryan’s spunky soul sister to White's sophisticated headliner they all work in tandem to create some of the most entertaining Disney characters.

#21: Jonathan Freeman in Aladdin
as Jafar
You're speechless, I see. A fine quality in a wife.”
It’s probably difficult to craft a villain unlike anything we’ve seen, and all Disney villains do have that sombre voice in common. But Freeman does his own things with Jafar. He's slimy and he's almost offensive, but he sure is fun to watch.
Only two more rounds left? Do you have particular fondness for any of these?

#50 - #41
#40 - #31


Simon said...

I loved the muses from Hercules. They were so...museful.

Yeah, that's the word.

Jude said...

Am I one of the few people who actually hates Toy Story 2 ? I still haven't mustered up the courage or the will power to see the third installment.

Luke said...

Love your inclusions of Teri Hatcher and the Muses in here - and yes, you must be the only one. :) I thought Toy Story 2 was brilliant and in some ways better than the first - *gasp!* ... and Chris Sarandon? I always thought it was Danny Elfman, but apparently I need to rewrite my childhood...

Wild Celtic said...

I'm impressed by the sheer wealth of your thoughts on film! How do you do it? When asked to think of things like this I freeze like a deer in headlights. Well done, good choices!

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

simon glad you do.

jude well i don't like toy story much either, though i will say the second installment is the best - for me.

luke teri's work is often forgotten. and that movie came out last year. sheesh.

wild celtic aaaw. you're too sweet (and wrong - not much wealth here - but i'll take compliments however i can get them.)