In the January 24, 2022 issue of The New Yorker appears a fascinating article, Bambi before the Disney classic, “Eat Prey Love” by Kathryn Schultz. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2022/01/24/bambi-is-even-bleaker-than-you-thought
Disney acquired the film rights and sanitized the novel in 1942 for the classic children’s animated film, “Bambi”, still the highest gross animated film ever Disney produced. Still the Disney film remains one that Stephen King has said “is the first horror movie I ever saw at the age of eight” and still frightens children today.
The novel, “Bambi: A Life in the Woods” was written and published in 1922 by Austro-Hungarian writer Felix Salten. The novel is much more violent and much bloodier than the film.
Salten was a complicated person (he was a hunter of deer, for one thing) and a complicated writer (who wrote children’s books and hard-core pornography and everything in-between). I won’t summarize his life; you have to go check out the article.
Critics have analyzed the novel of “Bambi” to be Man (a term Salten consistently employed and “He” always capitalized) versus Nature. Some critics have analyzed the novel to be the Jews’ persecution in Europe in the early twentieth century culminating in the rise of Nazi Germany.
Salten was an Austro-Hungarian Jew.
Highly recommended for readers interested in literature and classic films.
So you there have it, my friends.
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