The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)

The Hunchback of Notre Dame is one of the most unique movies Disney has ever made. I would have to say that this is easily one of the darker and more mature movies Disney put out. It took me years to watch this one and I remember the first time I did eventually watch it which was on the first DVD release I was completely taken in by the story that was being told.

How to Download The Hunchback of Notre Dame

You can download or stream the film from a digital platform. Click on the Download button at the end of this review and make your choice. If you like Disney classics, check out also our reviews of The Lion King (1994), Mulan (1998), or Tarzan (1999).

The Movie Review

The story takes place in Paris and it features a brutal opening scene. We have a group of Romani gypsies that are making their way to Paris being ambushed by the evil Frollo. A woman ends up dead because of Frollo’s actions and he is even going to kill her infant son who is deformed. However, Frollo ends up adopting the child, naming him Quasimodo, and locking him in the bell tower of Notre Dame cathedral.

It is a bone-chilling intro and one of the best of any Disney movie! We fast forward 20 years and Quasimodo is a nice and sweet young man that lives in the bell tower with his three stone gargoyle friends. I love the three stone gargoyles and I feel that they are some of the more underrated side characters in a Disney movie.

There is a big party/celebration about to happen and the gargoyles convince Quasimodo to go down to the street and celebrate. The people are loving him and he is having a great time, however, Frollo is having none of this and sends his men to spoil the fun. This is a very heartbreaking scene and the cruelty that Frollo does toward Quasimodo is brutal.


The Hunchback of Notre Dame Trailer

However, things are not all bad as Quasimodo is saved and protected by Esmerelda! Esmerelda is one of a group of travelers/gypsies and a very kind soul, but Frollo has his eyes on killing all the Romani that are currently in the city! It is very dark for a Disney movie and Frollo is one of the more dangerous villains.

To make matters worse, Frollo has an attraction to Esmerelda that is a pure lustful obsession, again this is something else that is much darker than you usually get in a Disney movie. Frollo plans to commit his genocide against the Romani people, but Quasimodo, Esmerelda, and Captain Phoebus (who originally worked for Frollo) step in to save the day.

One thing that The Hunchback of Notre Dame does very well is to make you truly care for Quasimodo. Quasimodo is such a likable character and you just want him to break free and be happy. There are many moments in the movie that will just break your heart when seeing how hard this poor guy has it!

At the time it was released, The Hunchback of Notre Dame was a very brave move for Disney. Even now, it is a movie that has much darker themes than you usually get in something from Disney. Some people complain that it was not “dark enough” when compared to the source material. I think that is ridiculous and this was probably as dark as Disney could go with the story, be sure to give this one a watch!



However, things are not all bad as Quasimodo is saved and protected by Esmerelda! Esmerelda is one of a group of travelers/gypsies and a very kind soul, but Frollo has his eyes on killing all the Romani that are currently in the city! It is very dark for a Disney movie and Frollo is one of the more dangerous villains.

To make matters worse, Frollo has an attraction to Esmerelda that is a pure lustful obsession, again this is something else that is much darker than you usually get in a Disney movie. Frollo plans to commit his genocide against the Romani people, but Quasimodo, Esmerelda, and Captain Phoebus (who originally worked for Frollo) step in to save the day.

One thing that The Hunchback of Notre Dame does very well is to make you truly care for Quasimodo. Quasimodo is such a likable character and you just want him to break free and be happy. There are many moments in the movie that will just break your heart when seeing how hard this poor guy has it!

At the time it was released, The Hunchback of Notre Dame was a very brave move for Disney. Even now, it is a movie that has much darker themes than you usually get in something from Disney. Some people complain that it was not “dark enough” when compared to the source material. I think that is ridiculous and this was probably as dark as Disney could go with the story, be sure to give this one a watch!

The Hunchback of Notre Dame
The Hunchback of Notre Dame is a Disney animated musical based on the famous novel by Victor Hugo (1802-1885) who was a French Romantic writer. Download it now.
8.5 Total Score
The Hunchback of Notre Dame Review Summary

Story
8.5
Characters
9
Visuals
8.5
Sound & Music
8.5
PROS
  • The story is much darker than what you would expect from Disney
  • Frollo is one of the craziest and most dangerous Disney villains of all time!
  • Quasimodo is a fantastic character that you grow to love
  • It is unlike any other major Disney movie
CONS
  • It might be a bit dark for younger children
User Rating: 5 (1 vote)
Specifications
Publisher
Buena Vista Pictures
Publisher Website
Operating System
Windows 7
Windows 8
Windows 10
macOS
License
full movie online
File Size
654 MB
Jason Delacey

Jason Delacey

Jason is a 40-year-old writer from Northern England. He has been playing video games his whole life and writing about them for over a decade. As well as enjoying gaming into the wee hours of the morning, Jason is a real film fanatic too! He is open to watching all genres of movies from animated singing animals to brutal horror!

Jason loves to give his honest opinion on games, movies, TV shows and is always willing to give anything a try!

Favorite Games: Resident Evil 4, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time, Bioshock Infinite, Super Mario World, The Last of Us, Halo 2, Streets of Rage 2, Overwatch.

Favorite Movies: Terminator 2, The Empire Strikes Back, Avengers Infinity War, Bloodsport, The Transformers The Movie. Dogma, BASEketball, From Dusk Till Dawn

Favorite TV Shows: X-Files, Supernatural, Lost, American Horror Story, The Mandalorian, Stranger Things.

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