Discussion Question 1:
Well I am going to follow suit with just about everyone else so far and pick a Disney movie that depicts the Hero’s Journey. Disney has always done such a good job with following the Hero’s Journey line of events. The movie that I found that follows that is Disney’s Planes. After thinking about it for a short bit I was able to come up with a scene for each line of events. The basic storyline behind Planes is that there is a crop duster plane named, Dusty, who is tired of being a crop duster. He wants to race like other planes do and pretty much right at the beginning makes the choice that that is what he is going to do. That is where the story line begins.
The shortened version of the scene that depicts the Departure stage of the Hero’s Journey is when Dusty is crop dusting some fields like he normally does and starts doing maneuvers. At that point in time he really decides that he wants to be able to go fast and race with the other planes. He feels as though he shouldn’t be set in one job, especially one that he feels he doesn’t fit into. That scene fits into the Call of Adventure portion of Departure. There is somewhat a Refusal of the Call when it comes out that Dusty is afraid of heights. He feels as though he may not be able to compete as well against the other planes because of this. However, he doesn’t necessarily plan on letting this stop him. He does have some sort of aid in his journey though. Skipper is an old Navy plane that helps Dusty train and become quicker and more efficient in his flying skills. He then sets out on his journey to prove his worth to the other planes.
The shortened version of the Initiation portion of the Hero’s Journey is next when Dusty enters himself into the race. He overcomes a huge obstacle in his way by doing this for the first time. While many of the other planes, competitors and not, laugh at him he pushes through and races his heart out to end up coming in 6th. After initially not placing into the big race someone ends up not being able to race in that and Dusty is bumped up into it. This is the big adventure that he has been waiting for and wanting all his life and he ends up taking part in this race. During this race his fear of heights comes into play however, he is able to overcome it and complete a daring part of this race. Continuing on with Initiation he meets a woman plane that is also taking part in the race. When Dusty falls on some hard times with parts, Ishani, helps him by giving him some of her spares so he can continue racing.
Lastly is the shortened version of the Return. Dusty ends up being the winner of the entire race and shows everyone that even a crop-dusting plane can compete and win. Sometimes there is more to someone than it seems and they just need to be given that chance to shine. He wins the blessing of his mentor Skipper and all of the people that thought he would never be able to accomplish his dreams. He even aids his mentor by helping him gain enough confidence to fly again. Since Dusty was able to accomplish his dreams he was able to become a master of both crop-dusting and racing. He can now do whichever he chooses which was always really his dream. He now has the freedom to live his life however he chooses.
While this is only a kids movie it can still be analyzed to conform to the Hero’s Journey. Kids may not be able to understand it very well if at all but they still see it in nearly every Disney movie that has ever been made. I feel like that is an amazing thing, it is something that is consistent in real life and thinking about it deeper I feel like it applies to almost everything in life. We all overcome obstacles and in some way we go through this Hero’s Journey to get through it. It’s awesome to be able to see that in movies as well.