Walt Disney’s animated version of the adventures of ‘Pinocchio’ from 1940 differs much from the original story by Carlo Collodi. But it soon became the most famous and known one.
It starts with Jiminy Cricket singing ‘When you wish upon a star / Makes no difference who you are. / Anything your heart desires / Will come to you. / If your heart is in your dream / No request is too extreme. / When you wish upon a star / As dreamers do. / Fate is kind / She brings to those who love / The sweet fulfillment of / Their secret longing. / Like a bolt out of the blue / Fate steps in and sees you through / When you wish upon a star / Your dreams come true’. Geppeto’s wish is for Pinocchio to become a real boy. So Blue Fairy appears and says: ‘Good Gepetto, you have given so much happiness to others. You deserve to have your wish come true’. And she makes Pinocchio alive.
‘Pinocchio, I’ve given you life’ – she says to him and as we know that is the most valuable gift of all. But she hasn’t made him a real boy yet. ‘Prove yourself brave, truthful and unselfish, and someday you will be a real boy’ – she tells him. For this to happen though Pinocchio must learn to choose between right and wrong, as Blue Fairy instructs him. ‘Be a good boy and always let your conscience be your guide’ – she says before disappearing. So it’s up to Pinocchio to make Gepetto’s wish come true. Soon, it becomes Pinocchio’s wish to become a real boy too. And Jiminy’s wish is to get a golden badge. By the end of the film all three are granted because they all deserved and earned it.
However before that happens, Pinocchio is tempted by the world. He decides to follow the easy road to success: to become an actor and be famous and rich instead of going to school to learn and improve himself. When Pinocchio gets in trouble and then lies to the Blue Fairy, his nose grows longer and longer. As she explains to him: ‘A lie keeps growing and growing, until it’s as plain as the nose on your face’. And this way we learn together with Pinocchio that we should never lie. Not only that – we should always tell our truth. Even if it’s not very well received by others around us. No matter the circumstances and consequences. Pinocchio promises to never lie again and he keeps his word.
The film ends with the song about the wishing star again because that is its most important message. It’s a reminder that we need to remain dreamers and keep on hoping that our wish will come true. And only then, if we don’t lose our faith, the Universe will fulfill our wildest dreams.