Category Archives: Animated

Legend of the Candy Cane (2001)

LegendOfTheCandyCaneCoverThroughout history legends have played an important role in passing down information and values to succeeding generations. Whether it was Washington Irving’s The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow teaching us that the jocks will always exercise supremacy over the nerds, the legend of Johnny Appleseed who pioneered the “tin pot as hat” craze of the mid 1950s, all the way up to more recent tales such as The Legend of Billie Jean which taught us that Helen Slater really did peak with Supergirl, our need to spin yarns of bigger than life heroes, deeds, and blue oxen are a window into our national identity. But of all the stories a young and bustling land vomited forth upon the cold prairie nights, it is the legend of the candy cane that has captured the imagination of Americans more than any other! Continue reading

Robin Hood (1973)

RobinHoodPosterCountry music legend Roger Miller provides the voice (or “pipes” as we say in the Nashville music biz) for the narrator, Alan-A-Dale, the wandering minstrel who torments everyone with really obnoxious hit songs like “Oo-de-lally” when he isn’t giving us the “on the other side of Hazzard County” interludes that explain absolutely nothing. Continue reading

So Dear to My Heart (1948)

SoDearToMyHeartPosterSo Dear to My Heart is a combination of live action and animation that Disney released after their first such effort, Song Of The South. While that film was ingratiating chiefly due to the entertaining stories Uncle Remus tells, both the live action and the sparse animated sequences in this one fall flat. The live action stuff just isn’t terribly interesting (What? Danny the black sheep ran away again? Yawn. I’ll go right out and look for him in the swamp. Again.) and the animated stuff is forgettable pap that doesn’t satisfactorily advance the farm boy/sheep love story we are all here to see. Continue reading

The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949)

Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad DVD CoverDespite being a Disney cartoon, this film is definitely not for children! Based on The Wind and the Willows and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, the movie is about a talking toad who is mentally deranged and a horny guy with big feet lusting after some young hottie while he’s supposed to be teaching the town’s schoolchildren!

As it unfolds, we find Toad’s buddies concerned about his poor money management, even going so far as to appoint Angus MacBadger to act as Toad’s trustee. Even as Angus is attempting to get Toad’s books in order, Toad is out and about wreaking havoc with his new ride, a canary yellow horse drawn cart, pulled by his newest best buddy – a horse named Cyril Proudbottom. Continue reading

The Great Mouse Detective (1986)

Great Mouse Detective DVD Cover 2013What do you need to know about this, the twenty-sixth animated feature from Walt Disney? Just that while there were at least five books starring Basil, the mouse detective, there has only been just this one single movie based on those books. Not a sequel, not a Saturday morning television series, not an Ice Capades version or Broadway show, not even one of those money-grubbing straight to video knock-offs that pop up like a polyp on a middle-aged guy’s colon.

Disney was no doubt smarting from the fact that The Black Cauldron proved an extremely expensive and stinky stew back in 1985. Surely, this cheaper and more conventional tale of a mouse who has to foil the schemes of a rat to take over England with a robot queen built by an expert toy maker, was a very attractive follow up project to try and get back in the black. Continue reading

The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat (1974)

NineLivesOfFritzTheCatPosterThis one sure made me long for the pretentious navel-gazing of the insipid baby boomer parable Fritz the Cat. Two years after everyone was impressed by a horny, foul-mouth, drug-addled cartoon cat that was long on posing and short on everything else, the expected cash-in sequel was released and the results were pretty much what you would expect. Except nine times worse!

It’s a hodgepodge of stories where Fritz is apparently imagining his life in different scenarios. These scenes are partly designed to be shocking and partly designed to be topical. Thus you get scenes of Fritz hanging out with Hitler and also flying to Mars.

Fritz has apparently recovered nicely from the substantial injuries he suffered when that power plant blew up at the end of the first movie because he is now out of school and married to this fat broad who does nothing but criticize him for everything he does (drugs) and doesn’t do (work). Continue reading

Fritz the Cat (1972)

Fritz the Cat PosterFritz is a student at NYU, though like most of these pampered college kids he never actually goes to class. Of course, even if he did, he’d just have those left-wing professors feeding them that anti-American, anti-Christian crap these pinko infested campuses are bastions for. Instead of being brainwashed in class though, Fritz heads to the park with his guitar and a couple of buddies, but their band only really goes into action when some big-bootied gals wander by, showing us that they have what it takes to be rock stars!

Eventually, he discovers that the ladies flock to a crow (they represent the black folks in this movie) and try to impress him with all their white guilt and classes they’re taking in African studies. He blows them off, giving the enterprising Fritz his opening. He lets loose with a torrent of babble about how his soul hurts and he’s on a quest for meaning and all the other great intellectual challenges that have fueled hours of upper middle class faux-conversations for years. And of course it works! Continue reading