Ben Sharpsteen Reviews

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Pinocchio (1940) (With Bonus Content)

Review Join your favorite Disney pals as they celebrate some of Goofy's funniest moments in this sidesplitting collection of cartoon treasures. Goofy's out of the doghouse and starring in his own collection of seven short films. It's time for fun at work with Donald and Mickey in "Clock Cleaners." Then, in "Father's Week-End," keeping an eye on Junior makes for a nonstop day of so-called rest. Hang on for hilarity when Goofy gets a boat in "Aquamania" and more!
Bambi (1942) (With Bonus Content)

Review Mickey's faithful friend Pluto is unleashed in this first volume of the celebrated canine's cartoon capers. Spanning the years 1930 to 1947, these 29 classic shorts include Pluto's 1930 debut in "The Chain Gang" -- which was actually his first and second appearance playing unnamed, identical bloodhounds -- and the 1941 Academy Award(R)-winning short "Lend A Paw." The tales continue with a special "dogumentary" focusing on the birth and evolution of everybody's best friend, an excerpt from the TV program "A Story Of Dogs," a look back at the life of Pluto's father, animator Norman "Fergy" Ferguson, and more. It's no wonder Pluto's star rose faster than his temper.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Plus Bonus Features)

Review Mickey's pal Pluto developed from the pair of bloodhounds in "The Chain Gang" (1930). Walt Disney liked animator Norm Ferguson's handling of the dogs' expressions, so the artists continued to work with the character. Ferguson's breakthrough animation of the flypaper sequence in "Playful Pluto" (1934), available on Walt Disney Treasures: Mickey Mouse in Black and White, Vol. 2, showed that the cartoon character could think and react to a situation through pantomime. Many cartoons follow the pattern of "Playful Pluto": the ochre dog tries to cope with either a recalcitrant object--skates in "On Ice," an inflatable rubber horse in "Beach Picnic"--or a cute but troublesome animal: a seal in "Pluto's Playmate," a gopher in "Canine Caddy" and the title character in "Pluto and the Armadillo."

Pluto's quick temper and willingness to rush in where pedigrees fear to tread made him a popular subject for cartoons (and military insignias) during World War II. In "First Aiders," Pluto serves as a reluctant subject when Minnie practices splinting and bandaging. Eager to do his bit, he serves as a military watch dog in "Private Pluto," "Dog Watch," and "Canine Patrol." In several of these cartoons, Mickey is reduced to playing straight man to Pluto, who gets the laughs. Pluto is pitted against a black housekeeper, reminiscent of Mammy Two-Shoes in the Tom and Jerry cartoons in "Pantry Pirate"--a rare example of ethnic stereotyping in a Disney short. (Unrated, suitable for ages 5 and older: cartoon violence, occasional ethnic stereotypes) --Charles Solomon


Dumbo

Review Walt Disney was supreme at creating the kind of fun that the whole world could appreciate and this fourth volume featuring Mickey Mouse and other memorable Disney characters includes The Reluctant Dragon (1941), The Goddess of Spring (1934), The Little House (1952), For Whom The Bulls Toil (1953) and Polar Trappers (1938). Color/54 min/NR/fullscreen.
Alice In Wonderland

Review Join the world's most beloved cartoon characters in this new collection of wild and wacky classic animated adventures. It's all downhill when Goofy's car separates from the trailer carrying Mickey and Donald in the edge-of-your-seat hilarious thriller, "Mickey's Trailer." Then, the nephews are in for quite a lot of laughs as Uncle Donald tries to teach them how to chop wood, set up a tent, and avoid scuffles with hungry bears in "Good Scouts." The whole family will love every minute of these 8 laughter-packed escapades! This hour of extreme fun includes: "Mickey’s Trailer"; "No Sail"; "Good Scouts"; "Hello Aloha"; "Old Sequoia"; "How To Ride A Horse"; "Trailer Horn"; and, "Two Weeks Vacation."
The Lion King: The Walt Disney Signature Collection (With Bonus Content)

Review Join your favorite Disney pals as they celebrate some of Goofy's funniest moments in this sidesplitting collection of cartoon treasures. Goofy's out of the doghouse and starring in his own collection of seven short films. It's time for fun at work with Donald and Mickey in "Clock Cleaners." Then, in "Father's Week-End," keeping an eye on Junior makes for a nonstop day of so-called rest. Hang on for hilarity when Goofy gets a boat in "Aquamania" and more!
Beauty and the Beast (1991)(Plus Bonus Features)

Review Mickey's faithful friend Pluto is unleashed in this first volume of the celebrated canine's cartoon capers. Spanning the years 1930 to 1947, these 29 classic shorts include Pluto's 1930 debut in "The Chain Gang" -- which was actually his first and second appearance playing unnamed, identical bloodhounds -- and the 1941 Academy Award(R)-winning short "Lend A Paw." The tales continue with a special "dogumentary" focusing on the birth and evolution of everybody's best friend, an excerpt from the TV program "A Story Of Dogs," a look back at the life of Pluto's father, animator Norman "Fergy" Ferguson, and more. It's no wonder Pluto's star rose faster than his temper.
Aladdin (Plus Bonus Features)

Review Mickey's pal Pluto developed from the pair of bloodhounds in "The Chain Gang" (1930). Walt Disney liked animator Norm Ferguson's handling of the dogs' expressions, so the artists continued to work with the character. Ferguson's breakthrough animation of the flypaper sequence in "Playful Pluto" (1934), available on Walt Disney Treasures: Mickey Mouse in Black and White, Vol. 2, showed that the cartoon character could think and react to a situation through pantomime. Many cartoons follow the pattern of "Playful Pluto": the ochre dog tries to cope with either a recalcitrant object--skates in "On Ice," an inflatable rubber horse in "Beach Picnic"--or a cute but troublesome animal: a seal in "Pluto's Playmate," a gopher in "Canine Caddy" and the title character in "Pluto and the Armadillo."

Pluto's quick temper and willingness to rush in where pedigrees fear to tread made him a popular subject for cartoons (and military insignias) during World War II. In "First Aiders," Pluto serves as a reluctant subject when Minnie practices splinting and bandaging. Eager to do his bit, he serves as a military watch dog in "Private Pluto," "Dog Watch," and "Canine Patrol." In several of these cartoons, Mickey is reduced to playing straight man to Pluto, who gets the laughs. Pluto is pitted against a black housekeeper, reminiscent of Mammy Two-Shoes in the Tom and Jerry cartoons in "Pantry Pirate"--a rare example of ethnic stereotyping in a Disney short. (Unrated, suitable for ages 5 and older: cartoon violence, occasional ethnic stereotypes) --Charles Solomon


Robin Hood

Review Walt Disney was supreme at creating the kind of fun that the whole world could appreciate and this fourth volume featuring Mickey Mouse and other memorable Disney characters includes The Reluctant Dragon (1941), The Goddess of Spring (1934), The Little House (1952), For Whom The Bulls Toil (1953) and Polar Trappers (1938). Color/54 min/NR/fullscreen.
The Sword in the Stone

Review Join the world's most beloved cartoon characters in this new collection of wild and wacky classic animated adventures. It's all downhill when Goofy's car separates from the trailer carrying Mickey and Donald in the edge-of-your-seat hilarious thriller, "Mickey's Trailer." Then, the nephews are in for quite a lot of laughs as Uncle Donald tries to teach them how to chop wood, set up a tent, and avoid scuffles with hungry bears in "Good Scouts." The whole family will love every minute of these 8 laughter-packed escapades! This hour of extreme fun includes: "Mickey’s Trailer"; "No Sail"; "Good Scouts"; "Hello Aloha"; "Old Sequoia"; "How To Ride A Horse"; "Trailer Horn"; and, "Two Weeks Vacation."

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