8.3/10
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47 user 4 critic

What's Opera, Doc? (1957)

Approved | | Animation, Short, Comedy | 6 July 1957 (USA)
Elmer Fudd is again hunting rabbits - only this time it's an opera. Wagner's Siegfried with Elmer as the titular hero and Bugs as Brunnhilde. They sing, they dance, they eat the scenery.

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Storyline

"What's Opera, Doc?" lampoons classic opera by using its elements to set up the latest chapter in Elmer Fudd's hapless pursuit of Bugs Bunny. We open with a silhouette of a mighty Viking arousing ferocious lightning storms ... only to find it's Elmer -- this time as the demigod Siegfried. Elmer admonishes the audience (in classical verse) to "be vewwy quiet, I'm hunting wabbits!" It's not long before Elmer comes upon Bugs' hole and sings out "Kill the wabbit!" not realizing that the hare has already climbed out and is viewing Elmer spearing fruitlessly in said hole. Bugs joins in the fun, querying his tagline in operatic verse and leaving Elmer in his dust (but not before "Siegfried" shows us an example of supposed "mighty powers" from his spear and magic helmet). Elmer goes after the wascally wabbit, but his pursuit is ended when he sets his eyes on the stunningly and awesomely beautiful Valkyrie Brunhilde (Bugs in disguise). After a "hard-to-get" pursuit" (brought on by Elmer's ... Written by Brian Rathjen <briguy_52732@yahoo.com>

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Plot Keywords:

opera | storm | hunting | lightning | wind | See All (56) »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

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6 July 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cane all'Opera  »

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1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Warner Bros. Cartoons, Inc. only allotted five weeks for the production of each seven-minute short, but director Chuck Jones spent seven weeks on this short. To cover up for the extra time spent, he had his entire unit doctor their time cards to make it appear as if they working on the Road Runner/Coyote short Zoom and Bored (1957) for two weeks before they actually started (since Chuck and his staff were so familiar with the Road Runner formula, they were able to complete Zoom and Bored in three weeks). See more »

Goofs

Bugs sits in a long fuzzy chair and opens his toes. See more »

Quotes

Elmer Fudd as Siegfried: Oh, what have I done? / I've killed the wabbit / Poor wittle bunny / Poor wittle wabbit.
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Crazy Credits

The opera music continues and concludes over the "That's All Folks!" logo, substituting the usual exit music. The "That's All Folks" text doesn't go through its usual animation. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mr. Belvedere: Gorgeous George (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Overture from 'The Flying Dutchman'
Composed by Richard Wagner (uncredited)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Not hilarious, but stylish, intelligent, funny and very well put to the music
7 March 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

In the style of a classic opera, Elmer Fudd, resplendent with magic helmet, seeks to kill the rabbit Bugs Bunny. However, dressing as an opera dame, Bugs attempts to outsmart and avoid Fudd the best he can. However, can he make the ruse last.

In terms of laughs, this is by no means Bugs's funniest cartoon. However it is easily one of my favourites of his simply because it is not a basic chase-em-up style comedy that relies on physical gags. In fact the reason I love this cartoon is part of the reason it isn't funny - simply because it is almost too clever to waste time making me roar with easy laughs. The plot is perfectly set to the music and it is surprisingly emotional for it. Bugs does his usual dressing up stuff but the music gives it all an edge it hasn't had before - and it is very interesting.

My favourite thing about this short is the style with which it is delivered. Look at some of the WB cartoons of the mid-sixties and you'd never believe those same drab animations could come from the same studio as this. Visually it is imaginative, style and very impressive - it easily matches the epic feel of the music. So much care has been put into it that it is difficult not to feel impressed by the look of the whole cartoon.

Fudd is a good character and here merges his usual meek personae with the epic operatic warrior to good effect. Bugs is his usual tricky self but he is down played a little bit as the cartoon seems less concerned about hilarity than about a witty, quality product. The two of them are adapted perfectly to the music and the cartoon is great with them.

Overall this is not the funniest of Bugs' shorts but it is easily my favourite. The cartoon is perfectly set to the music and it is intelligent and quite amusing. The look of the film is rich and well designed and fits the music really well - visually it is impressive, but then so is the whole cartoon.


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