Friday, 23 September 2011

34. Moonlight for Two (1932)

Warner cartoon no. 33.
Release date: June 11, 1932.
Series: Merrie Melodies.
Directed by: Rudolf Ising.
Producers: Hugh Harman, Rudolf Ising and Leon Schlesinger (associate).
Cast unknown.
Animation: Isadore "Friz" Freleng and Larry Martin.
Musical Score by: Frank Marsales.

"Here, bring Goopy Geer", well folks - we've got him back on his second appearance, but this time dressed as a hillbilly.

The short starts off when we hear the traditional song that used to be played by hillbillies She'll Be Comin' Round the Mountain, the background starts off with a moonlight that rises at night. We see a cabin, in which we see a gal (the same one from Freddy the Freshman) who is also humming the traditional song. It seems that she's dating Goopy Geer in here (looks like the relationship between her and Freddy didn't work out). We look at Goopy leaning onto a tree playing the harmonica, as he meets with his girl. It seems that Goopy acts in a strange way when meeting his girlfriend before saying "Howdy yall!" to her.

There is this bird that whistles up in a tree, and the timing of the bird whistling is bad, but the timing of the little birds whistling one at a time is better. The girl says, "Ain't it cute?" the often-used Harman-Ising quotation. The two of them start to sing the title song, Moonlight for Two and it kind of paces up the cartoon. The voices are the most off-putting part. Goopy's voice is so annoying that it makes me want to blow up my brains. I know that it's not the same person who does the falsetto voices for the Merrie Melodies shorts. Hang on a minute, Goopy's voice has changed from his first appearance, and it sounds more American like, and rustier voice.

They both jump onto a cart, in which they end up rolling down the hill (I'm begging for something violent and gruesome happening to them), instead they end up crashing into a log cabin, and all the logs bundle up into a neat pile, which is good animation, but terrible inbetweening. The cart then crashes into a tree, and then the pieces fall back, to transform into a wheelbarrow that Goopy rides with his girl. They cross a very light bridge, that nearly sinks them into a river, until they go back up.

Here we see the interior of a barn, in which that we see a couple of dancers coming into the arena with a square dancer, more or less "square dancing". There is also a member of the band, who is playing the fiddle, who appears to be using his bow to be stroking his toes like an instrument. There are two cattles who join in as dancing partners, and they grab their tails together in which a cat jumps over the ropes like "skip rope".

Goopy Geer and his unnamed girlfriend arrive at the entrance of the barn dance (with the cartwheel). Goopy steps at the entrance door, and notices that he's in small size, he stretches himself by pulling his ears until he's back to normal size. He steps into the barn and shouts "Howdy folks!", so now his voice has gone into a falsetto, from a rather rusty, annoying voice? Everyone greets Goopy Geer (and his girlfriend), so the two of them start a dance.

Meanwhile there is a hot stove suddenly comes to life, which is quite odd for an inanimate object to do so, but it dances which is kind of creepy - but not as creepy as the one in Sinkin' in the Bathtub. The stove suddenly picks up a whole load of coal and breathes fire out.

There is also a square-dancing pair of dogs who are dancing, the male dog grabs a bottle of moonshine, that flames up most of his body, until he shrinks into a child size. I don't know how many times I've seen a gag like that or seen it before, probably because I've seen too many reused gags, I don't know if this gag was a reuse.
There is also a type of pig that is playing the banjo, and also uses it like a spittoon to spit tobacco in, and Goopy Geer and the stove continue to dance with some gags as well as dancing.

Suddenly, something finally happens when there is a crook who comes in with a handgun, who tries to come by and pucker up Goopy's girlfriend on the lips. Goopy stands by acting so confident, by shouting "Stand back villain!" But, the "villain" starts to pull the trigger with his shotgun, in which that Goopy has two spittoons stuck on his feet, as he runs in them. Goopy starts to kick the spittoons off his face, in which it hits one of the villains and then in the face.

 Meanwhile the stove comes by to help save Goopy in trouble, by using his very hot body to let the villain scream from the burning reaction. The stove continues to keep on burning the villain in the bottom. The stove then starts to breathe fire at him, until the villain is cornered, Goopy starts to shoot out coal and fire into the villain until he runs off into the distance. Goopy and the stove shake hands and that's all folks! WAIT A MINUTE, is that all folks? Rudolf Ising blew a GREAT gag in there, as Goopy and the stove shake hands, Goopy should've reacted to the burning stove from his hand, but yet the villain gets to be burned. What a wasted gag, do you think there's a process of reanimating that scene from 80 years ago?

Overall, the cartoon was just nothing really special, it was just a typical Harman-Ising cartoon from Warner Bros. that was just singing and dancing, and just all bland animation. Personally, the only good-enough material that comes out is those Bosko cartoons by Hugh Harman, but they're still not as brilliant. This cartoon is just mediocre at best, but I'm quite sure that it's lower than mediocre.

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