Welcome to this blog of my film reviews. Some have been drafted carefully on paper, others I have sat and typed. I'm going to make it clear right now that I don't expect you to agree with my (re)views, or to like my style of writing. However, I want my views to be just out there and open, as a person who wishes to express himself from deep within. Feel free to comment and debate with me, but I do ask that you are civil and not harsh, as any comments which are basically swear words and insults will automatically be deleted. Also any text that is in orange (and often bold) is a Hyperlink to either a source, or a previous post for background reference.

Saturday, 18 September 2010

One Hundred and One Dalmatians


Based on Dodie Smith's 1956 novel One Hundred and One Dalmatians became the most successful film of the 1960s, grossing over $215 million in box office reciepts - an impressive feet considering cinema tickets on average cost less than $1 back in 1961.

The narrative starts with dalmatians Pongo (Rod Taylor) and Perdita (Cate Bauer) giving birth to fifteen puppies, recently after their respective owners Roger (Ben Wright) and Anita (Lisa Davis) marry. However, Anita's old friend Cruella De Vil (Betty Lou Gerson) has moronic brothers Jasper (J. Pat O'Malley) and Horace (Frederick Worlock) kidnap them so she can turn them into a fur coat. Pongo and Perdita run away from home to rescue their beloved sons and daughters, only to find that Cruella has kidnapped a total of ninety-nine puppies. The pair gather all the puppies together and head back to London, with Cruella, Jasper and Horace hot on their heels, with Cruella not willing to give up until she gets the puppies she needs for her coat.

Once again Walt Disney created a top-notch animated feature with this film. The animaton/cartoons are wonderful; they are very detailed, very carefully drawn and very bright, and create the perfect animated sequences - a true testimony to the skills of the animation team at Disney. There is also some great comic relief, particularly from Jasper and Horace as you very rarely find such a moronic pair of henchmen. Their constant bufoonery, bumbling, and fighting with each other will crack you up, as will the fact that Horace sometimes realizes what the dogs are doing to trick them and escape, only to be told by Jasper that he's being an idiot. The film is, however, carried from start to finish by Cruella. Like all the great Disney villains (The Wicked Queen, Captain Hook, Jafar, Scar) she can often appear majestic and sophisticated, but like almost any Disney villain who gives off that appearance she will end up full of burning rage, and throw a tantrum if things don't go her way. And thanks to Betty Lou Gerson's wonderful voice performance Cruella is truly one of the most cunning, terrifying and spine-tingling villains in the history of Disney animation.

In short this film is an outstanding example of a quality Walt Disney animation that can stand the test of time, thanks to the animation, the characters, and let's not forget that spine-tingling song Cruella De Vil.

Rod Taylor, Cate Bauer, Betty Lou Gerson, Ben Wright, Lisa Davis, J. Pat O'Malley, Frederick Worlock, Thurl Ravenscroft, David Frankham, Martha Wentworth, Mimi Gibson, Barbara Baird, Mickey Maga, Sandra Abbott, George Pelling, Ramsey Hill, Tudor Owen, Tom Conway, Bill Lee.

BAFTA: Best Animated Film.

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