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Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Worst Disneyland 50th Anniversary Souvenir

Disneyland celebrated its 50th anniversary back in July 2005. The official park opening date was July 17, 1955.  We didn't make it down for the official anniversary day but my family and I were fortunate enough to spend a week down at the Disneyland Resort in late July of 2005 getting the opportunity celebrate Disneyland's "Happiest Homecoming on Earth" an event which went on to last for almost 2 years.  There was a large group of us on this particular trip so we booked a 3 bedroom suite (plus an extra room) at the Disneyland Hotel. We had a great time all the way around.

A few days ago, I was going through a box of old DVD's we had stored in a box in the garage, preparing to get rid of a great many of them as we have now moved on to the blu-ray disc generation.  And there it was - Disneyland's "official commemorative edition" DVD celebrating the aforementioned "Happiest Homecoming on Earth".  I hadn't seen this "souvenir" since I played it when we returned from our 2005 trip.  Yes, the must have souvenir from a great trip had only one showing in the Disneyland Traveler household and for good reason.  The commemorative video is awful.  I would sell this thing on eBay but I wouldn't want to rip someone else off the way Disney ripped me (and countless others) off by buying this wretched production.

You see, underneath it all, the "Happiest Homecoming on Earth" commemorative DVD is nothing more that a Disneyland Resort vacation planning video no better than the DVD's Disney Travel will send you free of charge.  In fact, it is worse than many of the free promotional DVD's that we have received from Disney Travel over the years.  

Back in 2005, Disney was showing a fine film in the Opera House starring Steve Martin (and Donald Duck) that lovingly traced some of the 50 year history of Walt's park.  That film still plays today on a small video screen in the lobby of the Opera House in a continual loop as part of the Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln pre-show.  That's the kind of film I was hoping to get with my $25 or $30 DVD purchase back in 2005.  In fact, if they sold a copy of the Steve Martin film, I would bought that one.  Instead, I bought a travel video, a promotional video, really just a half hour infomercial selling the Disneyland Resort.  Nothing about Walt, nothing about the 50 year history (other than some pop-up park facts), in the end, dreadful.

Yes, we had a great time back in 2005 but this DVD kind of left a bad taste in my mouth when thinking about all the great things about that trip.  Just to make sure it was as bad as I remembered, I played again this morning.  Yes, it is very bad.

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