Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

Walt Disney Treasures: Disney Rarities, Celebrated Shorts: 1920s - 1960s

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
7 out of 10
Extras Rating:
7 out of 10
Movie Details:
View here

Buy this DVD at Amazon.com

Rating: Unrated

Starring:
Virginia Davis as Alice

Special Features:
Alice's Cartoon World: An Interview With Virginia Davis

From Kansas To Hollywood: A Timeline Of Disney's Silent Era, 1923-1928

"A Feather In His Collar"

A Symposium On Popular Songs With Audio Commentary By Richard Sherman

Animation Art Galleries

Other Info:
Dolby Digital
Running Time: 326 Minutes

Synopsis:
The following text is from the DVD cover:

"This extraordinary volume of rare Disney magic showcases some fascinating characters never before seen together. From Walt's earliest work in the 1920s to some of his most sophisticated shorts of the 1950s and '60s, he captured the imaginations of millions plus two Academy Award® wins and eight nominations all included in this volume. Among the gems is Walt's first hit cartoon series, 1923's Alice's Wonderland, which married live action and animation. And you'll get to meet the little girl who played Alice, Virginia Davis. Other unforgettable characters, experimental shorts, and "one-shot" cartoons include Ferdinand the Bull (Academy Award® winner, Best Short, 1938), Noah's Ark, and Paul Bunyan."

Walt Disney Treasures: Disney Rarities, Celebrated Shorts: 1920s - 1960s is not rated.

Mini-Review:
The "Walt Disney Treasures" DVDs have been fantastic looks into the Disney archives and this continues that tradition. Most notable among the short films included here are the Alice Comedies, short silent pictures featuring a live action little girl placed in cartoons. They were some of Walt Disney's earliest animation. But along with them are other interesting short films where the Disney animators experimented with stop motion animation, various artistic styles, and more. They were testing grounds for techniques used in later pictures. You'll find the following on this DVD set:

* Alice's Wonderland
* Ben and Me
* Alice Gets in Dutch
* Football, Now and Then
* Alice's Wild West Show
* Toot, Whistle, Plunk & Boom
* Alice in the Jungle
* Pigs Is Pigs
* Alice's Egg Plant
* Social Lion
* Alice's Mysterious Mystery
* A Cowboy Needs a Horse
* Alice the Whaler
* Hooked Bear
* Ferdinand the Bull
* In the Bag
* Chicken Little
* Jack and Old Mac
* The Pelican and the Snipe
* The Story of Anyburg, U.S.A.
* The Truth about Mother Goose
* The Brave Engineer
* Paul Bunyan
* Morris, the Midget Moose
* Noah's Ark
* Lambert, the Sheepish Lion
* Goliath II
* The Little House
* The Saga of Windwagon Smith
* Adventures in Music: Melody
* A Symposium on Popular Songs

Like I do with most family DVDs, I sat my kids down in front of it to see what they thought. My 6 year old daughter liked them quite a bit. She viewed Alice's Wonderland and Noah's Ark and was entranced by both. She particularly liked the stop motion Noah's Ark where the animals were made out of pipe cleaners, corks, pencils, and other knick knacks. It's amazing that animation that is 85 years old can still entertain kids today.

Included among the bonus features is "A Feather In His Collar", a WWII era cartoon where Pluto promoted donating to community chests. It's a rare find which you probably would never see if not for this DVD set. Leonard Maltin, the host for Disney Treasures, also continues his very informative introductions and even interviews Virgina Davis, the first girl who played Alice for Walt Disney.

If you're a fan of Disney or animation, this is a required addition to your collection. And if you've been collecting the Disney Treasures series, you'll definitely want to include this.

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