Posted on Monday, March 30th, 2015 by Angie Han
Dwayne Johnson‘s reputation as “franchise Viagra” is well earned, but can he bring a 73-year-old children’s movie back to life in an era of PG-13 blockbusters? Answer: You bet he can.
As part of his Saturday Night Live hosting gig, Johnson starred in the trailer for Disney’s gritty live-action retelling of Bambi. In this version of the story, the traumatized young buck grows up and fights back. Watch the Dwayne Johnson Bambi skit after the jump.
The beefed-up version of Bambi chomps cigars, packs heat, and instills the fear of God into the hunters who once claimed his mother. Best of all, he does it while spouting pun-tastic lines like “Now it’s time for them to pay… deer-ly.”
Of course, Bambi would be nothing without his crew, so he has a “family” to back him up. There’s Vin Diesel as Thumper, so named because he’s “always thumping.” (Taran Killam doesn’t much look like Diesel, even with a shaved head, but he gets the gravelly voice down cold.) There’s Tyrese Gibson (Jay Pharoah) as Flower, who “smells bad but looks good.” And last but not least, Michelle Rodriguez (Cecily Strong) as Faline, “a.k.a. the girl Bambi.”
The new Bambi even gets a catchy theme song, in the form of “Wham Bam Bambi” by Ludacris (also Jay Pharoah). The lyrics are exactly what you’d expect: “Wham… Bam… Bambi! Ludacris! Bambi!”
Aside from a lingering affection for butterflies, Johnson’s Bambi doesn’t much resemble the Bambi we knew and loved and cried for as kids. But you could say the same of Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent and James Franco’s Wizard of Oz, both of whom starred in very real live-action fairy tale retellings from Disney. Maybe a faster, furious-er version of Bambi isn’t really so farfetched.
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