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Director: Rudolf Ising
Release Date: September 5, 1931
Stars: Foxy
Rating: ★★★

Smile, Darn ya, Smile © Warner Bros.‘Smile, Darn Ya, Smile!’, the second of the Merrie Melodies, is also the second to feature that short-lived early star of Warner Bros., Foxy.

The film is practically a remake of Oswald’s first cartoon, ‘Trolley Troubles’ (1927), on which Harman and Ising had worked themselves: Foxy rides a trolley, inviting his very, very Minnie Mouse-like girlfriend along. Like in the former Oswald film, the ride ends with Foxy losing control of the trolley, which leads to some spectacular perspective animation. Unlike the earlier film, however, ‘Smile, Darn ya, Smile!’ ends rather cornily, when it’s revealed it was all a dream.

The title song is sung several times during the cartoon, e.g. by four hobos. It was revived more than fifty years later in ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit?‘ (1988), when Eddie Valiant enters Toontown.

Watch ‘Smile, Darn Ya, Smile’ yourself and tell me what you think:

‘Smile, Darn Ya, Smile’ is available on the DVD ‘Looney Tunes Golden Collection Volume Six’

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

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:

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: Winsor McCay
Production Date: ca. 1918-1921
Stars: Gertie the Dinosaur
Rating: ★★½

Still from 'Gertie on Tour' featuring Gertie the dinosaur and a streetcar

‘Gertie on Tour’ is but a short fragment from an unfinished and unreleased film featuring the prehistoric star from ‘Gertie the Dinosaur‘ (1914).

In this excerpt Gertie lives in the modern world: she plays with a frog and with a streetcar, then she dreams she’s back in the Mesozoic, dancing for her dinosaur friends.

‘Gertie On Tour’, like almost all sequels, cannot compare to the first film. Nevertheless, it’s nice to see slightly more footage of this sympathetic brontosaur. The dancing scene in particular catches her playful spirit. Like ‘The Centaurs‘, this short contains very beautiful and elaborate backgrounds, which, undoubtedly thanks to the invention of the cell, are a great improvement over the backgrounds in ‘Gertie The Dinosaur’, which had to be retraced over and over again for each single frame.

Watch ‘Gertie on Tour’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Winsor McCay’s sixth film
To Winsor McCay’s fifth, unfinished film: The Centaurs
To Winsor McCay’s seventh, unfinished film: Flip’s Circus

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