Gold Rush Daze (1939) Poster

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Not a classic, but it could give you a chuckle
Electrified_Voltage28 July 2007
For a while, when I was very young, watching animated shorts from the 1930s and '40s on video was a regular hobby for me. Watching many of these cartoons over a decade later, some of them don't do anything for me anymore, while others I still find amusing, even if they don't do as much for me as they did way back. "Gold Rush Daze" is one of the latter. When I watched this 1939 cartoon for the first time in many years, I was mildly disappointed. However, I have watched it several more times since then, and have found it just slightly funnier.

A man stops at a gas station. He very quickly and anxiously tells the man who runs the station to put some gas in his car, and is asked why he is in such a hurry. He tells the station owner that he's about to dig for gold. The station owner then laughs and tells him that it's a useless idea, since there's no gold to be found, no matter where one searches. He then then begins to tell the man in the car the story of his long, troubled search for gold back in 1849, as we are shown in flashback.

Some cartoons from around this time may still be considered classics today, while others have been forgotten. Since it appears that no one else has commented on "Gold Rush Daze" on IMDb yet, it's obviously one of the more obscure ones of its time. I can understand this, as it's not very memorable, and may be a bit dated. However, I've definitely seen much worse excuses for comedy. This short does have some reasonable slapstick gags, and could be enjoyable for fans of these old cartoons, especially kids. I'm not quite sure about the availability of this Merrie Melodies piece right now, but for hardcore fans of these old animated shorts, it might be worth looking for.
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Doesn't quite strike gold
TheLittleSongbird12 January 2018
Love animation, it was a big part of my life as a child, particularly Disney, Looney Tunes and Tom and Jerry, and still love it whether it's film, television or cartoons.

Despite what my review title may insinuate, 'Gold Rush Daze' is far from a bad cartoon. It's in no way a classic and there are far better cartoons that are funnier and with more memorable characters, but it is not deserving of its relative obscurity status. It is not hard to see why 'Gold Rush Daze' won't click with some.

'Gold Rush Daze' is an amusing cartoon but it is never hilarious (maybe there could have been more too), and a few parts don't hold up as well as they could and date things a bit. The characters in no way bring down the cartoon but they are easily forgettable.

The story is as flimsy as they come and it does lack energy in parts.

However, the animation is very good. It's colourful in a sumptuous way, meticulous in background detail, crisp, beautifully drawn and fluid in movement. Carl Stalling's music is outstanding. It is as always lushly orchestrated, full of lively energy and characterful in rhythm, not only adding to the action but also enhancing it.

'Gold Rush Daze' as said is mostly amusing and explores its subject in a lively and charming fashion. The momentum generally is there and the characters at least have personality even if not distinctive. Mel Blanc's voice work can't be faulted.

In conclusion, strike gold 'Gold Rush Daze' doesn't but it's far from a misfire. 6/10 Bethany Cox
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Alright, but poorly animated
nodogthebest25 November 2017
Gold Rush Daze is a cartoon directed by the duo of Ben Hardaway and Cal Dalton. We go back to the time period of San Francisco's gold rush in 1849, via a flashback. Rather early on in the short, there's a person who wants to scam the protagonist with a card game. A rather weird moment, because this scene contributes practically nothing to the plot. The rest of the short has the protagonist frantically searching for gold. There's also a song that just seems to serve as an obligatory musical number.

Although the short can seem to be a bit slow at times, the pacing can be rather energetic. The jokes are decent, and there are a few funny moments in here, although some of them fall flat on their back. Other than those flaws, I felt that the animation felt extremely stiff and lifeless at times. Lumped with all the stiff scenes, are a few decent scenes, but the bad animation outweighs the good.

Overall, Gold Rush Daze is an odd cartoon. It's interesting to watch, at least.
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This Warner Bros.' parable focuses on the Futility of Finding Fool's Gold . . .
Edgar Allan Pooh20 April 2017
Warning: Spoilers
. . . among the swindling Fat Cat One Per Center Corrupt Job-Killing Corporate Capitalists dotting our American landscape. Most of this animated short is presented in flashback form, tracing the sorry money-grubbing obsessions of the grizzled old-timer serving as proprietor of the "Last Chance" desert gas station. Rather than keeping in step with the times by adding a cafe, convenience store, motel, and repair shop, this lazy windbag has allowed his property to go to seed, content to fret over the pathetic not-so-glorious days of his prospecting Youth, as recounted during the middle six minutes of this brief cartoon. From the card shark in a San Francisco saloon (who sizes him up as a literal sucker) to the plethora of organized claim jumpers utilizing a variety of Big Business Tricks to prevent him from having any chance at even modest success, this ill-fated dog NEVER learns a single new trick. His sad saga wraps up with his Grand Larceny Auto Theft from the paws of another would-be sap, as he yells "You can have the station!" This is Warner Bros.' way of reminding viewers that without Union Representation and a lot of Hard Work, We Normal Loyal True Blue Patriotic Average Americans ALWAYS will be relegated to a lowly Loserville stationery "Station" in Life.
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In the archive
suchenwi22 July 2010
Warning: Spoilers
As neither the first commenter nor IMDb point it out, let me add a notice that this film, as well of many thousands others, is in the public domain and can be legitimately streamed or downloaded from The Internet Archive (just enter the title in the search box).

This particular cartoon isn't very much to write home about. It briefly sketches the various gold rushes of the 19th century, and gives some artists' impressions on how the actual gold-digging work was done. Decently done, and sometimes amusing.

I downloaded the 512kb MPEG4 version, which has vivid colors, but somewhat blurry contours on a 1024x600 netbook screen. Still, a nice old short, if you're interested in the history of popular culture. :)
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