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The Secret of NIMH
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Customer Reviews:

  • all star
    A loving tale of a mother and and her fight to save her family after the loss of her mate. the journey takes you through the farm house, deep in the rose bush and to the lea of the stone. Meeting many friends and a few enemies along the way you may not cry, but your heart will be filled with emotion....more info
  • Great movie and wonderful way to teach children about respect for animals
    I bought this for myself as an adult, so I don't have the 2-disc version. But my daughter asks for the movie (now that I'm a mom) and I love it more now than I did as a child. This could very well have been a motivator in making me a vegetarian in my teens.

    The story teaches children about love and respect, the importance of family, inner strength and a little message about treating animals with kindness and compassion. LOVE THIS MOVIE! The plot is seamless and great for all ages. Well, some scarier parts might be a bit much for a toddler, but my daughter has watched this since around age 2 and was never too scared to continue.

    Enjoy!...more info
  • The Sinking of the Rats?
    I would like to commend the efforts of Don Bluth and his Production Staff for bringing us The Secret of NIMH. Though somewhat altered thematically from the book, Mrs Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, we're still offered a work which succeeds at the both children's and adult levels. The outcome is wonderful and often magical.

    The cast was carefully selected and their efforts are quite excellent. I appreciate especially the reading of Elizabeth Hartman as Mrs Brisby. Double kudos to Dom de Louis for providing us some much needed comic relief. His vocal talents provide the needed balance with the dark themes and the somber treatment of the material.

    The blatant political message of mistreatment and misuse of animals in scientific research by the unknowing and uncaring humans is made pretty clear. If, then, a Central Idea is presented to us, I would suggest this: "to know more than we once did, to achieve the next level, invites us also to no longer live as we once did. With more ability comes also more responsibility." It seems that this advice would pertain to Man as well as Rats.

    A couple of really inspired scenes stuck me: Chapter 13, where Mrs Brisby meets with the Great Owl; and the Rat Moot in the Council Meeting, found in Chapter 17. I affirm Paul Shenar's Jenner (in his several scenes) is a perfect charlatan and scoundrel: a genuine `dirty rat.' He gets his come-upons toward the end, though. I must confess, however, that I found the overly drawn `deus ex machina' nature of The Stone (i.e. "the sparkly") in Chapter 30 quite too much.

    Several other Amazon Reviewers have mentioned the grainy quality of the image transfer to DVD and this is somewhat accurate. Nevertheless, the method and technology of the time ages well. On my copy, the colors are bright, clear and vibrant, and are quite pleasing to my eye.

    I ran the DVD through both a common Hitachi TV and a Home Theatre quality system and found the sound very good. My only significant difficulty was in understanding Nicodemus, which may have more to do with Derek Jacobi's speaking range and vocal inflection than anything else. Even boosting the volume during these passages didn't help much.

    There is a curious addendum to this review. I feel that due to the subject matter and some rather scary images, this feature should be more properly rated PG. I recommend that you view it (again) before showing it to younger children.

    I'm thinking Three Stars is just about right.

    Russell de Ville
    5 March 2006
    ...more info
  • Scary, but worth it!
    I remember watching this movie as a kid. I was scared, but it's worth a rewatch anytime. It's not a movie that anyone under 6 should watch (there are heavy topics of death, experiments on the mice and the ocassioanl "d" word) but a great cartoon nonetheless that has withstood the test of time....more info
  • VERY CUTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I don't have the movie, but I watch it on Toon Disney and it is a total classic! This is definately a Don Bluth masterpiece!...more info
  • N.I.H.M
    I first watched this movie was I was six years old, but since that day I was completely hooked. Now almost twelve years later I can watch this movie with the same enjoyment.

    The secret Of N.I.H.M (stands for National Institute Of Mental Health) is one of Don Bluths better classics, (director of American tail, land before time)the animation is old, yes, but there is a surreal dark magical feel to it that enhances its effect. The story is not quite for children, and is often violent such as NIHM using the rats for tests and such. Although nothing is shown, an adult will understand the deeper meaning that went into the story.

    If you've ever seen Bambi or Watership down,N.I.H.M is much like them, although containing a more lustrious magic spectrum that makes it one of a kind.

    The characters are engaging, and the voice acting is superb. Peter Strauss and Dom Delous are so right in their various roles that one can't help but feel delighted with this movie. Peter Strauss plays Justin, who's good-looking in his own way and quite a swashbuckler. The end scene between him and the leader Genner is really cool even at this day and age, and the emotion is portrayed uncannily through it all. Dom De lous, well, frankly, who couldn't like him as the klutzy crow just looking for love?

    One the whole this is a wonderful movie for more than just the children to enjoy. Take it from me....more info
  • Secret of NIMH
    This is a pretty good movie. Interesting storyline about what the secret is. The bird, Jeremy, is a bit annoying for me, but I still like this movie. ...more info
  • A cheesy disappointment
    My mom bought me the movie after we finished reading Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH. I was really excited to watch it. When I did, I ended up bewildered and disappointed.

    First, there were many things in the movie not even in the book. Also, I didn't understand why Nicodemus and the owl had spooky, yellow glowing eyes. They were very creepy. The movie was much more violent than the book ever was. The rats don't even look like rats. The rats were just smart, there was no need for magic.

    In conclusion, this movie was very cheesy. No pun intended.

    ...more info
  • don't waste your time...
    I read the book, "The Rats Of NIMH", and it was amazing! Now, I'm not a Sci-Fi person, but it WAS great. But the movie probably had 4 things related to the book.
    Things different-
    In the book, she is Mrs. Frisby, NOT BRISBY.
    In the book, Jenner just disagrees with the plan and quits, he is not EVIL!
    There is no amulet/gem thing in the book.
    THERE IS NO MAGIC, JUST SMART RATS!!!!!
    This movie was a complete WASTE of my time. If you have never read the book, and never will, ENJOY!

    Now if you excuse me, I'm going to have a nice time reading one of my favorite books, Mrs. Frisby And The Rats Of NIMH.
    ...more info
  • A far cry from the book, but a decent animated film nonetheless
    Don Bluth's The Secret of NIMH claims to be based on Robert C. O'Brien's children's novel, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH. However, the closest relationship between the two is the characters' names (though even Mrs. Frisby is renamed in the movie).

    The loose plot is the same--a widowed mouse needs to move her house to keep it from being run over by the plow with her bedridden son inside. However, the Bluth film adds a whole level of nonsense, removing the most important scenes of the book--the scenes that gave the story its charm and believability--and threw in some absurd magical mumbo-jumbo, dressed the rats in little clothes, and generally messed up a story that was quite good on its own. The result is a foolish and somewhat clumsy story made into a film that shares little of the spirit of the book it was inspired by.

    That said, the film is ranks at or above the level of typical Disney films of that era. The animation is top-notch, and Bluth's experience as a Disney animator shows in his good visual storytelling. Because of the frequent use of backlighting as a special effect, it comes off a bit flashier than contemporary Disney films of the era. Everything looks generally more sleek and polished (compare to Oliver and Company, The Black Cauldron, The Aristocats, and other '70s-'80s Disney). In general the voice acting is good and not too heavy-handed, with Dom Delouise playing the only really memorable voice role: Jeremy the crow. The plot also moves along at a good pace.

    At its heart The Secret of NIMH is a kids' movie. However, grown-ups will also probably enjoy The Secret of NIMH, though they may want to leave to get a snack during the obnoxious magical segments....more info
  • great movie! : ) poor quality DVD : (
    This is one of the more inspired films to come out of the American animated kids' genre. The story is intriguing and original, a far cry from the typical generic, condescending product that normally gets marketed to kids. This film's uniqueness is clearly owed to the brilliant book upon which it was based: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O'Brien.

    It's an emotionally-charged movie, being centrally the story of a widowed mother who must venture out into a world of danger and struggle against enormous odds, determined to find medicine for her dying son. The artwork is brilliant, being gorgeous at times and terrifying at others. The voice acting is excellent as well. The film is a little darker and scarier than what one might normally expect from an American kids' movie. People have widely varying opinions on scary stuff in kids' movies. I was eight when this movie first came out, and I loved it. It's definitely not any scarier than Pinnochio; now that movie is disturbing! I suppose it might be more correct to say that not all of the characters in The Secret of NIMH are cute, and some are downright ugly. The rats of NIMH are, after all, rats. But that doesn't stop them from being likeable. You will find yourself cheering for some of them, booing others, and even crying for some.

    I would love to own this movie on DVD. I will not buy this DVD, however, because of its reportedly bad transfer and because it is only available in the butchered, "reformatted to fit your screen" version. The Secret of NIMH desreves the artistic respect that certain animated classics enjoy, such as Snow White and Fantasia. It is definitely worth being released in widescreen with a decent-quality transfer that does justice to the artwork and a soundtrack to match. Unfortunately, for now it seems to be getting the throw-away treatment befitting most of the garbage that gets marketed to kids. Hence the three stars instead of four. What's the point of having a DVD if it's poor quality?

    Hopefully someday this excellent film will get the treatment it deserves. ...more info
  • Still magical after all these years
    My nephew has discovered this movie, which has forever labeled, in my mind, actor Peter Strauss as "Justin." Fun trivia: Strauss, currently appearing as a John Kerry-like president in "XXX: State of the Union" when he's not in Miracle-Gro commercials, named his son Justin after the heroic, brash, Captain Kirk-like rat.

    And at the risk of being labeled a pervert, I had a crush on Justin when I was a girl. How could you not? His name fit him, the voice was fantastic, and he had a great sense of humor--appealing despite his shortsightedness about his rival Jenner, who seeks to rule a colony of genetically enhanced rats. How genetically enhanced? Dr. Julian Bashir of "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" would feel right at home among them.

    Like Bashir, and the monstrous Khan Noonien Singh from the original "Star Trek," the rats run the gamut of personalities and moral character, from the duplicitous, cunning power-hungry Jenner, to Justin, to conflicted Jenner accomplice Sullivan, to...ah...the regal rat leader Nicodemus, voiced by Derek Jacobi. My dad put it well: "Justin's the soldier, Nicodemus is the statesman." Also, unlike in the book this wonderful story is based on, Nicodemus is a wizard.

    Again, at the risk of being labeled strange, I also had a crush on Nicodemus.

    All the rat wizardry and brilliance adds to the wonder, but the emotional heart of the film is Mrs. Brisby (Mrs. Frisby in the book), a widow seeking to move her family before humans tear up the farm field where she lives. There's one problem: her son Timothy, an invalid, has pneumonia, and as the gruff herbalist Mr. Ages explains, Timmy can't be moved. What's a mother to do, especially when there's a ferocious cat, a well-meaning comic lovesick crow, and a meddling shrew (literally!) all complicating and aiding her quest? And just what does Mrs. B's deceased husband Jonathan have to do with the rats as well as the fearsome Great Owl?

    I first was exposed to the movie through the graphic novel, wonderfully illustrated, and to a kid the Great Owl looked huge--of course, the drawing was from the perspective of a humble mouse. Mrs. B's courage and determination in the face of incredible odds make her the perfect heroine, a Frodo seeking to do the right thing, aided by a magic talisman, and caught in a battle to keep the magic from falling into Jenner's hands. A wonderful adventure story with brilliant visuals and a timeless message....more info
  • Very intense but good
    This movie was one of myy favorite movies from MGM growing up. Sure it scared the crod out of me the first time I saw it in second grade. This movie has several parts that are very intense. I think the G rating is not accurate. I recomend you don't watch this movie unless you are in adolescents or older. Many parts of this movie like the visit to the great owl and the scene with the plow the escape from dragon and the duel ext scared the witts out of be. If you are younger than adolescents I recommend you reed the book Ms. Frisby and Rats of Nimh and its two sequels Rasco and the rats of Nimth and Rt Margret and the rats of Nimth. If you like the movie I recommend the secret of nimth 2 Timothy's Rescue the only sequel ever made to it....more info
  • Childhood Classic
    I've actually tried reading the book, but I just love the movie so much more. Mrs. Brisby is a single mother mouse desperately trying to save the life of her oldest son, Timmy. In the process, this timid heroine is forced to face her fears and doubts in order to become stronger and accomplish her goal.

    The characters are very loveable, cept for your villains who are appropriately creepy in the classic Bluth form. If you want something far more in-depth, the book would be a better read, BUT, for good old fashioned family fun, this is the perfect movie, especially on a rainy day....more info
  • Waiting on a special edition
    I absolutely love this film, words do not suffice... it's a wonderfully acted, subtle, funny animation masterpiece. Which is why the DVD doesn't do it justice. The visual transfer is awful, very grainy/compressed, no real menu options. It would be better if the original widescreen presentation were also available. It's painful when every frame is so painstakingly drawn, to miss what's happening on the edges. This is a great film that has touched several generations. It's unfortunate that MGM doesn't recognize the potential it has to touch people of a broad range of ages. Work of this quality deserves better treatment....more info
  • OOPS!!
    This movie should not be rated G. It's hard to explain to a first grader why the characters say the "D" word. I know they hear that on television all the time, but when I buy a G rated movie, I expect no surprises!!...more info
  • What happened?
    Let me start off with my overall opinion- I hated it. My friends and I found this dvd and decided to watch it together due to our fond childhood memories of it. I remember liking it as a child. However, once we finished watching it, I felt cheated. There is hardly any storyline. It's as if the director took one incident from the book (I have not read it yet) and decided to make an hour long movie about it. The characters don't even get a chance to develop. Now, if you go into watching the movie like you would prep yourself for an animated short, you'd be impressed. But an hour and 22 minutes is plenty of time to tell a good story and they don't do that. I'm not one for sequels, but after watching this, I felt it needed at least two more. One to explain the full backstory of Jonathon Brisby and one (that's already made) about Timmy when he's older.

    I did rate it two stars and that is because the art and animation qualities are really well done. The movie is beautiful. Overall, I would advise parents to watch the movie before they show it to kids. It's up to them to decide when they think their child can handle it. I'd suggest around 8-10 years old at the earliest. I watched it in 4th or 5th grade and was not affected by it too much. For those that didn't catch it, someone in the movie did say that NIMH stood for the National Institute of Mental Health. This is not a movie I intend to own, but for it's artistic merits, I may view it again later on in life....more info
  • Bluth Needs to Jazz it Up
    I'm in agreement with Tankexmortis below. The DVD provides you NOTHING more than the VHS except format convenience. Considering the effort/money Bluth put towards reviving Dragonslayer and Space Ace, I would've expected this work of art to be digitally remastered with commentary, extras, etc. Don't be fooled by the new cover art. Hopefully, one day, Bluth will remaster the film - it truly deserves it....more info
  • Movie is 5 Stars But FOX dropped the Ball BIg Time on This Re-Release!
    Fox is finally giving fans a Special Edition of this MGM Catalog title. Using rehashed artwork instead of the Original Poster Artwork that was always much cooler. They are calling it a Family Fun Edition unfortunalty those of us who gree up on the film are older now. 25th Anniversary Edition Would have been more fitting. Would have been cool to have somethign about Jerry Goldmsith as composer bonus feature/ Trailers also. Some details have surfaced about the set but the good stuf we'd like are sacrificed for sorry to say but mediocre "kid" games that are and will always be filler and a waste of resources. We want Film stuff not a 10 min. Featurette on the film It deserves something much longer. They will be deleted scenes and commentary from Don Bluth and Gary Goldman. This film still deserves better. Kids can buy the bare bones movie only us collectors want somethign more. ...more info
  • Finally a widescreen version of N.I.M.H.
    I have no quarrel with the quality of this Widescreen version on DVD; it looks beautiful and sounds great. Having said all that, I have no idea why 20th Century Fox released it on 2-discs, other than to jack up the price. For that reason I am giving it a grade of only 4 stars, even though the film deserves 5 stars.
    Disc One contains the feature with audio commentary. Disc Two has a 15 minute Making Of featurette and six games for children. The theatrical trailer was not included. All the information on Disc Two would have easily fit on Disc One with room left over for much more.
    I'll stop complaining now and enjoy the film......more info
  • One of the Best
    Don Bluth's first full length animated feature, an adaptation of the book "Mrs. Frisby & The Rats of NIMH" is an engaging and enchanting film filled with strong animation and good voice acting, not to mention a great score by the late Jerry Goldsmith. A must for any family. ...more info
  • Great movie, horrible DVD.
    First, let me say this: this is an incredible movie. From an era when children's movies didn't have to be painful for adults to watch, this brilliantly animated gem shines beautifully along with director Don Bluth's other films (particularly the Land Before Time and All Dogs Go To Heaven).
    That said, don't buy this DVD. With no extras, no widescreen option, and no director's commentary (which I'm sure I'm not alone in wanting), this DVD is an insult to the high quality of the movie it contains. Until the publishers realize that the original fans of this movie are grown up now, they won't make much money at all. Don't waste your money on this, if you have to watch this movie, use the old VHS tape your parents bought you - the picture and sound quality is liable to be better anyway....more info
  • Dark and Brilliant
    I remember seeing this movie as a kid in the mid-eighties. I found that it was quite different than the average disney fare. It had a certain darkness about it not unlike a Tolkien novel. The storyline I think is a bit advanced for the average young child, but older children and adults will appreciate it. The animation is first-rate....more info
  • 2 Disc Edition is an Improvement... Mostly
    The colors are better in the 2-disc edition, but don't let the addition of the widescreen format get you too excited - it's falsely achieved. I compared the full-frame version to the widescreen (both are included in the new release), and for the widescreen version, all they did was crop off the tops and bottoms of the images. I read the producers were kinda baffled when they heard a 'widescreen' version of NIMH was coming out, because the film was shot very near 1.33 to 1 aspect ratio, which is pretty much the size of most old-fashioned TV screens. Anyhow - get this new edition, watch the full-frame version (can't believe I'd ever be saying those words), and enjoy the commentary track from Don Bluth and Gary Goldman, as well as the 15 minute featurette on disc 2. The games are for little children, and so is the packaging. I wish there was a collector's edition release geared more towards adults and animation enthusiasts, but this will have to do for now. Best animated film ever made, in my opinion....more info
  • "Courage of the heart is very rare..."
    Mrs. Brisby is a newly-widowed young mother with four hungry mouths to feed. She's also a tiny field mouse who scrapes out a modest living for herself and her family among the other small animals who live in Farmer Fitzgibbons' field. Harder times have fallen upon the meek and selfless little mouse, however, as her youngest child, Timmy, has become ill with pneumonia just as the family is forced to find a new home before the farmer's plowing begins. Doing anything and everything in her power to help her son and discover a remedy for her moving woes, Mrs. Brisby visits an ingenious little mouse named Mr. Ages who provides her with medicine for Timmy. Unfortunately, the danger comes sooner than expected, and Mrs. Brisby must find a faster solution. At the suggestion of her friend and neighbor, Auntie Shrew, the desperate mother takes her plea to the Great Owl. This is a dangerous task indeed for a tiny little mouse, but Mrs. Brisby will stop at nothing for the welfare of her children. She survives the frightening experience only to be sent on another quest. The Great Owl informs her that she must seek out the wise, old Nicodemus, leader of the rats in the rosebush, for only they have the power to move her home; the rats of NIMH.

    NIMH, the National Institute of Mental Health, is the key to all that Mrs. Brisby never knew about her late husband. Her experiences with the rats of NIMH, escapees from that awful place, will open her eyes to an entire world of secrets, science, and magic that she never could have imagined before. Most importantly, she will come to realize the power within herself. "Courage of the heart is very rare; the stone has a power when it's there."

    When former Disney animator Don Bluth struck out on his own, he was unable to take the Disney "magic" with him. Despite the number of animated films to his credit since, most lack a certain special "quality" that sets them in league with the great works of the house that Walt built. This is not to say that many of his films aren't enjoyable. In fact, a few came rather close to that Disney excellence, and one such film shines above all the others: "The Secret of NIMH." In a time when fantasy films were all the rage, NIMH was the perfect animated feature, but what made this story so powerful and exceptional was the bold style in which Bluth chose to tell it. "The Secret of NIMH" makes no effort to be like a Disney film, nor does it attempt to be aggressively different. It simply uses its own style to create a world that suits the story perfectly. There is magic, but no fairy-godmothers or three wishes. The animals in NIMH live among modern day humans, but their own existence is very much medieval, with swords, wizards, and strange creatures around every corner. The film makes no apologies for depicting blood, death, and at least one use of the "D" word (I wasn't exactly counting). In fact, I'm quite surprised to see it listed as rated "G" on Amazon. I had thought it came out as a "PG" film, though I'm not certain. Regardless, the film is excellent for family viewing among parents and older kids; not too low-brow for adults, but full of humor, fun, and adventure for the younger set. The characters are striking and real, from the humble little Mrs. Brisby to her caring friends, to the dangerous creatures that lurk and plot around them. Dom DeLuise is unforgettable as the clumsy and confused Jeremy the crow, and the dramatic presence of greats like John Carradine, Hermione Baddeley, and Derek Jacobi is not unfelt. The animation is glorious, as one should expect from a former Disney animator, and the story's message about courage and love is conveyed flawlessly, but the real power of this film is invoked by the music. The hauntingly medieval-sounding score by Jerry Goldsmith will stay with you forever, even if Disney music is more your style (take it from me, a Disney fanatic), and Paul Williams' singing of "Flying Dreams" during the credits is equally enchanting.

    The DVD is much less spectacular. The only real extra feature is the theatrical trailer, and the film is presented in fullscreen without having been remastered. Still, it's nice to replace the old VHS with a disc, even if the viewing experience is only slightly improved. The DVD I have features the previous cover art, however it is my understanding that the art is the only thing that has changed with this newer release. Hopefully, this animated classic will receive a more comparable DVD release in the future. If you haven't seen "The Secret of NIMH" yet and consider yourself a fan of animation, you MUST pick it up. Outside the Disney Studios, American animation doesn't get much better than this!

    ...more info
  • The Secret of Nimh
    This has always been one of my favorite animated films. It follows the novel pretty well, and is just really enjoyable to watch. I absolutely recommend it....more info
  • Reaches Higher
    Many animated movies come and go but very few have the staying power to be called classics. No, I'm not talking about Disney films (which seem to be called "Disney's Classic" before the movie has a chance to become a classic these days), but non-animated films that tend to show people that animation is truly different from live-action. "Spirited Away" was a movie that showed there are some stories no Hollywood budget could properly produce. "American Pop" showed everyone that sophisticated adult stories could work in the form of animation. Then we have "The Secret of NIMH," the revolutionary animated movie about a mother mouse attempting to save her family. In this movie though her family is not in danger of a evil rat who's looking to marry the widowed mother, but of Pneumonia, which one of her sons has.

    This normally wouldn't be any more of a concern then it needs to be, but the harvest has come early, threatening to destroy the Brisby house when the farmer starts his tracker. With the risk of a chilled wind taking the life of her son, Mrs. Brisby seeks out help from a gang of rats who escaped from the secret society of NIMH, a place that captured them and tortured them through "unspeakable tortures." This is where I end my summery, as I'm afraid of ruining the masterpiece that is "The Secret of NIMH." There are many attempts made to make animation more then what currently is. I remember how "The Lord of the Rings" was put into production to create an animated movie that could truly bring to life the fantasy world Tolken created, yet the movie came off as slow and tedious.

    With "The Secret of NIMH" Don Bluth, along with several former Disney animators, created a film that is both stunning and emotional at the same time. For a movie about a bunch of rats, it's amazing how complicated it can be. Bluth holds on to key elements of the story, letting the mystery unfold over the course of the film, leaving the audience to savor the unraveling mystery and power of a well crafted screenplay. Characters who appear to be two-dimensional later on prove to be complicated characters, and indeed, you may be shocked to discover some situations are very different then what you originally predicted they would be. Though the movie was largely animated out of Bluth's garage, the movies animation is stunning to watch.

    There are several key scenes that are beautiful to look at, and show much skill behind the craft of animation. A couple of the scenes even look like you could frame and pass off as a classic painting. It's a movie that has aged remarkably well over time, and when kids watch it today they get their first taste of how animation can be new, bold, exciting, and different. It's a movie that not only inspires to be better then most animated films, but most movies period. The only real celebrity in the movie is that of Oscar winning composer Jerry Goldsmith, who provides one of the classic movie scores of our time, and gives the movie a depth that would be lacking would it not be for the score. Most animated scores are a set-up for a musical number. The score in "The Secret of NIMH" sounds like one that would sound at home in a movie like "Saving Private Ryan" or "The English Patient."

    That said, there are bits about the movie that don't work. First of all for all the praises I sing about the animation, since it WAS animated in a garage it's of a 1.33:1 aspect ratio as opposed to a widescreen ratio, which means the movie doesn't as much of a cinematic scope as I'd like it to have. Also a bumbling crow named Jeremy (and voiced by Dom DeLuise) is one of those annoying sidekicks that exist mainly to provide comic relief and to get in the way. Granted, Jeremy's presence isn't fatal, just annoying. There's still far more good in this movie then there is bad, and truth be told, these shortfalls have only become noticed by me as a result of seeing the film so many times. But despite the number of times I see it, "The Secret of NIMH" is a movie that still aims higher then most movies I've seen.

    Rating: **** stars...more info
  • .........BEAUTIFUL
    This movie is beautiful. Simply beautiful. The story, characterization, music, and animation are all gorgeous. This movie gives me hope. I'm so glad that Don Bluth was able to do that because it means that someday, with practice and hard work, maybe I can be that good.
    Some scruples others have had are the change of Mrs. Frisby's name to Brisby. Either it was an issue of copyright (Frisbee) or of "Ha, ha, her name's Frisbee!" echoing throughout theaters, I trust that Don Bluth had his reasons. Some have disliked the fantasy aspects of the film. I personally think that they added, but that's only a matter of opinion. And finally, the flashing lights and glowing eyes DO get somewhat gratuitous. However, I can ignore them, and they don't really distract me. If you claim to like animation at all, you have to see this movie. This animation is beautiful. This is the work of true masters. JUST LOOK AT THEM MOVE! I almost passed out when Nicodemus' hands/insanely-complex-robe came on after the opening credits.

    The characterization is amazing, too. Justin is brave and heroic, Nicodemus is wise, and Jenner is as villainous a rapscallion as ever graced the animated screen. But even so, the true glory of the characters is Mrs. Brisby. Have you ever noticed how all the girls in movies these days are idiots? I sure have! And Mrs. Brisby does NOT fall into this category. She's quiet and careful, but she's brave and determined, too. She can tell whether someone is a good person or not. She's kind and sympathetic and humble. She is, perhaps, my favorite heroine of all time.

    Yes, this movie does get scary. Yes, there is some blood. But to me this is justified. If a movie isn't truly scary, then when the villain is defeated, there isn't a true triumph. There's no sadness to make the happiness all the more precious.

    So--

    If you are a sentient being--WATCH THIS MOVIE AND FAINT AT ITS AWESOMENESS!!!!...more info
  • The best animated feature Disney never made
    As a child, I watched The Secret of NIMH so many times that I wore down the tape and drove my parents crazy with each compulsive viewing. Oftentimes, my siblings and I and the neighborhood kids would get together at someone's house, watch it, and go outside afterwards to reenact parts of it or make up new story lines. It was the sort of movie that inspired you; it made you think. It made you want to be a part of it.

    What makes The Secret of NIMH so powerful is that it doesn't talk down to kids or bore adults. It's style with substance--beautifully animated with great attention to detail (just watch and listen to that opening sequence in Mr. Ages' house!) and a moving, wonderful score. But most importantly, The Secret of NIMH is a smart, challenging movie that touches on great themes of love and sacrifice and intellectual awareness.

    Mrs. Brisby is a simple field mouse who's fallen on hard times--her husband is dead, her son is ill and can't be moved, and there's a tractor heading straight for her house. After seeking advice from a huge, scary owl (a scene made all the more poignant because we're reminded that "owls eat mice"), she sets out to find a colony of rats--the only living beings who can possibly help her out. The rats, made intelligent by a creepy experiment at the National Institute of Mental Health, are in the process of debating their future--and the idea that with enhanced intelligence comes moral responsibility. While the rats fight about realism and idealism, Mrs. Brisby--a field mouse, or "lower creature" as she is called by one of the rats--upstages them all with her intense devotion to her children and her unwavering bravery and willingness to do what's right.

    Despite its beauty and entertainment value, the movie still has its flaws and plotholes, some of which pricked me even as a child. For instance, what exactly is "the stone" and how did it get its power? Why is Nicodemus alone endowed with special powers (such as telekinesis) while the rest of the rats have to settle for being just "smart"? How do they manage to erase all vestiges of their existence and journey to Thorn Valley in a few hours? Does Mrs. Brisby have a first name--apart from Mrs. Jonathan? Aren't there any female rats around? Nicodemus is called the leader of the rats but we don't see him doing much leading--he's kind of a figurehead, and even Mrs. Brisby addresses him as "your majesty."

    Plot holes aside, I'd recommend this movie for any child older than five or six, or for any adult along for the ride. It's a rare kind of kids' movie, one of a kind, and it leaves you wanting more when the credits roll across the screen. You'd be hard-pressed to find another animated film with this kind of intelligence and heart. I'd know--I've been looking my entire life....more info
  • Mom's Review
    My 5 yr old and 2 yr old love this movie, but it has a fight scene, death, and a scary scene or two. I gave it 4 stars for that reason. ...more info
  • The Secret of Nimh
    I recently purchased the Secret of Nimh from Amazon.com. I am very pleased with the movie, the ease with which I was able to make my order and also with the time it took to receive my movie. ...more info
  • One of the all time great animated films
    Considered by many to be the finest animated film made outside of the Disney banner, Don Bluth's The Secret Of NIMH (1982) was a welcome return to the classical style of animation when American cinema needed it most. There was a near two-decade-long "dry spell" following Walt Disney's death in 1966 when the studio placed a greater priority on developing live-action films, and made extensive budgetary cutbacks to its animation departments. Don Bluth and a dozen other animators grew so disenchanted that they left Disney in the late 70's to embark on their own projects. NIMH was Bluth's first and most satisfying film. Though at a domestic gross of $13 million, its initial theatrical release -- though not a failure as some have claimed -- was a significant commercial disappointment. Dwarfed by the now legendary movie marketplace of the summer of '82 (with E.T., Star Trek II, Blade Runner, Conan The Barbarian, and Tootsie among them), NIMH also had the misfortune of a poor marketing campaign thanks to studio politics. Still suffering insurmountable losses from its Heaven's Gate debacle, United Artists had fathered NIMH before MGM bought out the company -- they, in turn, acquired control of the film. Having little interest in an animated film of its own, and wanting to place greater emphasis on its "tentpole" release (Poltergiest), MGM dropped the ball, giving NIMH release little, if any, fanfare.

    Yet The Secret of NIMH has endured over the years, thanks largely to television screenings and home video sales. Ask anyone who was a child during the eighties, and they've likely seen and loved the film. Based on Robert C. O'Brien's Newberry Award-winning novel, "Mrs. Frisby And The Rats Of NIMH," the movie combines a dark yet awe-inspiring view of nature while adding fantasy elements. It's a rather liberal view of the book, true, but faithful in its spirit -- evoking the same feelings as Richard Adams' "Watership Down." The images deliberately used the old fashioned style of animation, utilizing extremely detailed paintings with deep, vivid, dreamlike colors and rich blacks. Expertly voiced by a fine cast (including the late Elizabeth Hartman as the widowed mother field mouse trying to save her family), NIMH still holds up against today's CGI-aided features. It still feels fresh, as it avoids many of Disney's usual traits -- NIMH's NOT a musical, and presents some rather intense scenes for a G-rated film. Like The Wizard Of Oz or The Black Stallion, it is one of the few family films that adults may enjoy every bit as much if not more than younger audiences. Jerry Goldsmith's score (his first for an animated film) remains one of his best.
    ...more info
  • Golden Oldie
    I miss all the old MGM cartoons and animated movies.

    I hadn't seen this one in about 10 - 15 yrs when it popped up on Amazon the recommendations for me that day. I about fell over. I loved these movies because they were so fantastical but always fairly harmless. The bad guy never wins, the good guys are always ones that you would want your kids to relate to and the stories are always fast-paced and creative. Why can't we make stuff like that today huh? I mean, I'm only 25 and I totally don't understand HALF of what's on tv now a days.

    I would absolutely recommend this to ANYONE, kids or no. I even bought a copy for my mom for Christmas b/c I know she'd love to watch one of our favorite old movies with my youngest brother, remastered and on DVD looking better than ever!...more info
  • 5.49 how can you beat that?
    I bought this movie at walmart and paid 9.00 for it a year ago. to see it online at 5.49, just blows my mind.

    This is a really great movie. this is a movie i will be showing my kids someday, and they will probably show thier kids and so on.

    and for anyone that has never read the book or seen the film, nimh is National Institution of Mental Health. it is an institution where tests where performed on mice and rats. some rats where injected with a chemical, and wierd things began o happen.

    that is where this movie gets real good!
    i don't want to spoil, i hate spoilers, but just buy this movie! great price for a great film....more info
  • Movie - Fantastic DvdFeatures - Whats a Special Feature?
    Holy freaking crap! I cant believe this is on DVD. This is one of my Favorite childhood movies and storys. If you even remotely like this type of story i recomend the book also! This movie has some of the best classic animation i have seen to date. When i watch this movie, i find myself just staring into the backgrounds which were created with such care and finess. They detail is simply rediculous for the time it came out. The story revolves around a mouse and her family, yeah yeah, its been done before. But this story is a bit deeper then your average kids movie. It really gets you into it, and when the movie ends you are just Itching for more. Fantastic Movie! 5 Stars all the way!
    Now as for the dvd and features... well, whats a feature? you might as well just have a vhs, the picture is mildly grainy, like it was a direct copy from vhs, well, a little clearer then that, but still. And theres not a single feature at all. The only "feature" on the whole dvd is that you can hit next chapter and have it jump forward.. thats about it....more info
  • Awesome remaster
    I saw this movie when I was a child which when I was 6. This one though was a very good redesign and re-mastering of the movie. Bluth took out Alot of the noise and artifacts of the movie. has a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound along with a commentary from Bluth himself. as a result this is a great DVD to have if you enjoy the movie Alot. This was supposed to be a HD type quality but I wasnt sure if it is or not because Im looking at this on my PC which has a GeForce 8800GTX with PUREVideo system integrated. which supposidly gets rid of the noise on movies. Overall a good DVD to get...more info
  • Love this show! Many differences b/t book & movie, but still a good movie to view!
    Many differences b/t book & movie, but still a good movie to view! The only thing that really bugged me is that they changed her name to Mrs. Brisby, with a B, when her name is Frisby. Oh, well, little things bug me, but overall, I have always enjoyed this movie!...more info