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The Black Cauldron
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The Black Cauldron

1985
Drama
Family/Kids
1h 20m
A young boy and a bunch of misfit friends embark on a quest to find a dark magic item of ultimate power before a diaboical tyrant can. (imdb)
Your probable score
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The Black Cauldron

1985
Drama
Family/Kids
1h 20m
Your probable score
Avg Percentile 40.41% from 760 total ratings

Ratings & Reviews

(760)
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Rated 20 Nov 2019
70
53rd
It’s probably an f bomb or a disgusting beheading away from being a true classic. The Horned King looks so awesome for Disney and he is shackled by Disney. Hi I’m about to present my thesis on R rated Disney children’s movies:
Rated 28 Mar 2016
75
30th
Strips the fantastic Chronicles of Prydain books of their charm, pathos, and wit to create a somber, awkward, lifeless, and generally unpleasant fantasy movie. The dialogue is stilted, the pacing uneven, the characters two-dimensional, and the animation average at best. Ambitious, perhaps, but still a misfire.
Rated 07 May 2014
70
65th
You know, for kids! The darkness of this fantasy adventure must have been a difficult sell but this, the most underrated and unfairly overlooked Disney Animated Classic, has a lot going for it: charm, impressive animation (including some nice uses of POV shots) and a good sense of fun. The second half has it's fair share of problems, too... but I'll allow it.
Rated 29 Aug 2007
25
22nd
This was supposed to be the ruturn of Classic Disney Animation. It wasn't. They settled on this when rights to LORD OF THE RINGS fell through; their loose adaptation of the Alexander's book brings the story closer to Tolkein and shows us how they might have handled RINGS -- lifelessly. Some evokative scenes as the black army marches, but not much more. John Byner (otherwise a danged funny guy) is merely annoying as the witch king's servant.
Rated 23 Jun 2012
63
17th
THE BLACK CAULDRON is fascinating in its shortcomings; an expensive and ambitious fantasy that was subjected to studio interference and, one way or another, ended up as something of a mess. The animation--character and background--is superb, Elmer Bernstein's score is strong, and the voice acting is decent. But the story is a disjointed mess, with a promising villain ruined by his irritating and totally unfunny hench-troll; there is, in fact, an excess of comic relief, and not enough wonder.
Rated 12 May 2015
3
5th
A terribly forgettable entry in the Disney canon, and the face of the studio's "Dark Age" for good reason. Save for a notably dark villain and visuals for the time, there's little else here worth revisiting.
Rated 10 Feb 2015
65
42nd
This movie could have been an all-time great, but it has some MAJOR problems bringing it down. The Horned King is a sinister villain who does absolutely nothing but enter rooms. There's no good music to speak of (the score is annoying at best), which is kind of a prerequisite for Disney. Some charming characters and some nice, dark tone do salvage it somewhat, but it could have been so much better. I would love to see it with all of those infamous "missing" cut scenes.
Rated 10 Mar 2014
10
1st
This film is torture. Absolute torture. The protagonists are aggressively unlikable, the plot is astoundingly cliche, the animation is hideous with the constant weird expressions and gestures, and the narrative choices made in the film are confounding. The 10 points are entirely for John Hurt's performance - the Horned King is the only thing worth watching in this film, and I would strongly caution people NOT to watch it. (Also I would gladly kill the Gurgi and not feel any remorse for it.)
Rated 01 Aug 2012
64
34th
In spite of widescreen and good animation, this movie manages to make what is supposedly a large fantasy universe feel incredibly small. The Horned King is one of the coolest villains in Disney canon, but he is very unceremoniously dispatched. He is balanced by the lead Taran, who acts like the lovechild of Ariel and young King Arthur. Not as annoying as the former, and with hints of an arc, but not quite as endearing as the latter. The movie isn't as bad as it's reputation, but not a must-see.
Rated 13 Jun 2012
70
55th
There hasn't really been any kind of American hand-drawn animated film quite like it (at least until Don Bluth is able to get Dragon's Lair up and running). An 80s medieval fantasy in Disney dressing, lavishly animated, wonderfully scored (Elmer Bernstein), and full of incredible (and scary!) imagery. Very much of a product of its time in the best possible way. I would love to see Disney take another big swing like this again someday on something truly dark and daring.
Rated 29 Jun 2011
40
16th
and this was my favorite book series
Rated 25 Jan 2016
14
4th
Lock this one in the vault forever.
Rated 01 May 2015
5
57th
(2014-15 Disneython #19:) Disney does high fantasy. It's better than Ralph Bakshi's laughable Lord of the Rings, but still not that great. The biggest problem is that defeating the Horned King ultimately looks easy as hell, and unlike other epic fantasy villains (or, hell, even Disney's own Jafar) I'm not remotely convinced that this guy is a threat to the world. The movie has the aesthetics and themes of high fantasy but lacks the scale.
Rated 17 Jan 2012
76
47th
Messy storytelling, but it's good enough to make the story and characters compelling, and that's what I ask for in an adventure film. There are some impressive visual moments and it's all pretty fun.
Rated 27 Sep 2011
51
18th
You can't put a magical pig in a movie without some kind of explanation.
Rated 19 Nov 2019
45
10th
The story of Disney shunning The Black Cauldron is far more interesting than the movie itself. Some of the darker imagery ok but most of the brief running time drags. Gurgi has to be one of the more annoying characters to grace Disney screens.
Rated 27 Jul 2010
60
35th
The computer game was better than the movie.
Rated 14 Aug 2007
77
71st
Not bad, especially compared to Disney's other run-of-the-mill stuff.
Rated 22 Aug 2008
88
40th
A hidden Disney treasure. It's so dark that not as many people know about it as much as other Disney movies. Good stuff.
Rated 28 Aug 2008
36
2nd
Disney fail. Boring and verrrrrry loose adaptation of the beloved source material.
Rated 18 Sep 2018
68
37th
The Black Cauldron is admirable for attempting to break the Disney tradition. A fine example of early expectation subversion for the brand. However it diverges from the novels and comes to an end a little to quickly. John Hurt is fantastic and visuals are wondrous. So take the good with the bad.
Rated 22 Aug 2022
70
34th
I didn't like this as much as I thought I would
Rated 16 Aug 2022
51
30th
This is a frustrating movie, because it has absolutely stunning parts in the middle of bland genericness. I've heard a lot about how the original book was far more distinctive, and I believe it; bits and pieces of that made it thru, but overall, I can see why this isn't well-remembered.
Rated 20 Jan 2022
22
13th
Overhyped as "the one scary Disney film", there are some Bakshi-style skeletons and dragons and that's it. What's more interesting to me is that Andy Serkis' Gollum sounds EXACTLY like the character of Gurgi, to the point that you have to believe he sat down and watched this taking notes at some point.
Rated 22 May 2021
100
86th
105/100 https://esperwatchesfilms.tumblr.com/post/651863445063581696/the-black-cauldron-1985
Rated 21 Nov 2016
58
12th
I didn't like this one when I was little because it was way too dark. Would be interesting to rewatch
Rated 04 Mar 2018
90
75th
The most underrated Disney film. The inventiveness of its animation can be compared to the very finest from Disney.
Rated 22 Feb 2020
40
11th
Not enjoyable for adults. I doubt it will be for children though.
Rated 06 Dec 2020
35
55th
I liked using this movie to be a smug niche know-it-all as a child when people asked my favorite Disney rather than simply answering the question honestly, aka childhood me was a hipster before it was hip
Rated 08 Oct 2020
4
16th
Alas, the film which Disney pretty much swept under the rug isn't very good. It's refreshingly dark, and John Hurt cuts a dash as the Horned King, but the sidekick characters are tedious (even by Disney princess standards, Eilonwy is annoyingly perky, and Gurgi set my teeth on edge). And the plot is as generic as a fantasy quest gets - the kind of yarn where the safest place to hide the magic pig is a place called The Forbidden Forest.
Rated 02 Oct 2020
45
27th
Some fine animation, and a rather dark violent tone, is no match for a bunch of lousy characters working slowly through an uneven script.
Rated 08 Dec 2018
35
13th
Trash, there is a reason this one is not very well known
Rated 01 Jun 2019
85
87th
Evengodsfearedking-lockedinblackcauldron-soughtcuzcansummonarmy+fablelol+hornedkingwantit+pigpowercanfinditlol+golemlol+sorushedlol+princesswithfairyhelpsescape+magicsword+bard+golemback+3witchesforit-hastotradesword+havetoclimbinwillingly/nevercomeoutalive+makearmy+golemjumpsin+kingsuckedinlol+witchestrytotakeitbacklollikeplanned-oneoffersswordbuthewantsgoleminstead+golemmakesthemkisslol june 2019 83. jan 2021 85 cuz fable lol and ye dips and kinda falls off
Rated 05 Sep 2020
68
35th
This enjoyable fantasy adventure is much darker and scarier than usual for Disney.
Rated 13 Aug 2012
65
76th
Trippy
Rated 04 Jul 2013
95
96th
This movie honestly has such a special place in my heart. Its a movie for everybody, with both serious, scary characters along with silly and funny sidekicks. The Black Cauldron is an extremely underrated Disney masterpiece.
Rated 08 Jan 2013
35
9th
A movie that, in my childhood, was somewhat entertaining. But it has not held up.
Rated 22 Jun 2007
77
51st
Disney tries to make one of those 'dark' 80s movies and doesn't succeed, but it's more ashamed of this movie than need be. It's strictly okay. Not deep fare, not fantastic characters, and the ending's a bit weak.
Rated 19 May 2012
72
35th
Reminds us what real heroes are made of. Still, there's ALOT that needs improving.
Rated 02 Apr 2012
75
30th
Bottom list Disney.
Rated 20 Apr 2011
69
57th
Sometimes quite scary! If I get kids, I will show them this movie so they will be scared shitless. The narration was sometimes annoying though, but that yellow elf thing was pretty cool. And the Horned King too
Rated 05 Feb 2011
3
32nd
Bland as fuck.
Rated 08 Jan 2011
70
55th
The scariest Disney, which automatically makes it more interesting in my book. Wish I'd seen this as a kid, it would've rocked my socks off. Some of the characters are a bit annoying and the pacing is uneven, but it's definitely a fun watch. Some cool effects, wonderful backgrounds, and a cliche-filled but cute heroes journey tale.
Rated 06 Oct 2010
83
51st
Am I the only one who found a great deal of Lord of the Rings influence? I mean it's everywhere. I don't know whether this is the case in the books, but despite this in the film I find it to be a pretty solid entry in Disney's canon. It being their darkest effort makes it fairly refreshing.
Rated 26 Jul 2010
88
30th
Not as grand as a typical Disney effort, but it does have a good story and a great villain.
Rated 16 Jul 2009
60
8th
Some gorgeous and genuinely scary bits (the skeleton warriors - brr!) can't save this from being largely crap.
Rated 15 Nov 2008
88
85th
It's worth the 88 just on a nostalgia basis. It's really a great flick, but when so much is crammed into the short time frame of a disney, it lacks a full plot.
Rated 29 Oct 2007
56
44th
Fun and entertaining. A little thin/short.
Rated 14 Aug 2007
65
47th
I remember enojying it (and the computer game) when I was a young lad.
Rated 07 Aug 2007
45
16th
The book is one of my favorites... so it's unlikely a movie will ever do it justice...
Rated 16 Jul 2007
83
31st
I have to say that I haven't seen this in a long time. But I remember it being okay.

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