A mouse tells the story of how he guided Benjamin Franklin to success and prominence.

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(original story), (story) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Amos Mouse (voice)
...
Tom Jefferson / Crook (voice)
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Storyline

Amos, a poor church mouse, sets out to find work, since his family of 26 is starving. He's rejected by several places and takes refuge in the run-down print shop of Ben Franklin. Quickly, he gives Ben the ideas for the Franklin stove, bifocal lenses, and the newspaper the Pennsylvania Gazette as Ben's creditors are threatening to shut him down in 24 hours. The paper is an instant hit and Ben prospers. With Amos hidden in his hat prompting him, Ben seems much brighter than he is. However, when Amos is attached to Ben's kite and gets hit by lighting, he leaves. Later, in the summer of 1776, Ben is desperate and begs Amos to return. He agrees but only if Ben will sign a contract. The next day, as they are beginning their talks, Thomas Jefferson drops by for help with the wording the opening of the Declaration of Independence, and as Ben reads the opening words of the contract, Jefferson says, "That's it!" Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

10 November 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ben i ja  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When originally released to theaters, this 21-minute cartoon short was double billed with the Walt Disney film The Living Desert (1953) as a 90-minute package deal. This and "The Living Desert" were the first to be released by Buena Vista. RKO continued to distribute Disney's cartoons until 1956. RKO shut down in 1957. See more »

Goofs

Benjamin Franklin was not the founder of the Pennsylvania Gazette, which predated Poor Richard's Almanack and was not the same publication under another name. He bought the Gazette in 1729 and published it until 1766 when it was bought by other publishers. Poor Richard's Almanack, which ran from 1732 to 1758, was a publication unrelated to the Gazette, and ran concurrently with it. See more »

Quotes

[after Amos is nearly killed during the kite experiment]
Ben Franklin: Amos, speak to me. Was it electricity?
Amos Mouse: Was it electricity?
[shouting, with lightning coming out of his mouth]
Amos Mouse: WAS IT ELECTRICITY? Goodbye! Goodbye, and forever!
See more »

Connections

Featured in DTV: Golden Oldies (1984) See more »

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User Reviews

 
An animated treasure and unfairly neglected...
11 August 2014 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Well, not as neglected as it was but Ben and Me is still one of Disney's most under-appreciated short films. And unjustly, because it is a treasure. It's animated beautifully, all the characters are well drawn, with a couple that are reminiscent of a couple from Disney's Cinderella(like a cat that looks like Lucifer) and it is hard not to admire the sumptuousness of the backgrounds. There is a music score that brims with energy too, and the dialogue has humour that amuses and it educates as well. The story is probably Ben and Me's biggest strength, it is cute without being too cutesy, it is good-natured in its funny parts and very warm-hearted. It is also very educational and there is a great lesson to be learnt without showing any signs of preaching, even at the end when we see how the declaration of independence comes about. The characters have engaging personalities and are in no way superfluous to the story, they are easy to relate to as well. Ben and Me is also brilliantly voiced, particularly by Sterling Holloway as mouse Amos who has the lion's share of the written material as well(considering that the story is told from his viewpoint). His voice-work is warm, witty and moves the storytelling forward rather than trying to over-explain(like a few shorts with Holloway narrating, The Pelican and the Snipe comes to mind). I prefer Hans Conried in villain roles but he is very distinguished here and like Holloway you recognise his voice immediately. Charles Ruggles is very endearing as Ben. So all in all, an animated treasure that ought be better known. 10/10 Bethany Cox


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