One of the early directors of Disney's animated features and shorts.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) -- Co-directed with Walt Disney, Dorothy Ann Blank, William Cottrell, Richard Creedon, Merrill de Maris, David Hand, Wilfred Jackson, Larry Morey, Perce Pearce, Dick Richard, and Webb Smith. To realize that this came out less than ten years after Steamboat Willie (itself a breakthrough) is pretty amazing: a full-blown feature length musical animated movie in color. You can trace back pretty much every animated movie back to this one, and not many have surpassed it.
Pinocchio (1940) -- Co-directed with Walt Disney, Norman Ferguson, T. Hee, Wilfred Jackson, Jack Kinney, Hamilton Luske, and Bill Roberts. Even better than Snow White: better songs ("When You Wish Upon a Star" to name only one), better characters, better story, everything. The best story ever told about our free-will while striving for perfection relationship with God. A
Fantasia (1940) -- Co-directed with Walt Disney, James Algar, Samuel Armstrong, Ford I. Beebe, Jim Handley, Albert Heath, T. Hee, Graham Heid, Wilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske, Bianca Majolie, Sylvia Moberly-Holland, Bill Roberts, Paul Satterfield, and Norman Wright. Probably the best thing Walt Disney ever did, though you can't really compare this movie to the others, since it's not really a traditional movie at all. There's something really magic about this movie, and it's truly "something else." Every segment (including some of the goofier interstitials) are great (the one with the hippos is my least favorite, but I still like it), but the standouts are the Nutcracker Suite with its lazy imagery, the creation of the world and the dinosaurs, and the best of all, the "Night On Bald Mountain." The Mickey one was good too. A movie way ahead of its time, if it had been a success, you might have seen a more artistic Disney for the next several decades. Unique. (See Eric Goldberg for the sequel, Fantasia 2000.)
Dumbo (1941) -- Co-directed with Samuel Armstrong, Norman Ferguson, Wilfred Jackson, Jack Kinney, and Bill Roberts. After Fantasia, this seems like a return to some of the cute and funny stuff that made Disney so popular to begin with in his short subjects. But it's certainly great, and it's got some interesting narrative choices: like the fact that Dumbo doesn't even fly (what some might remember as most of the movie) until the movie is almost over. Sweet, cute, and touching.
Copyright (c) Jun 2004 - Nov 2006 by Rusty Likes Movies