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Director: Perch Sarkisyan
Release Date: 1965
Rating: ★★★
Review:

A Hot Stone © Soyuzmultfilm‘A Hot Stone’ is a Soviet propaganda film from the 1960s based on a children’s book by Arkady Gaidar from 1941.

In it a boy stumbles on an old stone in the woods, which has the ability to give someone a new life again. The boy wants to help an old and lonely man with it, but the man sees no need for it as he has led a happy life. Enter the propaganda, in which the old man tells about the revolution and the civil war. This part is not much of a story. but it’s full of symbolic images, like people breaking their chains, and a giant worker slashing the double headed eagle of the czarist empire with a giant hammer.

‘A Hot Stone’ is a slow and boring film, but it’s also beautifully designed, in an original graphic style, which makes use of bold ink strokes.

Watch ‘A Hot Stone’ yourself and tell me what you think:

‘A Hot Stone’ is available on the DVD box set ‘Animated Soviet Propaganda’

Director: Hawley Pratt
Release Date: December 14, 1965
Stars: The Pink Panther
Rating: ★★★
Review:

Bully for Pink © DePatie-FrelengIn ‘Bully for Pink’, the Pink Panther wants to be a bull fighter and so he steals a magical cape to use it as a red sheet.

‘Bully for Pink’ is slightly funnier than contemporary Pink Panther cartoons, but it doesn’t come near the heights of bullfight cartoons like Tex Avery’s ‘Señor Droopy’ (1949) or Chuck Jones’s ‘Bully for Bugs’ (1953).

Watch ‘Bully for Pink’ yourself and tell me what you think:

Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: June 9, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★★★★
Review:

The Year of the Mouse © MGMDirector Chuck Jones and writer Michael Maltese reuse their story idea from their classic Warner Brothers cartoon ‘Mouse Wreckers‘ (1949), with Jerry and an anonymous mouse replacing Hubie and Bertie, and Tom replacing Claude Cat.

Like in the former cartoon, the two mice try to convince the unhappy cat he’s insane. The gags are different, though, as is the ending, for unlike Claude Cat, Tom gets his torturers and punishes them in the end.

Although ‘Mouse Wreckers‘ is much to be preferred above ‘The Year of the Mouse’, the inspired story works once again, and results in one of the better Tom & Jerry cartoons by Chuck Jones’s unit.

Watch ‘The Year of the Mouse’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 142
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: Tom Thump
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: The Cat’s Me-ouch

http://www.supercartoons.net/cartoon/437/tom-jerry-the-year-of-the-mouse.html

Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: May 19, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★★★
Review:

Of Feline Bondage © MGMIn ‘Of Feline Bondage’ Jerry, whose life is made miserable by the sadistic Tom, is visited by a mouse fairy who gives him a potion that makes him invisible.

Jerry uses his invisibility to hunt Tom around the house with some scissors, cutting up Tom. However, he gets the same treatment from Tom when he gets visible again. The results are so ridiculous, the two laugh their heads off. Fade out…

‘Of Feline Bondage’ is a rather weak cartoon, despite some nice typical Chuck Jones expressions on both Tom and Jerry.

Watch ‘Of Feline Bondage’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 140
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: I’m Just Wild About Jerry
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: Tom Thump

Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: April 7, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★★★½
Review:

I'm Just Wild About Jerry © MGM‘I’m Just Wild About Jerry’ is a chase cartoon taking place in a department store. It’s Jones’ fifth Tom & Jerry chase cartoon, ending a mini-series of chase cartoons within Chuck Jones’s Tom & Jerry series.

Although not hilarious, ‘I’m Just Wild About Jerry’ is particularly inspired, and arguably the best of the five. It contains a great gag in which Tom deftly catches a falling pot, but not the bowling ball that follows after. It also contains a running gag involving a streetcar.

Watch ‘I’m Just Wild About Jerry’ yourself and tell me what you think:

http://www.izlesem.org/tom-and-jerry-i-m-just-wild-about-jerry-19651.html

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 139
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: Haunted Mouse
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: Of Feline Bondage

Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: March 24, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★★★
Review:

Haunted Mouse © MGMNot to be confused with the 1941 Tex Avery cartoon ‘The Haunted Mouse’,  this cartoon interrupts the string of chase cartoons by featuring a real story: Jerry is visited by his cousin(?), a Mandrake-like magician, who easily defeats Tom.

Less funny than the remotely similar ‘Jerry’s Cousin‘ (1951), this rather slow cartoon nevertheless features a hilarious scene in which the magician mouse remains an über-cool, deadpan expression while being caught by a sardonically laughing Tom. It also features some rather Dr. Seuss-like rabbits.

Watch ‘Haunted Mouse’ yourself and tell me what you think:

http://www.220.ro/desene-animate/Tom-And-Jerry-Haunted-Mouse/f6HoGrlyGO/

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 138
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: The Brothers Carry-Mouse-Off
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: I’m Just Wild About Jerry

Director: Jim Pabian
Release Date: March 3, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★
Review:

The Brothers Carry-Mouse-off © MGM‘The Brothers Carry-Mouse-Off’, its literary title notwithstanding, is Chuck Jones’ fourth Tom & Jerry chase cartoon using blackout gags, this time indoors.

This was the first of the Chuck Jones Tom & Jerries not directed by Chuck Jones himself, and it shows. The designs and the animation are worse than in other entries. Especially Jerry is badly designed here. The music is also particularly uninspired. All this results in one of the weakest entries in the series.

About its director, Jim Pabian, little is known. He co-wrote this cartoon and the next, ‘Haunted Mouse’,with Chuck Jones. ‘The Brothers Carry-Mouse-Off’ is the only cartoon he ever directed.

Watch ‘The Brothers Carry-Mouse-Off’ yourself and tell me what you think:

http://www.veoh.com/watch/v20008062MnN6BagS

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 137
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: Bad Day at Cat Rock
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: Haunted Mouse

Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: February 10, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★★★
Review:

Bad Day At Cat Rock © MGM‘Bad Day at Cat Rock’ is a third chase cartoon with blackout gags, this time on a building site.

Although it is one of the weaker chase cartoons, this cartoon features particularly nice opening credits and a very funny Road Runner-like series of gags in which Tom tries to launch himself numerous times using a boulder. Unfortunately, it ends abruptly, when Jerry draws an end to the cartoon.

Watch ‘Bad Day at Cat Rock’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 136
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: Tom-ic Energy
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: The Brothers Carry-Mouse-Off

Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: January 27, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★★★
Review:

Tom-ic Energy © MGM‘Tom-ic Energy’ is Chuck Jones’s second Tom & Jerry chase cartoon with blackout gags, this time situated in the city streets.

The short contains elements from two of Chuck Jones’ earlier series: Road Runner and Pepe Le Pew. It’s fast, it’s well-animated, its music (by Eugene Poddany) is not bad, and yet, it never becomes really funny. It’s difficult to tell why not.

Watch ‘Tom-ic Energy’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 135
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: Ah, Sweet Mouse Story of Life
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: Bad Day at Cat Rock

Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: January 20, 1965
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Rating: ★★★
Review:

Ah, Sweet Mouse Story of Life © MGM‘Ah, Sweet Mouse Story of Life’ is the first of a short series of five classic chase cartoons with blackout gags, resembling Chuck Jones’ own Road Runner series.

The gags are good, but somehow surprisingly unfunny at the same time. Most remarkably, this cartoon revives an ancient cartoon power, frequently used by Felix the cat in the twenties: the ability to use one’s question marks and thoughts.

Watch ‘Ah, Sweet Mouse Story of Life’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Tom & Jerry cartoon No. 134
To the previous Tom & Jerry cartoon: The Unshrinkable Jerry Mouse
To the next Tom & Jerry cartoon: Tom-ic Energy

Director: Jiří Trnka
Release Date: 1965
Rating: ★★★★★ ♕
Review:

The Hand © Jiri TrnkaIn a self-contained world, seemingly outside space and time, an harlequin lives happily in his home.

The harlequin is an artist, a ceramist and a sculptor, making pots for his beloved plant. Unfortunately, his domestic peace is disturbed by a giant gloved hand, which orders him to sculpt a statue of a hand. As the harlequin keeps refusing, the hand uses praise, money, indoctrination, brutal force and erotics to persuade the artist to do what he’s ordered.

In the end the harlequin is caught, his hands are attached to strings worked by the hand, and he has to sculpt a giant hand in a cage. But, after finishing his works, the artist escapes and returns to his beloved home. It sadly is his own beloved plant that kills him by falling on his head, while he’s barricading the entrances to his room. The hand gives the artist a state funeral, making him posthumously part of the system.

‘The Hand’ was Czech puppet animator Jiří Trnka’s last film, and it was to be his masterpiece. Instead of diving into classic tales, he made one of his own, resulting in a most personal film and one that stands as the classic animated tale on totalitarianism.

Trnka manages to tell his tale without any dialogue. Although the puppet of the harlequin knows only one expression, his emotions are well-felt through his animation. There’s no doubt he’s symbolic for artists working in totalitarian regimes in general. The glove is a masterstroke. In its facelessness it is as scary as it is symbolic for the invisible hand of totalitarian power. The result is an equally sad and disturbing film, which shows both Trnka’s genius and the power of animation in general.

It’s no small surprise that this highly symbolic film was forbidden in communist Czechoslovakia.

‘The Hand’s message is still topical, being symbolic for artists working in oppressive regimes all over the world.

Watch ‘The Hand’ yourself and tell me what you think:

 

‘The Hand’ is available on the DVD ‘The Puppet Films of Jiri Trnka’

Director: Jan Švankmajer
Release Date: 1965
Rating: ★★★★
Review:

A Game With Stones © Jan SvankmajerIn ‘A Game with Stones’ (also known by its German title ‘Spiel mit Steinen’) an odd construction, consisting of a clock, a tap and a bucket, produces stones by the hour. These stones form patterns to the music of a music box until the bucket is emptied, dropping the stones on the floor.

The stones’ abstract patterns are indeed game-like, but they become more and more grim, ending in a destructive game, destroying the stones, and eventually, the bucket, leaving the machine useless. The game is over. It is Švankmajer’s genius that he’s able to give this fairly abstract film a heart and an unsettling, sad ending.

‘A Game with Stones’ is Švankmajer’s first film to use stop motion animation extensively. The fourth game contains faces made of numerous small pebbles, which anticipates similar heads in ‘Dimensions of Dialogue’ (1982), a film in which Švankmajer’s stop motion techniques reach a stunning apex.

Watch ‘A Game with Stones’ yourself and tell me what you think:

‘A Game with Stones’ is available on the DVD ‘Jan Svankmajer – The Complete Short Films’

Director: Bruno Bozzetto
Release Date: October 1, 1965
Rating: ★★★
Review:

West And Soda © Bruno Bozzetto‘West And Soda’ has a classic Western story: an evil villain is after the land owned by the lovely Clementine. Luckily she is rescued by our cool hero, Johnny, who doesn’t talk much, but who can shoot!

‘West and Soda’ is Bruno Bozzetto’s first feature film and unfortunately, it shows. The Italian animator is at his best in short, well-timed pantomime gags, and he clearly has difficulties with this longer medium. Neither the animation nor the designs are particularly appealing, and the feature suffers a little from its length. Generously mocking almost every aspect of the classic western, ‘West and Soda’ is as silly as it is predictable. Luckily there are many throwaway gags to keep the viewer laughing from time to time.

However, Bozzetto’s comic genius really shines through in two offbeat scenes, in which Bozzetto does what he does best: like his funny short ‘I Due Castelli’ from 1963, these two scenes use a fixed long distance perspective, pantomimed action and a perfect timing, with hilarious results. The first of these two scenes shows us several failing attacks of ferocious ants on Johnny, who is buried up to his head in the desert. The second depicts the villain’s attempts to drop a huge rock on our hero.

Watch the ant scene from ‘West And Soda’ yourself and tell me what you think:

Director: Friz Freleng
Release Date: August 25, 1965
Stars: The Pink Panther
Rating: ★★★★★
Review:

The Pink Tail Fly © DePatie-FrelengAfter a long evening of watching television, a tired Pink Panther tries to sleep, but he’s hindered by a small but annoying mosquito.

‘The Pink Tail Fly’ is one of the better entries in the Pink Panther series, and a worthy addition to the sleeplessness cartoon canon, being able to compete with cartoons like the Woody Woodpecker cartoon ‘Coo-Coo Bird’ and the Donald Duck cartoon ‘Sleepy Time Donald’ (both from 1947). It contains several good gags, which build up to a great finale. The highlight may be the gag in which the Pink Panther tries to kill the mosquito using karate.

‘The Pink Tail Fly’ was the last Pink Panther film to be directed by Friz Freleng himself.

Watch ‘The Pink Tail Fly’ yourself and tell me what you think:

Director: Friz Freleng
Release Date: June 10, 1965
Stars: The Pink Panther
Rating: ★
Review:

Pink Ice © DePatie-FrelengIn ‘Pink Ice’, the Pink Panther is reunited with what he was named after: diamonds. In this film the Pink Panther owns a diamond mine, which is stolen by two colonial Englishmen.

‘Pink Ice’ is a perfect example of how the DePatie-Freleng Studios struggled to hit the right mark in the early Pink Panther films. In ‘Pink Ice’ the Pink Panther behaves particularly unfamiliar. Not only does he wear a dressing-gown throughout the picture, but he talks, and a lot, too. As was to be expected, it’s not a success. The film is vaguely reminiscent of some of Friz Freleng’s Bugs Bunny-Yosemite Sam outings, but its abundant use of dialogue is annoying, resulting in a weak entry in the series. Luckily, this experiment with a talking Pink Panther was not to be repeated.

Watch ‘Pink Ice’ yourself and tell me what you think:

Director: Friz Freleng
Release Date: April 12, 1965
Stars: The Pink Panther
Rating: ★★½
Review:

Sink Pink © DePatie-Freleng

In ‘Sink Pink’ a Texan hunter builds an ark to lure the animals of the savannah into it.

Sink Pink is the Pink Panther’s fifth film and the first to use dialogue. Unfortunately it’s a bad addition. The Texan hunter’s constant jabbering distracts from the pantomime humor. In the end even the Pink Panther himself speaks, which is even a worse idea. Nevertheless, ‘Sink Pink’ is noteworthy because it’s also the first film in which the Pink Panther shows his unique walk.

Watch ‘Sink Pink’ yourself and tell me what you think:

Director: Friz Freleng
Release Date: March 17, 1965
Stars: The Pink Panther
Rating: ★★★★★
Review:

Dial P For Pink © DePatie-Freleng‘Dial “P” for Pink’, the Pink Panther’s fourth film, has nothing to do with calling on a phone. Instead, we see a burglar trying to crack a safe. Oddly enough, this safe is in habited by the Pink Panther.

This extraordinary, but very simple idea is worked out perfectly into a tight plot (by Bob Kurtz), which matches that of ‘The Pink Phink‘ (1964).

‘Dial “P” For Pink’ is the first Pink Panther film to use music from the Pink Panther live action film ‘A shot in the dark’ (1964). Besides the familiar Pink Panther theme, this would become the background music for practically every Pink Panther short to come.

Watch ‘Dial “P” For Pink’ yourself and tell me what you think:

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