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Donald is another name for disaster. Why do you think Cockney rhyming
slang uses Donald Duck for bad luck? In this cartoon Donald is a Fire
Chief and his nephews his staff. Being such an incompetent leader he
soon sets fire to the station-house itself and cannot save it for the
life of him. Whether tackling raging hoses, falling through the sky or
pumping gasoline into fire Donald suffers the worst of everything as
Huey, Duey and Louie duck (pun intended) for cover.
The cartoon features some cuteness not often found in Disney shorts. I never really believed that was something he ever intended. The vivid animation always seems to be first and imaginative mayhem second. This short has all three.
Donald Duck is the fire chief in a department manned by him and his
nephews, Huey, Louie and Dewey.
The cartoon short is in magnificent Technicolour and is good fun for a Disney short.
The nephews are upset by Donald's snoring and the mischievous trio set off the fire alarm. Donald's bumbling soon causes more disasters which includes putting the hose on the gasoline tank before hosing the a burning building.
The result; pretty soon everything is up in flames including Donald's own hat.
Poor Donald, those nephews are certainly a handful.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Donald is one of my favourite characters ever, and I like his nephews Huey, Dewey and Louie very much too, rascally but endearing. Fire Chief is one of their best collaborations. What really makes it so good is the gags, the one where Donald pulls out of the firehouse to chase the fire, not realising that it is in the firehouse he just left behind is very funny and almost reminiscent of something Goofy would do but with Donald. Fire Chief's gags are at their best with Donald's best efforts to put out the fire, the best being, especially for Donald's priceless facial expressions, when the boys extend the ladder, and it snaps, sending Donald off into the air. Donald swimming along the stream of the water hose, the water building up from a knot in the hose then exploding, Donald flying into a bicycle shop and coming out pedalling a tricycle are just a few of many laugh-a-minute gags, and Donald's "You can't win. You just can't win" does make you feel sorry for him. Donald is just wonderful, he always was at his best while he got easily frustrated at what was going on around him and here is a great example of him at his finest. He is well partnered by his nephews, who also work well with what they're best at. Add to that beautiful animation, a sometimes cute(with the nephews' prank on Donald at the beginning) and often thrilling story, catchy music and well-placed sound effects and you have a brilliant cartoon. 10/10 Bethany Cox
A Walt Disney DONALD DUCK Cartoon.
Donald Duck, the FIRE CHIEF of Hook & Ladder Company 13, manages to start a roaring conflagration in his own engine house.
Donald gets himself into trouble yet again - with able assistance from Huey, Dewey & Louie - in this well-animated little film. There is a good chance that viewers who have suffered a devastating fire will not find this cartoon very amusing. The story was written by the legendary Carl Barks; Clarence Nash provides the voices for the entire Duck clan.
Walt Disney (1901-1966) was always intrigued by pictures & drawings. As a lad in Marceline, Missouri, he sketched farm animals on scraps of paper; later, as an ambulance driver in France during the First World War, he drew comic figures on the sides of his vehicle. Back in Kansas City, along with artist Ub Iwerks, Walt developed a primitive animation studio that provided animated commercials and tiny cartoons for the local movie theaters. Always the innovator, his ALICE IN CARTOONLAND series broke ground in placing a live figure in a cartoon universe. Business reversals sent Disney & Iwerks to Hollywood in 1923, where Walt's older brother Roy became his lifelong business manager & counselor. When a mildly successful series with Oswald The Lucky Rabbit was snatched away by the distributor, the character of Mickey Mouse sprung into Walt's imagination, ensuring Disney's immortality. The happy arrival of sound technology made Mickey's screen debut, STEAMBOAT WILLIE (1928), a tremendous audience success with its use of synchronized music. The SILLY SYMPHONIES soon appeared, and Walt's growing crew of marvelously talented animators were quickly conquering new territory with full color, illusions of depth and radical advancements in personality development, an arena in which Walt's genius was unbeatable. Mickey's feisty, naughty behavior had captured millions of fans, but he was soon to be joined by other animated companions: temperamental Donald Duck, intellectually-challenged Goofy and energetic Pluto. All this was in preparation for Walt's grandest dream - feature length animated films. Against a blizzard of doomsayers, Walt persevered and over the next decades delighted children of all ages with the adventures of Snow White, Pinocchio, Dumbo, Bambi & Peter Pan. Walt never forgot that his fortunes were all started by a mouse, or that childlike simplicity of message and lots of hard work always pay off.
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