Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Animation Doing Its Job
Here's one of Friz' best cartoons. I'm trying to figure out the date. it says 1949 on the title card, but 1951 in his Flimography online. Oh well, the clip here is in a very 40s style of animation.
Friz' drawings tend to be very conservative - they aren't obviously wacky like Clampett's or Avery's, but in a few of his cartoons the animators breathe a lot of life into the characters just by the way they move them. This isn't very typical of Friz' cartoons, especially if this is really from the 50s. Friz usually makes his animators animate within the confines of a tight invisible box.
I feel like the characters can't stretch their gestures out far enough without hitting a wall. Ever have one of those dreams where you are trying to move or run, but some force is pushing back against you? That's how I feel when I watch a lot of Friz cartoons. But not this one.This is a funny anticipation for Sylvester's take. The top of his head floats above his other head for a frame.
This run is really funny and beautifuly animated. No limited animation, comic book, strip, live action or any other medium can give the audience this kind of satisfaction. This is purely dependent on the animator's skill and sense of humor.
This is the thing that only animated cartoons can do and that everyone refuses to even try for any more. Even when they have the money.
I love how Sylvester is scrambling along the floor and begging for the can opener by opening and closing his outstretched hand.
This post is the beginning of a little series about 40s style animation. It's my opinion that the 40s was the period that most took advantage of what animation is really capable of. It never got any better.
Even 3rd string directors and studios in the 1940s turned out animation that was brilliant compared to anything from the last 40 years. Animation that was entertaining completely on its own level, regardless of the context of the story or the quality of the sound track.
Canned Feud happens to be a funny story and well directed, but the great animation brings it to a whole other level.
Studios like Walter Lantz, Terrytoons and even Famous managed to turn out cartoons in the 1940s that were entertaining in spite of the lack of direction or point of view. I promise to prove it.
Next: Great acting in a Foghorn Leghorn cartoon.