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Private eye Goofy gets your man

6/10
Author: Thomas (filmreviews@web.de) from Berlin, Germany
17 September 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

While I believe that Disney had already peaked way before this short film was made, I believe that the Goofy "How-to"-series is one of the funniest animation from the 1950s. This one does not come close to my favorite "How to dance", but it still makes an entertaining seven minutes.

A damsel in distress comes to Detective Goofy paying and asking him to find a mysterious man named Al. And as Goofy starts roaming the streets, gets in a car chase and is a even involved in a shootout until he finally finds the missing character, the viewer gets a couple good laughs. It's a funny little film and they managed to wittily spoof all the factors a good crime mystery needs. It's almost a Chinatown version in short animated form.

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Goofy as a private eye...

10/10
Author: TheLittleSongbird from United Kingdom
1 August 2012

How to be a Detective has to be one of my favourite Goofy and Disney shorts. It is extremely violent at times(for 1952 especially), which is unusual for Goofy and Disney. However seeing as it is a spoof on the detective mystery genre, this gritty noir approach was not inappropriate in any way and only added to the authenticity of the period. Regardless of whether you are deterred by that or not, there is still much to love from other Goofy shorts here. There is fast pacing and very funny gags, and I loved some of the details like Goofy underwater with a weight on his feet and Goofy drinking a Martini. The mystery elements are also done really well, with suspense and a great atmosphere that feels like you had travelled back in time. The animation is beautifully drawn with the colours colourful and really fitting with the mood, and the music is both jaunty and haunting. Goofy is as likable and endearingly clumsy as ever, even in a different persona there is that unique personality shining through, and it was nice to see Pete in a good guy role for once. The voice acting is very good, with the narration as thoughtfully delivered and sardonic as you'd expect. Overall, one of Disney and Goofy's best and great for anybody into animation, detective mystery stories or both(I apply to both). 10/10 Bethany Cox

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The Goof Is On The Case

10/10
Author: Ron Oliver (revilorest@juno.com) from Forest Ranch, CA
26 April 2003

A Walt Disney GOOFY Cartoon.

Hired by a veiled female, the Goof illustrates the finer points of HOW TO BE A DETECTIVE while searching for the mysterious Al.

While at first blush this may seem to be another in the long series of Goofy's 'educational' shorts, this cartoon is actually a lively spoof of detective films and the happy nonsense with which they are filled. Goofy plays Johnny Eyeball, a Sam Spade wannabe; Pete appears as Muldoon the cop.

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 will always pay off.

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