Thursday, 22 December 2011

76. Beauty and the Beast (1934)

Good evening kiddies, and come along -  today we will be reviewing Beauty and the Beast.


Belle is my favourite character. That Beast is so frightening, but he's so hot when we see him as a handsome prince in the end.


Gaston is just nasty, he thinks he's so cool, but he ain't.
- He's gorgeous - he has lovely muscles, and has got a six-pack. 
- That 'Beauty and the Beast' song is sooo romantic. I love all the songs.


I love that clock Cogsworth --- wait a minute, are you saying we're not watching the Disney movie?

Look at the title blog post for yourself, does the year look like it reads 1991 or 1934, and does this blog relate to Disney, kids?

Oh man, we're watching the crummy Merrie Melodies cartoon from 1934.


Directed by Friz Freleng in his bland years?


And it's in Cinecolor? Compared to the pretty colours in the Disney one?


From the plot synopsis I've read on Internet Movie Database - it's not an adaptation to the fairy tale?


This is what the main girl will look like in this cartoon?


Compared to the beautiful Belle? 


This sucks. We're outta here!

 Goodbye kids, and scram!! Well, did you enjoy a bit of scenario I did? Well, I thought it would amuse ya - if you didn't like - then screw you (only joking).  If you couldn't follow it - the children dialogue is in italics, and of course - my dialogue is not in italics. So, anyway - here is the ACTUAL review.

 Warner cartoon no. 75.
Release date: April 14, 1934.
Series: Merrie Melodies.
Supervision: Friz Freleng.
Producer: Leon Schlesinger.
Cast unknown.
Animation: Jack King and Rollin Hamilton.
Musical Score: Norman Spencer.

Our story begins with a beautiful castle where a handsome prince turned into a beast lived? Nope, you've guessed wrong. The cartoon begins with a hallway, and there is a grandfather clock that ticks. The time is 10 o'clock at night. The grandfather clock does a type of beat, with the pendulum bashing the spittoon, then the clock goes back to normal. A door opens, with a little girl opening the door (who I guess is 'Beauty'), and she creeps very quietly through the hall.

She approaches a table at the lounge, and she steals some bananas inside a fruit bowl. She slides a banana off the banana skin, and opens her mouth wide open for the banana to land in her gob. She then eats a whole bunch of grapes, in which each grape land in her mouth one by one. After eating some grapes, she burps - covers her mouth so that no-one can hear her. Then, she steals a whole box of chocolates and gobbles them all up - greedy pig.

The girl is still finishing up on the chocolates, in which some type of elf on her wallpaper comes out - AARRGH, why?? Oh wait, it's one of them dreams - what you mean to tell me that once she's inside that room, she's dreaming??? OH wait a minute, it's the Sandman who says "It's time for the little girl to sleep." and places sand on her eyes. Eh? You didn't explain it right, I mean putting actual sand on her could make her eyes sting, and - how is it presented as a dream? I know the saying the Sandman, but I didn't think that she would SEE him.

So yeah, the girl then gets herself from "shuteye", she instantly falls asleep but she finds herself floating and ending up in a dream up in the skies. She then ends up falling down from the skies, with her patch forming into a type of parachute and floats, where we can see her bottom - so those guys really thought we would think of it as 'cute'? Her buttons fall off, where she falls down - and lands in some type of scenery or garden. I have to say that those layouts there are extremely weird - especially in 1934.

She then arrives at a different castle (already completely different and detailed background??) and there are these squires at the top who greet her who play the trumpet as an alarm to drop the bridge, in which the bridge drops. She enters the castle where she is greeted by all these Nursery Rhyme characters and toys, oh boy what a fantasy - for a child. There are then these heralds who sing a Welcome to Toyland song to her, singing that they'll play all they - and there is a frog that does a "Boop, boop, boop", sound Harman-Ising used - aw man, Friz Freleng retraced their footsteps. At least one of the heralds zips the frog's mouth from his annoyance. They also sing to her to be careful of a beast that resides in "Toyland" as well as the guys in the jack-in-the-box. The song finishes and everyone cheers. Well, that was a completely pointless song that was just boring and I'm sure that in the five minutes - I would've completely forgotten it.

Then, there is a parade of toy soldiers who come marching down - including a slight beat in their march. The little girl then approaches the soldier leader, and looks back at her with a love heart dinging on top of him. Okay, but that must mean he loves 5 year old girls. The girl says, "Ain't he cute?" which was a typical Harman-Ising quote back then, and yep - it seems that Freleng tried to continue what they did - but did so unsuccessfully because - he has an even blander look on that carton, for starters. The girl picks up the soldier and kisses him on the lips, in which he turns red. Okay, I don't know if that means he's a soldier who looks the same age as him?

Humpty Dumpty then laughs loudly off screen at what happens, then we see him sitting on the wall (as he does in the Nursery rhyme). Humpty Dumpty then "had a great fall", he cracks on the ground in which we see multiple of toy bird figures that quack, then go into a dance routine. They use their stilts with wheels do to a skating act with Sleeping Beauty being played in the background, since the score is very popular for skating scenes. Up on the wall are these elves that are putting crackers inside the fan in which it looks like there is snow in the scenery. The ducks then crash onto a pile of building blocks, with each one stuck on their head reading "Nertz" - Nertz?? What, so since when did this have something to do with the card game "Nertz"?

All of the toys clap, including the little girl and the toy soldier. The soldier then asks the girl to follow him, as they are about to enter inside a gate. They go through some different books that are available to read - they all appeal to the little girl and the soldier. She turns to the book that she finds - Beauty and the Beast - so, is that WHERE the title came from?

They then sing the title song which is Beauty and the Beast - and yes, it appears to be that's where the title came from. They sing through the text in where that even rhymes, then we get the Robinson Crusoe book singing for us, too. How does that book relate to Beauty and the Beast? They continue singing through that cheesy song, with Mother Goose book illustrations backing up the song for us. Suddenly, we view an illustration of the beast who has a scary look, but scary character. Oh please, I've seen beasts that look scarier. Is this beast meant to be designed to scare kids - well the big question is - was those cartoons made only for kids??? The beast somehow pops out of the illustration - so it's a magical book where illustrations can pop out then?

The beast then pops out starting to chase after Beauty and the toy soldier. The beast manages to grab the little girl in which she screams. Well, this is time for a "villain steals the girlfriend" sequence. Well, are they really going out - it was only one kiss... The toy soldier then tries to help out the little girl by switching onto a toy plane that flies to help out the little girl. The plane then reaches the beast's back in which it shaves parts of his back, and then spins around his body his most of his hair gone.

The little girl and the soldier are then trapped, and have nowhere else to go. The toy soldier still has another trick, in which there is a cannon near him. He strikes out a matchstick, places it on the cannon in which it starts yelping in pain. What? Don't be ridiculous with gags like that, you can't just put a gag like that with no purpose, it wasn't needed!

The monster (or beast) then grabs the girl, and the toy soldier - well they're doomed. OR ARE THEY?? The dream fades back to the little girl at the end of her bed screaming. She wakes up - everything was a dream. She then jumps back onto her bed rather afraid. She hides under her duvet with her patch falling down where we see her anus - and that's all folks.

Well, kiddies, was it as good and as close to the Disney movie?? Not the least part. Well, truth to be told I don't really like the Disney movie very much (rather boring to me) but this short was just worse - no question. The short just followed to a similar Harman-Ising story and Friz Freleng seemed to be too influenced by them at that time. Of course, the colour in this cartoon seem very terrible to you with so much red/pinkish colours in it. Well, that's called Cinecolor to you - it's not meant to be good. I really hate that recurring part with the girl's bum showing with her patch falling down - for gosh sakes, I don't find it cute, or amusing. Anyway, I just added that bit of scenario at the very top just for fun, and thought it would amuse you. Of course, the morale of this short was that she ate chocolate during the night which gave her nightmares - only the Beast. I know they say sometimes eating sweets late at night gives you nightmares, but fruit - really? I guess it would make even more sense if she ate cheese at night.


  1. Given how focused they are on the pants flap gag, I suppose they could have called this short "Beauty and Her Booty".

    As far as the style and pacing of the short, in the wake of the Tom Palmer fiasco, Leon's main goal in rehiring Friz seemed to have been just to get the cartoons back up to the level of the Harman-Ising shorts, in terms of something that would make J.L. and the booking office folks back in New York happy. Which is pretty much all this cartoon is and where the studio would be stuck for the next 18 months or so -- they started getting in some better gags by 1935, even before Avery arrived, but you've got to get into the middle part of '36 before you really start to see the studio begin to try and stake out their own style.

  2. Some animation from this cartoon was reused later in "Toytown Hall"(1936)...

  3. J Lee: You're really right that the cartoons were really trying by mid-1936, and I'm watching those cartoons like now on my chronological list, and Jack King really is improving, and so is Friz Freleng.

    Sanek: I haven't got up to Toytown Hall yet, and I'll see it for my myself shortly when I reach it, which will be very soon (about six shorts away from it).

  4. How can I watch this movie? I have spent hours scanning the internet to purchase or watch online. There's nothing there

    1. Find copies from torrent sites, if you can access them. I have them all through torrents. It's not going to be possible to have them uploaded on YouTube or the Internet due to Warners' strict copyright policy, when recently they pretty much took virtually ALL cartoons down...

    2. Thank you I appreciate your help