The Poor Man’s Fantasia – Review of Make Mine Music

22nd April, 2011 - Posted by DisAnim - Comments Off on The Poor Man’s Fantasia – Review of Make Mine Music

Disney Make Mine Music

Make Mine Music was released in 1946. World War II had ended, which was good, but Disney wasn’t able to pull the funds together for a full-length animated film. So to keep the feature film department up and running, it released several package films with multiple shorts that ran together. So while it is similar in this sense to Saludos Amigos and The Three Cabelleros, the reason behind it was a little different (financial rather than political).

A Time Magazine article of the day stated that Make Mine Music was “the poor man’s Fantasia.” Indeed, what Fantasia did with the classics, Make Mine Music did with the latest hits. Some people probably liked that, but not everyone. Some were a little shocked by some segments—for example, “All the Cats Join In” is slightly risqué, for a Disney cartoon anyways.

Overall, I’m just not a big fan of the package films. But I think I liked Make Mine Music more than Saludos Amigos or The Three Caballeros.

Here are my impressions of each segment:

“The Martins and the Coys”
This segment was cut out of the film for the home release (either VHS or DVD) because of the gunplay, but it was shown on television previously, so you may have seen it. Ultimately, it’s an interesting little piece. My favorite part is when all of the ghosts go to heaven because they’ve killed each other. What do you expect if you’re firing guns at each other like crazy? From this segment I learned that love makes you kick yourself in the head. That’s pretty impressive.

“Blue Bayou”
The animation for this segment was originally done for Fantasia, but it was cut from that film. In my opinion, if it’s too boring for Fantasia, it’s way too boring for Make Mine Music. But oh well. Anyways, that stork sure isn’t concerned with doing anything but look graceful.

“All the Cats Join In”
I thought it was a fun piece, if nothing else. It does show some irresponsible behavior—particularly riding on an engine of a car. One of my favorite parts is when the guy gets hit by a football on the head because he is distracted, and he doesn’t even care. And I liked how they go slow around the cop and immediately speed up once they pass him. Despite having a half-century difference between us, that is something I can relate to. I also found several parts ironic, such as how the little girl manages to get ready and stay one step ahead of her teen sister. And of course, one of the most ironic parts of all is when they kick out the “boring” music—this would be kicked out during a similar activity in modern times.

“Singing Without You”
Umm… there was rain in a window. And the weeping willow turns into a spaceship.

“Casey at the Bat”
This is one of my favorite segments of the film. It’s fun and entertaining, which is more than a lot of these other segments. It has some fun additions to the poem, such as the mustache or lighting a match in a shoe. Some of the animation is also pretty funny, such as the awkward way that the pitcher throws the ball. And the moral of the poem is a good one—you can’t ever be too confident in yourself.

“Two Silhouettes”
The animation was kind of interesting, especially when they would have the cartoon cupids interact with the live-action silhouettes. I liked how the cupids do a little teeter-totter and how they combine to make a heart, but overall I’m just not into ballet.

“Peter and the Wolf”
This is another one that I liked. About a year ago I saw a different version of Peter and the Wolf, one which was a little darker (the duck gets eaten on screen, for example). It was interesting for me to compare the differences of the two. But if I hadn’t had that point of reference, I may not have been as interested in this version. I don’t have too much to say about it, just that the music isn’t my favorite, but it’s still classic and enjoyable.

“After You’ve Gone”
The whole time, all I could think about was Beauty and the Beast since the instruments are walking around like little people. Other than that, I wasn’t much of a fan.

“Johnny Fedora and Alice Blue Bonnet”
I wasn’t sure how I felt about this one while I was watching it. I did feel like the song was a bit catchy, but it just thought it was weird that two hats would fall in love and then be searching for each other. But I like the ending, because love works out in the end, even if it wasn’t what the two hats had imagined for themselves to begin with.

“The Whale Who Wanted to Sing at the Met”
This was my favorite. For one thing, it’s pretty entertaining to have a singing whale on screen. And there are several aspects which can be compared to real life. For example, when news of a singing whale is announced, some experts say, “Impossible! Preposterous! We savagely deny it!” while other experts say, “Magnificent! Miraculous! We certainly certify it!” That just goes to show that experts don’t know everything because they argue amongst themselves. And it’s sad that Tetti-Tatti couldn’t accept anything but his own misconstrued judgments. So in the end, I definitely found it one of the most entertaining pieces of the film, but I also found it to have a lot of parallels with life.

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