Hooray For Hollywood

On this night of glamour, movie stars, and shiny guys named “Oscar”, let’s talk about one of my favorite rides at Disney’s Hollywood Studios…”The Great Movie Ride.”

Located at the end of Hollywood Boulevard, take a left or right around the large blue hat, there stands the replicated iconic Grauman Chinese Theater.  Before entering, take the time to check out all of the hand and foot prints outside. True fact, those are the real deal. The first one honored to place her signature here first, was our favorite Mouseketeer,  Annette Funicello.   These wonderful signatures are similar to those found in the real Hollywood, CA.

Upon entering this majestic theater, greeters say hello in their burgundy outfits with matching hats- the feel of movies is in the air.  Waiting in line you will see memorabilia from movies such as “Mary Poppins” and “The Wizard of Oz” and then enter a larger room with a giant movie screen.  I have always loved this room- I like the air conditioning. I like after a long day, leaning on the railings in the cold atmosphere while watching classic movie clips is pretty darn cool.  A word to all of those newbies to this attraction, once you are in this room, it goes very quickly.

The doors open up to the right, and you head into the world of make believe.  The vehicles fit several people, and are complete with an actual live Tour Guide!  I give all the credit to those Cast Members who are Tour Guides on the GMR- it not only takes great memorization, but the tolerance to the amount of cheese they have to deal with it on it. It isn’t Jungle Cruise cheese, but it’s close.

The ride starts, we are on set, and we are embarking on a journey that will take us to meet Gene Kelly singing in the rain and Mary Poppins singing her infamous “Chiminy Chim Chim Chiree.”   Now for those of you who didn’t know, this ride contains two scenarios to it. GASP you say? It’s true! You will either experience the Old West for a shoot out, or you will go through the mob scene and for a shoot out. Either way, your Tour Guide will go to help, be kidnapped, and be replaced by either a gunslinger or a mobster.  If you want to have some fun, like we do, mess with the Gunslinger/Mobster- they usually have a great time interacting with the patrons.

As you enjoy other movie scenes, you come upon the Indiana Jones set.  I don’t want to spoil the surprise, but I have to say this part always makes me giggle. Why? Well, God bless the Cast Members, they try, but it’s pretty funny when one of them just aren’t in the mood to play make believe.  In fact, it’s almost more entertaining when they don’t seem in the mood.  We all have those days.

The very best scene of the ride is entering Munchkinland from the “Wizard of Oz.” This scene is like being in the real movie…I can never get enough of it. I heard recently they had a dessert party in this room for an event-THAT is why I want to live in FL. To be able to go to things like that!  I love the Wicked Witch, I love the Munchkins singing, and I love that when you leave you see Dorothy and friends on the yellow brick road.

Last but not least, we are treated to a montage of movie clips before leaving the land of glitz to head back into the world of imagination. I mean, come on, we are still in WDW, there is no heading back into reality until we leave the WDW property.

Since we were working on this blog while watching the Academy Awards this evening, we would like to say CONGRATULATIONS to Pete Doctor and his Pixar Team for winning the Best Animated Film and Best Score Oscars for one of THE best movies of the year “UP.”  Not only do we love WDW, but we are also huge fans of the Disney and Pixar movies-they are what keep us young.

Keeping the magic alive,

Carl and Ellie Peters