Pinocchio (1940)
Photo: Walt Disney Studios

Pinocchio (1940)

  Golden Age of the Silver Screen Episode #1
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Walt Disney Pictures released Pinocchio to theaters on February 23, 1940; grossing $84.3M worldwide. Ben Sharpsteen and Hamilton Luske directed the animation classic which starred the voice work of Dickie Jones, Christian Rub, and Mel Blanc.

Pinocchio Movie Summary

Jiminy Cricket is the narrator and conscience of the film which tells us the story of Geppetto; a man who makes a wooden marionette named Pinocchio in his workshop.

The night Pinocchio is finished, Geppetto wishes upon a star for Pinocchio to be a real little boy. As he sleeps, a Blue Fairy flies down from the stars, and grants Geppetto’s wish.

With one turn of her wand, Pinocchio comes to life, but he is still wooden. If Pinocchio proves himself brave, truthful, and unselfish, she will make him a real boy. Jiminy is tasked as his conscience, and gets a gold medal if he does a good job.

After the fairy leaves, Pinocchio falls to the ground; making a commotion that wakes Geppetto. Upon discovering Pinocchio, Geppetto jumps for joy; realizing that his wish has come true.

The next day, Geppetto sends Pinocchio to school, but he never makes it there. Honest John and Gideon manage to convince Pinocchio to ditch school for the life as a famous actor in Stromboli’s puppet show. Not even a warning from his conscience, Jiminy Cricket, sways him from going with the sly fox.

Pinocchio’s opening night is a success, but when Pinocchio wants to go home, Stromboli locks him in a birdcage. Jiminy shows up, but he’s unable to free the boy.

Once again, the Blue Fairy flies in from the heavens, and asks Pinocchio why he didn’t go to school. Jiminy wants Pinocchio to tell the truth, but instead he tells lie after lie. With each one he says, Pinocchio’s nose grows longer and longer. The Blue Fairy gives Pinocchio one last chance to prove himself, and she frees him from both the birdcage, and his excessively long schnoz.

In another part of town, a shady man hires Honest John and Gideon to find him foolish little boys to take to Pleasure Island. They once again meet up with Pinocchio, and convince him to take a little vacation on Pleasure Island.

On the short trip to the boat, Pinocchio meets Lampwick; a true delinquent child. The two buddy around the island; smoking, drinking, gambling, and vandalizing everything. Jiminy does his best to save Pinocchio, but when Pinocchio chooses Lampwick over him, Jiminy decides to go home.

On his way out, Jiminy discovers Pleasure Island’s dark secret; the little boys physically transform into the jackasses they make themselves into, and then they are sold into slavery.

Jiminy hightails it back to Pinocchio, and he’s almost too late. Lampwick is already a donkey, and Pinocchio has donkey ears, a tail, and donkey laugh. They manage to escape, and make it back to Geppetto’s workshop, but it’s empty.

The Blue Fairy sends Pinocchio a message that a giant whale named Monstro swallowed Geppetto while he searched for Pinocchio. He couldn’t escape, and was now living in Monstro’s belly.

Pinocchio sets out to save his dad. He and Jiminy jump into the sea, and track down Monstro. As he finds Monstro, the mighty whale swallows him with a school of fish. Reunited with Geppetto, Pinocchio set’s Geppetto’s ship on fire; causing Monstro to sneeze them out.

The plan works, and everyone escapes, but Monstro is a bit annoyed, and he smashes the tiny raft they use to escape. They manage to swim through a small opening that leads to a cave and safety. Geppetto and Jiminy are okay, but Pinocchio lies facedown in a tide pool; motionless.

Thinking Pinocchio is dead, they take Pinocchio home. The Blue Fairy shows up, and because Pinocchio proved himself through his selfless act, she grants him his true wish. With a wave of her wand, Pinocchio is transformed into a little boy. Geppetto once again jumps for joy in celebration. When Jiminy goes to thank the Blue Fairy, she gives him a gold badge for a job well done.

Disclaimer

Walt Disney Pictures does not endorse this podcast, and it is intended for entertainment and information purposes only. Pinocchio, all names and sounds of Pinocchio characters, and any other Pinocchio related items are registered trademarks and/or copyrights of Walt Disney Pictures or their respective trademark and/or copyright holders. All original content of this podcast is the intellectual property of the Golden Age of the Silver Screen, the MHM Podcast Network, and Fuzzy Bunny Slippers Entertainment LLC unless otherwise noted.

Affiliate links contained in this post will take you to Amazon.com and/or the iTunes Store. This means when you click a link, and purchase an item, the MHM Podcast Network will receive an affiliate commission. Advertisers and Affiliate Partnerships do not influence our content. See our Terms of Use about the inclusion of affiliate links on this site for more information.

  • Eddie

    Great first podcast! Looking forward to The Mummy, good choice. Hoping there will be a film noir sometime soon as well:)

    • MHMChris

      Thanks, Eddie. I think 1942’s Cat People will be our first noir film we review.

      • Eddie

        Cool, but I’ve never heard cat people called a noir before:)

        • MHMChris

          Yeah, it’s a close one…more old-school horror than noir, but I still consider it one.

          • Eddie

            The 1980s remake of cat people would make a good LTMR