Friday, April 07, 2006

Johnny Legend Presents: The Complete Weird Cartoons (1914 - 1945)

For all the sexuality Betty's supposed to exude in these shorts, it's really not all that daring

Genre: Animation Comedy Shorts

Starring: Betty Boob, Little Black Sambo

Directed By: Emile Cohl to Walt Disney

Overview: A bunch of really old and best-forgotten cartoons from the early days of animation. Ugh.

Acting: The best of the bunch was the Betty Boop. You may not recognize the name Mae Questel, but she was the voice of Betty as well as Olive Oyl (Popeye's girlfriend, come one people). The only time I laughed was at the cuteness of the song she was singing. As for the rest, the constant use of radiating waves out of someone's head and sweat drops flying off faces... kind of lame.
Rating: 3

Cinematography: The most interesting of this category were the Alice films. It's about a little live girl and she's placed in the cartoon. She runs a chicken farm, she plays a toreador, all surrounded by animation. Just think Mary Poppins and Roger Rabbit, that sort of thing. There was also some stop motion claymation stuff. It was a versatile collection with varying animation styles, but not that interesting.
Rating: 6

Script: "Now you watch out for that Tiger, you know how he likes dark meat." - Little Black Sambo's Mama as she send him out to play.

You know I was expecting a far more shocking dialogue. The Russian chicken convincing the other chickens to strike was interesting, and I did think the Betty Boop song was cute, but more because of the delivery. Much less 'astonishing' than I was told.
Rating: 4

Plot: Half the stories were genuinely monotonous. There's one particular short called Crazytown where Betty Boop goes to this nutso city and everything is Bizzaro-World: a man walked on his hands instead of his feet, a mouse at the zoo roars like a lion, an elephant's trunk turns into a steamer trunk (get it?!) and unimaginative reversals like that, really stupid predictable stuff. I was waiting for Gallagher to come out and hit some fruit with a sledge it was so tacky.
Rating: 3

Mood: 'Guaranteed to astound' said the caption. I'm torn. Was I out and out lied to, or were they really telling the truth? Is it astounding that something this bad, boring and bland actually made it into production? I used to think that it was, but with such productions as Jack the Ripper and Ankle Biters, I'm not that surprised. I guess it's settled then. Outright lie it is... Guaranteed... Aren't guarantees all about refunds? Where's my money?
Rating: 3

I don't know what's worse, a white guy in blackface, or a white guy drawing a blackface...

Overall Rating: 38% (Weird is just a Myth)

Aftertaste: This DVD has given me one heap of trouble. When I first ordered it through my membership, it never got to me, so I had to report it stolen and that caused the rest of my DVD deliveries to slow down, due to 'investigations' and that kinda crap. Finally, I order it again, get my DVD, pop it in, it skips a little and it's so frikken boring that I decide I'll get to the rest later. When I do pop it in again, I get this lovely message telling me that the disk is unreadable. Well you know what? Fine. Someone doesn't want me seeing this. Must be a guardian angel because I hated it the whole way through. Obviously some lackey decided to compile a bunch of stupid copyright-free stuff and make some money off it. Good for you, bad for me, such is free enterprise capitalism.