Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas

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Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas - A Fun, Family Friendly Christmas Movie

Dec 11, 2008 (Updated Apr 27, 2009)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Cute, entertaining family friendly Christmas movie.

Cons:Stories were predictable for the most part.

The Bottom Line: Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas is a good family friendly Christmas movie.  People that like Mickey Mouse may also enjoy this movie.


I generally enjoy Christmas movies, though some are much better than others.  I also really like Mickey Mouse and the other classic Disney characters.  I was interested in Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas when I first heard about, but I didn't finally see it until a few years ago.  I recently decided to watch it again.

Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas, which came out in December of 1999, is a collection of three short Christmas stories featuring different Disney characters.  It started off showing a Christmas while Kelsey Grammer provided a short narration and introduced the first segment.  Grammer also did more narration to introduce the other segments as well as briefly talking after the last segment.  The things he said did tie into the stories and worked very well to deliver morals without getting overly preachy.  The segments each told different stories and weren't connected beyond being Christmas related.

The first story, Donald Duck: Stuck on Christmas, featured Donald and his three nephews.  Huey, Dewey, and Louie were sad when Christmas was over and all three of them wished that it was Christmas every day.  They were thrilled for a while, but eventually living the same day over and over got boring.  When they decided to spice things up a bit, they ruined the holiday for everyone else and finally realized what was really important about Christmas.

In A Very Goofy Christmas, Goofy and his son Max were trying to mail a letter to Santa while over coming some complications in getting to the mailman.  Goofy caused some trouble on a detour through the mall, but the letter was mailed.  Max started to have doubts about Santa after the neighbor Pete said some things.  Goofy then tried to keep Max belief alive while also showing him the importance of helping others.

The final story was a version of a fairly well known Christmas story featuring Mickey and Minnie.  In Mickey and Minnie's Gift of the Magi, the two were trying to find a way to get the other a Christmas present even though they didn't have much money.  They each faced a disappoint before ultimately finding a way to buy the presents.  

Donald Duck: Stuck on Christmas was a lot like Groundhog Day since the same day was relived over and over until Huey, Dewey, and Louie found some way to stop it.  The main difference was that their loop involved Christmas instead of Groundhog Day.  The story did work well and was entertaining.  I thought that A Very Goofy Christmas was a bit more original, though I have seen other Christmas related movies or television shows that featured a child having doubts about Christmas.  Obviously the last story was a version of O. Henry's  The Gift of the Magi.  That story has been retold many times, but this was a good version and would be a good introduction to the story for children.  There weren't any surprises to the stories for me, but there might be a few for children if they haven't seen any versions of these stories before.  I wasn't bothered by the fact that the stories were predictable.

I thought that all three of the stories in Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas were entertaining.  They all worked together well even though they featured different characters and told completely different stories.  Each story was directly connected to Christmas in some way.  Fun things connected to the holiday, like getting presents and decorating, were shown in the stories before a moral was shared by the end of the story.  The morals did add to the stories and help to point out what is really important about Christmas without getting overly preachy.  There were a few funny moments in the stories as well as some more serious ones.  The second and third stories especially were a bit more serious.  I did think that there were happy endings for all the stories.

The animation in Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas was done well.  I think it was created with hand drawn animation.  It wasn't as stunning as what has been done with computers in recent years, but it was still done well.  The several classic characters that turned up in the stories looked like they were supposed to.  The short scenes between the segments were also animated even though not as much was going on during those times.  

When Disney first started, several characters were created who would go on to become classic characters.  I've always enjoyed seeing the cartoons with those characters, but Disney hasn't done much new animation with those characters in a long time.  I think that Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas was the first new movie to feature some of the characters - like Mickey, Minnie, and Donald - in a long time.  Goofy had been in A Goofy Movie in 1995.  It was really nice to see those characters again.  The characters all acted and sounded like I remembered them, though some of the voices were a little different since different people were performing the voices.  Daisy was voiced by two women, one for each of the two stories she was a part of.  A few other characters, like Chip and Dale, also turned up briefly.  In the last story, Minnie was working for a mouse named Mortimer, which just happens to be the name that Walt Disney was first going to use for Mickey.

Voice Cast

Wayne Allwine - Mickey Mouse
Tony Anselmo - Donald Duck
Jeff Bennett - Mortimer
Corey Burton - Dale
Jim Cummings - Pete
Bill Farmer - Goofy/Pluto
Kelsey Grammer - Narrator
Tress MacNeille - Chip/Dale/Aunt Gurtie/Daisy Duck - in Donald Duck: Christmas Every Day
Diane Michelle - Daisy Duck
Russi Taylor - Minnie Mouse/Huey/Dewey/Louie
Alan Young - Uncle Scrooge McDuck

DVD Information

Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas was released straight to video in December of 1999.  I'm not sure if it was released on DVD at that point or if it was later.  I picked up the DVD a few years ago for around $7.  The special features include a Deck the Halls video performed by SHeDAISY.  Their version of the song played during the credits.  There was also a DVD storybook for The Gift of the Magi, a sing along for Deck the Halls and one for Jingle Bells.

Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas was a fun, entertaining Christmas movie that is a good choice for families.

This review is part of Carstairs's 80 Years of Mickey Mouse Write Off.

Christmas Movie Reviews
Alvin and the Chipmunks ~ Bad Santa ~ Best Christmas Movies ~ A Christmas Story ~ Christmas With the Kranks ~ Deck the Halls ~ Die Hard ~ Die Hard 2: Die Harder ~ Elf ~ The Family Stone ~ Fred Claus ~ Home Alone ~ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966) ~ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) ~ The Ice Harvest ~ It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie ~ Jingle All the Way ~ Just Friends ~ Lethal Weapon ~ The Muppet Christmas Carol ~ Muppet Family Christmas ~ National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation ~ The Nightmare Before Christmas ~ The Polar Express ~ The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause ~ Scrooged ~ Trading Places ~ Unaccompanied Minors ~


Recommend this product? Yes


Viewing Format: DVD


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