MICKEY MOUSE: PLUTO'S CHRISTMAS TREE (1952)
Mickey and Pluto are decorating the tree but some unexpected guests (Chip and Dale) have made their home in the tree and are dazzled by all the lights and decorations. Pluto sniffs them out and ends up destroying everything trying to catch them.
This classic Mickey Mouse is a must see every year. At this point in Mickey's career, most of his cartoons starred him but the spotlight was always stolen by his co-stars to the point where he would get very little screen time. In this case it's Pluto, whose career was at the height of it popularity, and Chip n Dale, who had just reached the height of their own popularity.
While the animation was really good on the chipmunks and Pluto, I am not a fan of Mickey's animation in this era of his career. The artists thought to change him up a bit. They made his ears not as round and his nose a bit longer. He never wore his trademark red shorts anymore and he moved like he had no neck. This cartoon is a good example of how even the best animators can make Mickey look "wrong".
SILLY SYMPHONIES: SANTA'S WORKSHOP (1932)
SILLY SYMPHONIES: THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS (1933)
Both of these films were directed by Wilfred Jackson. Santa's Workshop was released on Dec. 10, 1932 and The Night Before Christmas was released Dec. 9, 1933. They very much seem like sequels to each other. I'm not sure if they're intended to be or not.
Santa's Workshop shows Santa in, surprise surprise, his workshop. He reads letters from little kids while one of his elves tells him whether they've been naughty or nice. Santa then sends the requests to the workshop. In one of the classic Disney "everything's moving" scenes we watch as the elves make all the requested toys. Once everything's ready to go, the toys all march themselves into Santa's bag.
The Night Before Christmas is what seems like a continuation of Santa's Workshop. The design of Santa is exactly the same (which is great... unlike certain sequels of certain Frosty the Snowman specials). In this film, we see Santa making his first delivery. He slides down the chimney (very cool animation by the way. The chimney seems to swallow him up) and into the fireplace. He sets down his bag and the toys march themselves out of the bag to the tree. It would have been very easy for them to reuse the animation from the first film, but every toy and movement is different... including little wooden Mickey Mouse toys.
Both cartoons had racial jokes that weren't taken out for the VHS we watched, which was interesting. The animation was very fun. I love Silly Symphonies just for the amazing coordination and inventive movement to the music. And Santa's just so jolly!
I don't quite have enough time to write the reviews on these other Disney classics. I will get to them over the next few days so keep checking back and leave your comments!
DONALD DUCK: DONALD'S SNOW FIGHT (1942)
MICKEY'S GOOD DEED (1932)