One of the downsides of being a Disneyholic is that I have been very intimately familiar with so many great attractions that are now gone from Disney World. Indeed, I question the wisdom of removing many of these attractions, especially considering what took their place. In the case of Captain Eo, unfortunately, the removal probably made political sense for Disney, since it starred Michael Jackson. The movie closed in Disney parks world-wide while Jackson was being investigated for child molestation. Coincidence? Probably not.
But Captain Eo is a gem, as far as I'm concerned. At the time it was filmed, directed by Francis Coppola and executive produced by George Lucas, Eo was the most expensive film ever made, in terms of money spent per minute. It was also a 3-D movie, rich in special effects (remember, we're talking George Lucas and the Disney Imagineers), and had amazing music. Think what you will of Jackson, the man could sing, and he could move! The cast also featured Angelica Houston as the menacing Supreme Leader, who is transformed into a beautiful queen through Eo's music and magic.
The movie is an awesome bland of music, 3-D special effects, and a simple, predictable story that leaves you grinning in spite of yourself. It concerns a band of galactic losers led by "the infamous Captain Eo" (Jackson) who get one last chance to get it done right -- they have to deliver a gift to the Supreme Leader of a desolate planet. While Eo's sidekicks (really lovable puppets) doubt their ability to complete the mission, Eo refuses to give up and in the end, proves that believing in yourself is the key to achieving the impossible. Pretty cool message.
You can catch any Disney attraction on youTube, of course, and Eo is no exception (except it's not in 3-D, and the quality is not great). While Disney has shown, so far, no intention of releasing the movie once it was gone, it lives in video clips on the net. But I really miss seeing it at EPCOT. I miss it every time I go there. I'm sorry, but Honey, I Shrunk the Audience (Eo's "replacement") just doesn't do it for me.