Disney Plus have released their latest live-action adaptation of a classic Disney animated film. This time, Pinocchio has been transformed and redone for a modern audience with a cast including Tom Hanks, Keegan Michael-Key, and Luke Evans. From new characters to old beloved moments, the film is filled with a mixture of the old and the new.
Whether Disney fans love every change the company made in the new film, there are a number of significant differences between the live-action film and the original cartoon classic.
6/6 Sad Geppetto
Geppetto was an awful lot happy and more content in his motivations for building Pinocchio in the 1940 edition of the story. In the 2022 remake, Tom Hanks stars as Geppetto and briefly mentions his dead son, whom he built Pinocchio to look alike. This is a sad bit of backstory that was included for his character, and which felt revisited several times over the course of the film as Geppetto acted much more like a father to Pinocchio than in the original.
Normally it would be useful to add this kind of emotional backstory to the film, but seeing as it doesn’t add much to the main plot, it feels like a damp squib of an addition. Fortunately, Tom Hanks was able to handle the change with some aplomb, making the audience feel sorry for his loss.
5/6 The Comedic Style
There were some unexpected moments of comedy and levity throughout the live-action remake that came unexpected. The style of the 1940 film was fairly dry, and while it was not without wit and charm, the live-action remake seems to have made more of a conscious effort to add jokes wherever possible.
One particularly strange moment was when Pinocchio tried to explain as he came toward Geppetto all the adventures he’d had since last seeing him, and Geppetto exclaimed in surprise at all of this happening in just one night. Tom Hanks’ Italian accent slipped during this moment and made it all the more comical, but many other moments of humor didn’t turn out quite as well as this one.
The most notable addition to the film is a new major side character in the form of Fabiana and her puppet. While Pinocchio is not a character many fans expected to have a love interest, Fabiana’s puppet was seemingly meant to have chemistry with the long-nosed protagonist, but it never came to much in the plot. Her character didn’t even get him out of the Stromboli cage locked him in.
which the new show she put together herself seemingly did, or whether it was Disney’s intention to give Pinocchio a potential love interest, is unknown. The character was interesting but completely unrelated to any characters found in the original film though, and her appearance was a significant change.Whether this character was there more to tease a potential sequel,
3/6 The Blue Fairy
Not only was there a change to the amount of the blue fairy seen in the film, as she only appears in one scenebut she is also the one to sing “When You Wish Upon A Star” in the remake, as opposed to the original where Geppetto was the one to sing the famous tune.
Cynthia Erivo managed to put on an incredible rendition of the song, and the scene was a great early one in the film. It was a surprise that the blue fairy never appeared again, both because she appeared later in the 1940 film and because Erivo was excellent in the role and had high billing in the film.
2/6 The Coachman & Pleasure Island
Luke Evans version of the villainous Coachman in the film had some surprises in store as well. Several changes from the original version included him snatching Pinocchio up from the side of the road, the new song which was included in the remake, and what happened when the children arrived at Pleasure Island.
the smashing of the clocks was an insanely specific detail added specifically for Pinocchio’s benefit. Additionally, the root beer and the excitement that the children had for it was a strange choice. This was included instead of the smoking and alcohol consumption in the original film but was a baffling replacement that felt odd.While some of the things that the children were allowed to run around and do on Pleasure Island made sense,
1/6 Monstro & The Ending
Some of the most significant changes between the two films were in the final act. While Geppetto had already been swallowed by Monstro when Pinocchio found him again, in the remake they are swallowed together, having just found one another. Additionally, it doesn’t take them more than a minute or two in the remake to figure out an escape plan. Pinocchio’s powers with his legs working as a motor for a boat were obviously added in the live-action adaptation.
Finally, the fact that Pinocchio is not transformed (or at least, his fate was left ambiguous) into a real boy is a major switch that tried to make a point about being happy with who you are. This change was one of the most significant and garnered a great deal of controversy among fans. They additionally were shocked at the lack of Pinocchio’s nose growing in the film, as it only occurs in one scene and is actually a benefit to him, he is never given a reason not to continue lying.