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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
With having greatly enjoyed the Disney Goofy short film Tiger Trouble,I
decided to put on my hunting shoes,and set off with Goofy for his
second "jungle" adventure.
Returning from his game hunting adventure in Africa,Goofy begins to read his diary,as he starts to think the less than easy going animals that he met (and came face to face with) on his adventure.
View on the film:
Whilst the screenplay of the movie never gives a precise motive as to why Goofy is going on this adventure,writer Bill Peet gives the movie a fresh,double-meaning edge that allows for jokes aimed at adult viewers in the audience to be included in the movie,with two of the best scenes in the title being a guide to the "different" animals in the jungle,and Goofy also desperately searching round for a permit that will allow him to kill a rhino.
For the first Goofy short to open with the Disney logo,director Jack Kinney disappointingly shows clear signs that the film was made on a tight budget,with the first few minutes of the movie being shown from a sky-high angle,so that only limited animation needed to be done,and Goofy's narration weirdly being voiced by someone who sounds nothing like Goofy,despite it being mentioned at the start of the title that Goofy is reading his diary,so as to bring back memories of his second jungle adventure.
Most of the Disney How to...shorts with Goofy are classics and among the best they've done. African Diary is not among their best and I couldn't help feeling a pang of disappointment, but it is decent enough. The story is a little thin and routine, the ending is too abrupt and while there are legitimately funny moments that level is not consistent throughout African Diary. But when the short is funny, particularly with Goofy's very fast-dressing scene, it is very funny. The part with the rhino at the end was also a good touch, though could have been more rounded off. The animation is bright and colourful and flows well from one frame to the next with no awkwardness. The touch with the safari rolling by and then stopping was also nicely done. The music has a lot of character and the orchestration is beautiful. African Diary also has an interesting twist on the usual narration format of the How to...series, with Goofy taking on the narrator role, with his words coming out of his diary, as well as the other multiple characters in the short. It does work, it shows Goofy's versatility as he shows he can do lots of roles and still be him too, doing it this way also avoids the risk of political incorrectness. Goofy is as appealing and energetic as ever, and the narration is thoughtful with some witty quips, though the interaction between it and Goofy has been stronger in other shorts and it also doesn't teach quite as much. All in all, decent but not great, worth a look but not a must see. 7/10 Bethany Cox
This short only stars Goofy on a safari in Africa. His diary tells us how they travel and one day they cross a pool which they and other animals use to drink from. The next day Goofy also takes a swim in the pool, a funny sequence. The day after that he goes on a little field trip with one of his boys and they come face to face with a big rhino. It is a funny cartoon but not a great one. 7/10.
In this cartoon, Goofy keeps a diary about his trip to the dark continent of Africa. The boat he is travelling on reaches the ivory coast (made out of piano keys) and he sets up camp. About the only action in this short was the scene where Goofy and a fellow hunter (a Goofy look-alike) go hunting on the African savanna. They encounter a rhino who charges after them. There was a scene where Goofy points a gun at the rhino and then checks to see if he has a permit to shoot (this bit has been deleted due to it not being politically correct). One part I thought was funny was where Goofy was narrating his diary and telling us about the different animals that came up to the waterhole by his camp for a drink. One of them happened to be none other than Goofy himself. Great short, but I think I would've liked it better if it had not been edited.
By the way, although the story is supposedly narrated by Goofy, the voice is of a normal person--not Pinto Colvig or George Johnson (the original voices of Goofy). This was yet another one of Disney's 'how to' videos starring Goofy. Unfortunately, this is not one of the better ones and finds Goofy on the African Savannah--but unfortunately, it's not particularly funny or inspired. And, oddly, the story is quite weak and the short ends all too abruptly. I was waiting for something interesting to happen...then, suddenly, the credits started rolling! By the way, goofy refers to his African porter as his 'boy'. Hmmm....not exactly politically correct, Walt--but it was the 1940s.
A Walt Disney GOOFY Cartoon.
Goofy's AFRICAN DIARY tells of his misadventures with some of the continent's most dangerous game.
This humorous little film provides several chuckles as Goofy tries to act like a Great White Hunter. The depiction of the safari as tiny dots racing over a landscaped map of Africa is especially amusing, as is the sophisticated narration which is completely at variance with the on-screen action. The story was written by Bill Peet, later to become a celebrated children's author.
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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