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It's off to Disneyland's Frontierland in 1962 and Sheriff Walt Disney
has invited us to his private table to see an 'augmented' performance
of THE GOLDEN HORSESHOE REVUE.
Made to celebrate the Revue's 10,000th performance, this piece of video is valuable to Disney enthusiasts in that it preserves in color a look at the production and its stars in their prime. Since its inception, the Revue proved extremely popular with Disneyland guests, and was always a personal favorite of Walt; the stage-left box was kept reserved for his impromptu visits.
The Revue's two longtime stars are shown to advantage in the film. Lovely songstress Betty Taylor acts as hostess in the character of Slue Foot Sue and sings some lively period tunes between the acts. The main attraction is slapstick comic Wally Boag. He first enters the theater in the guise of a pesky salesman brandishing merchandise from his carpetbag; soon he switches to the persona of Pecos Bill and sets the show up for its rootin' tootin' finale. Although wonderfully funny, Boag did very little film work, making this the best representation of his comedic talents on record.
As this was a special edition of the Revue, three guests were brought in to really liven things up even further. Clown Gene Sheldon - best remembered as the mute servant Bernardo in the TV series 'Zorro' - performs some silent pantomime. Pretty Annette Funicello sings & dances, first in the costume of an Indian maid and later as a dance hall girl. Living legend Ed Wynn reminisces about the old days of Vaudeville and performs a little of his gentle comedy. In the program's most poignant moment Ed pedals his mobile upright piano about the stage, Miss Taylor perched on top singing "Tea For Two."
Wally Boag retired from the Revue in 1982 after performing an astonishing 40,000 times on the Golden Horseshoe stage. Walt Disney recognized Boag's talents as going far beyond that of comedian and he invited him to work with the famed Imagineers, that cadre of craftsmen & thinkers who created Disneyland's attractions. As a result, Boag helped develop both the spooky Haunted Mansion & the tropical Enchanted Tiki Room, which included getting to write much of the script and recording some of Tiki Room's bird dialogue.
A trip to Disneyland's Frontierland, where Walt Disney himself (in cowboy attire and saying things like 'pardner') introduces the anniversary floor-show at the Golden Horseshoe Saloon. Betty Taylor is the energetic mistress of ceremonies, there are rowdy cowboys and comedians, plus Annette Funicello in an extended cameo singing the pretty "Lantern Song", the jumpy "Mr. Piano Man", and the hilariously dumb "Buffalo Round-Up" (which really has the on-screen audience in stitches). Ed Wynn, sitting in the box seats, gets pulled up on-stage (he's in on the joke). The camera-work is of the point-and-shoot variety, but the show is still quite pleasant if overloaded with corny vaudeville shtick. Released theatrically (!), this would make a fun double-bill with "Disneyland After Dark" for the Walt Disney completist.
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