HEIDI (Theatrical Release Austria 2015)

Ben Meyers’ rating: 3.6|5.0 Starsììì

Heidi—If Shirley Temple had not already made this movie in 1937, this 2015 Austrian remake of the Heidi story would be considered quite good. Unfortunately, the original Heidi stands alone as does the originals of The Sound of Music, My Fair Lady, Wizard of Oz, Annie, Gone With the Wind, Giant, To Kill A Mockingbird, Marty, 12 Angry Men, It’s A Wonderful Life, The Godfather, Rocky (to name just a few) movies that do not ever need to be remade. While one hesitates to say that this 2015 remake is a poor remake of the original 1937 film, it just cannot compare to the original movie. It does have some unique perks, but it fails to capture that complete innocence that the first Shirley Temple caught so exquisitely so that it is unduplicatable. This film does not have the flow and continuity that the original Heidi had and does not capture the realism nor the reason of the first 1937 movie. Some scenes are randomly thrown in without good transitioning as though the editing department either did not have enough film to provide good transitioning or the script was written in such a manner that there was no proper reason for the scene to be there. An example is the sledding scene. There seemed to be no real preparation for that scene.

Storyline

An orphan girl is left in the care of a grandfather high in the Swiss Alps.

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director Alain Gsponer for directing effort. Thank you to Producers Jakob Claussen, Lukas Hobi, Ulrike Putz, and Reto Schärli for making the film possible. Additional characters/cast include: Heidi (Anuk Steffen), Dete (Anna Schinz), Barbel (Lilian Naef), Alpöhi (Bruno Ganz), Pfarrer (Peter Jecklin), Senner (Christoph Gaugler), Geissenpeter (Quirin Agrippi), Geissenpeterin (Rebecca Indermaur), Grossmutter (Monica Gubser), Dörfler (Arthur Bühler), Frau im Dorf (Marietta Jemmi), Sebastian (Peter Lohmeyer), Fräulein Rottenmeier (Katharina Schüttler), Klara (Isabelle Ottmann), and Tinette (Jella Haase).

Buy a ticket? Yes? No? Maybe?

Maybe. Industry professionals may want to view the two movies side by side to see why the first was so much better than the second as a study. But, the audience will definitely want to see the first Heidi to get the impact of story and quality of story on first view. The 1937 version deserves a permanent place in the family home video library as a quality classic family share movie that has terrific re-watchable status through many, many years.

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Ben Meyers

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