Skip To Content

    Here Are 9 Disney Movie Fails And 9 Disney Movie Wins To Make Up For Them

    Who knew some parts were surprisingly right?

    1. In the opening song of The Emperor's New Groove, Theme Song Guy gets his geography wrong.

    Disney

    In the opening song of the movie, Kuzco is referred to as "an enigma and a mystery in Mesoamerican history." However, Mesoamerica is defined to include parts of Northern and Central America. The Emperor's New Groove is based off of the Incan empire, which was further south than Mesoamerica in the Andes mountains, near modern-day Peru.

    2. But in Incan times, messing up the emperor's groove could've very well landed you at the bottom of a cliff.

    Disney

    I'm sure you all remember in The Emperor's New Groove when Kuzco has an epic dance scene interrupted by a completely innocent man. The man is punished for throwing off the emperor's groove by getting hurled off of a cliff, which is hardly an exaggeration. This was actually a common punishment in Incan times. Incan law wanted to make sure that a crime committed wouldn't be replicated by any other member in society. Therefore, punishments were gruesome, such as stoning, hanging, or getting thrown off of a cliff.

    3. Anton Ego tried to diss Gusteau in Ratatouille, but misremembered his history.

    Disney, American Home Products

    In Ratatouille, after Gusteau's restaurant makes a comeback, food critic Anton Ego is in disbelief after leaving it a scathing review years before. He says, "My last review condemned it to the tourist train. 'Gusteau has finally found his rightful place in history right alongside another equally famous chef: Monsieur Boyardee.'" While this is meant to be a jab at Gusteau, it's actually a compliment. The real Chef Boyardee, Hector Boiardi, was a talented chef and businessman. He was the head chef at the Plaza Hotel in New York, catered a presidential wedding, and opened a successful restaurant with his wife in Cleveland, Ohio.

    4. Though Ego made a mistake, Pixar didn't when they animated a fully-functioning French kitchen.

    Disney / Pixar

    French chefs and critics praised Ratatouille for its accurate depiction of a working kitchen, from the way they cook veggies to the way they chop them. “When Colette teaches the young cook how you cut onions, how you cook vegetables in a pan, how you season everything — that’s it, that’s how we do it!” celebrity chef Cyril Lignac said after watching the film. Pixar spent time monitoring the sounds and movements of French kitchens to research the film.

    5. In A Bug's Life, the mosquito ordered the wrong drink.

    Disney

    Male mosquitoes don't drink blood. However, in A Bug's Life, you can see a mosquito at the bar next to Flik order a Bloody Mary, O+. In the insect world, only female mosquitoes are the ones that suck blood and bite, as the blood is used to produce the eggs. If it was biologically correct, the male mosquito at the bar would've ordered flower nectar instead.

    6. One thing the movie got right, though, is how other insects exploit the labor of ants.

    Disney

    In A Bug's Life, Hopper and his crew of insects take advantage of the ants' hard work gathering food. This isn't too far off of real life. In the insect world, it isn't grasshoppers, but butterfly larvae that take advantage of the ants' work ethic. They emit the same smell as ants do to trick the ants into feeding and taking care of it. The larvae also make the same noises that a queen ant does, fooling the ants into treating it better and saving it first if harm should come to the colony. Butterflies are the real life Hoppers.

    7. Hercules got the villain from the myth wrong.

    Disney

    In the original myth, Hercules was the son of Zeus and the mortal woman Alcmene. Zeus disguised himself as Alcmene's husband, Amphytrion, and snuck into her bed one night, impregnating her with Hercules, who was born a demi-god. Hera, Zeus's wife, knew that Zeus had an illegitimate son and made it her goal to destroy Hercules. Hades played a very minor role in the legend.

    8. However, Hercules' 12 heroic labors stayed pretty true to legend.

    Disney

    According to Greek mythology, to gain immortality, Hercules had to complete 12 heroic labors. In the Disney version, you can see most of the beasts that Hercules conquers in "Zero to Hero" are taken straight from the labors he had to complete in the legend, such as the defeat of the Nemean Lion (which looks an awful lot like Scar), the Erymanthean Boar (pictured above), and the Stymphlaian Birds.

    9. Here's somewhere Finding Nemo lied to you. Whales don't have uvulas.

    Disney

    In Finding Nemo, when Marlin and Dory accidentally got swallowed by the whale, said whale is shown to have a uvula. In actuality, the only known mammals with uvulas are humans and some types of baboon. What is a uvula? Scientists are actually still trying to nail down exactly why we have it. There are theories that uvulas are used in speech, that they are phylogenetic traits from ancestors who previously had to bend their necks downward to drink water, and that they are the culprit of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. But none of these theories have been proven.

    10. However, some parts of the story are pretty realistic for a clownfish like Marlin.

    Disney / Pixar

    In Finding Nemo, Nemo's dad takes an epic trip across the ocean to find his missing son. In reality, baby clownfish sometimes trek hundreds of miles across the open ocean to reach other clownfish populations. Want to know something even cooler? Researchers think that the clownfish also ride ocean currents to help them make the journey. So Marlin riding the EAC has some grain of truth to it. No word yet as to whether or not they take on the jellies during their trip.

    11. You know that romantic free-floating scene in Wall-E? It would've been completely silent.

    Disney

    In the movie, Wall-E and Eve take a zero-gravity jaunt outside the Axiom, resulting in a delightful love scene that makes me smile every time. In actuality, this love scene would have zero sound. Sound needs something to travel through, and space is a vacuum, so nobody would be able to hear the cute giggles and robot noises.

    12. But you'll be happy to know that fire extinguishers actually can be used successfully as propulsion.

    Disney / Pixar

    After Gravity also used a fire extinguisher for Ryan Stone's jump to Tiangong, National Geographic asked astronaut Roberta Clark if that was actually possible. "It's the law of physics. For every action in one direction, you have an equal and opposite reaction in the other direction," she said.

    13. I hate to burst your bubble, but Pocahontas and John Smith were never romantically linked.

    Disney

    According to the National Parks Service, the real Pocahontas may have saved the life of John Smith, but it also may have been an elaborate adoption ceremony. Nothing romantic ever happened between them. Afterward, Chief Powhatan, Pocahontas' father, supposedly took Smith in as a son and they briefly aided the English settlers. About two years later, Pocahontas was told that Smith died (this was not true, as he actually went back to England). Later on in life, Pocahontas married John Rolfe and had a son, Thomas, with him, before dying of an unspecified illness at 21 years old.

    14. However, you want to know something that holds up in the history books? Percy was a real noble-dog.

    Disney

    Disney didn't get a lot right about Pocahontas, but one thing it did is the pug. Percy, Governor Ratcliff's dog, is a lot like the dogs that British nobles carried around with them. According to Pedigree, during the Victorian era, "it was perceived as a link with the natural world, which itself was no longer seen as threatening. It also allowed a visible demonstration of man's domination over nature." Hmm...sounds a lot like Governor Ratcliff.

    15. The technology in Big Hero 6 seems pretty fictional, considering Baymax, a personal health assistant, overlooked a big health concern.

    Disney

    In Big Hero 6, when Baymax inflates to treat Hiro's stubbed toe, he scans Hiro's body. After Hiro's health scan, Baymax says that the only thing Hiro is suffering from is puberty. However, we can also see Hiro's blood pressure (113/90), which is considered high and could be a sign of hypertension. Baymax, a personal health companion, probably should've addressed that.

    16. But Wasabi's plasma cutter isn't too far off.

    Disney

    Wasabi's laser plasma that he uses to slice paper-thin apples isn't very far from reality. Scientists and doctors alike have just recently started using plasma needles to make surgery bloodless. These plasma needles have just 0.1 to 0.2 millimeters of collateral damage. While we don't have plasma apple cutters yet, plasma today has proved to cut thinly and precisely.

    17. Lastly, I hate to break it to you, but in Sleeping Beauty, Aurora and Phillip are dancing obscenely for the time period.

    Disney

    Prince Philip remarks to his father that Sleeping Beauty takes place in the 14th century. Given that time period, the characters should not have been dancing the waltz, as it wasn't spread throughout Europe until the 1700s. Plus, the waltz was somewhat forbidden because older generations considered it unbelievably obscene. Dances in Philip and Aurora's era required people to maintain an arm's length away from their partners and only touch hands (such as the minuet). Hands anywhere else, such as Philip's hand on Aurora's waist, would've been a HUGE no-no.

    18. But not all princess movies deceived you. Actually, the shipwreck in The Little Mermaid follows a pretty realistic timeline.

    Disney, Carlosr / Getty Images

    In The Little Mermaid, we see a shipwreck that Ariel explores where she famously finds a dinglehopper. Atlas Obscura asked the director of the Center for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation at Texas A&M University to watch that clip from the movie to see what parts of the scene were historically accurate. He was instantly surprised that the ship was a pretty accurate Spanish galleon. With the sails and ropes still intact, he estimated that it probably sank a month or so before Ariel made the discovery. Following this timeline, it isn't unreasonable that Flounder found a skeleton under the ship. Since saltwater deteriorates the body quickly and the body was trapped below deck, Flounder's scary encounter with the bones makes sense.

    BuzzFeed Daily

    Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

    Newsletter signup form