Friday, September 29, 2017

Fun And Fancy Free

This Disney movie turned 70 years old, a couple of days ago.
As you probably know there are two movies in one, two different stories combined into a feature length package.
Bongo, the story of a little circus bear, and the other Mickey and the Beanstalk.
For a previous post on Bongo go here:

I remember seeing Mickey and the Beanstalk as a kid, and loving it. I still do.
Production on the film was difficult. First the story had been conceived as a full length feature film, but was later reduced to just under half an hour. Then because of WW II  the movie was put on hold because propaganda films for the US government took priority.
Fun and Fancy Free wasn't released until September of 1947. I love it's colorful art direction, the story treatment and the animation. (Although it is not on the level of earlier Mickey shorts such as  The Brave Little Taylor.) The idea of little characters entering an oversized  Giant's world is beautifully presented with stunning layouts and backgrounds, extreme up and down shots are all over the film.
On this anniversary I recommend re-watching the movie, I think you will enjoy it once you get over the poorly written live action sections.



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  2. For the completionist (like me): is this review from the October 14, 1947 LOOK Magazine?

  3. Not a bad idea! I first watched it not long after I discovered this blog, when you prompted me to watch or rewatch a lot of classic Disney animation. (Can't speak about Netflix, but NowTV in the UK gives you access to a lot of Disney films on demand) After hearing about Willie the giant here, I wasn't disappointed to see him 'in the flesh', so to speak. Also pleasantly surprised to find he was voiced by Billy Gilbert - someone familiar to me from quite a few Laurel & Hardy films!

  4. I love looking at the model sheets for Mickey and the Beanstalk! There is allot of thought and research that went into the material there, I suspect on the part of director Bill Roberts, who Shamus Cullhane described as quite analytical of what he was putting on the screen. One model sheet for Willie prescribes straight ahead animating for drawing his hair to get the right motion, and another page had detailed research on specific foods for the medieval setting.

  5. gorgeous color! love the simplicity of the BG.

  6. There's a lot of fun stuff in this film, but I do agree that The Brave Little Tailor is a bit better. They had a really good cast of animators for Mickey and the Beanstalk, but I don't think any of them really did their best work.
    Of course, I'm nobody to be criticizing these amazing artists, but I think even Woolie did some more entertaining Goofy animation in other shorts.

  7. I just re-watched this film. My DVD is from the "golden collection". If you go through the menu there is a part in the " bonus material" where you can have the story read to you. There are some great looking drawings in that section. I was wondering how they were colored......