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I've seen and loved all of the great Rankin/Bass Christmas shows, and I
most of them on video, but this first one, "Rudolph," is still the best,
still the one that holds the warmest memories for me.
In terms of Holiday atmosphere, it can't be beat. The late Johnny Marks' songs are all winners, and "Rudolph" and "Have a Holly Jolly Christmas" are now firmly established Christmas classics. And holding it all together is Burl Ives' warm, friendly singing and narration. His sincerity and joviality just naturally make you want to "pull up an ice block and lend an ear." I'm now 41 years old, I know all the dialogue practically by heart, and yet I still watch "Rudolph" practically every Christmas. And, what's more, I still love it.
Finally, a word to Julie Landry, of Orlando, on her review. I myself was dyslexic as a child. And yes, I got picked on because of it. But, in deference to your opinion, I see "Rudolph" as a story of how even a perceived outsider can fit in. As a successful Senior Librarian today, I'm living proof that outsiders can succeed. But, then, Rudolph proved that long before I did.
There are many Christmas specials and movies involving Christmas. Some are good. Some are average. And some are just plain bad. But Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer shall remain the king of all Christmas specials. All the characters are wonderful and memorable, and Burl Ives is just perfect for the snowman, who sings those unforgettable songs. A must see every Christmas.
Directors: Kizo Nagashima, Larry Roemer; Story: Robert May; Script:
Romeo Muller; Producers: Jules Bass, Arthur Rankin
Rudolph is more then a Christmas special, it is a holiday tradition. I always look forward to the special time during the Christmas season when I can watch this. This beloved special is one of the few things that brings back my childhood. Most children today enjoy watching this as much as their parents did when they were little. On the DVD's introduction, producer Arthur Rankin states that Rudolph the Red Nosed Raindeer has been reportedly viewed by over a billion people worldwide. It is perhaps second only to The Wizzard of Oz as being the most viewed programme of all time.
Rudolph is the first of a line of Christmas specials that were produced by Rankin and Bass and written by Romeo Muller. Some of the others are: The Little Drummer Boy (1968), Frosty the Snowman (1969),and Santa Claus is Coming to Town (1970) as well as Here Comes Peter Cottontail (1971) and Puff, The Magic Dragon (1978). It is hard to imagine all these classic specials being the creation of one man. Mr. Muller is Mr. Christmas!
The origins of Rudolph the Red Nosed Raindeer stem from the song written by Johnny Marks back in the 1930's or 1940's. A Max Fleischer cartoon short was made in 1948 with Robert May creating its story. However, the Rankin and Bass Christmas special is based on the Johnny Marks song but other than that, it is all the creation of Romeo Muller. Hermey the elf, Sam the snowman, Yukon Cornelius, Claurice, the head elf are all Muller's creations. Even Rudolph's personality is created by Muller. In the 1948 cartoon Rudolph does not talk.
I have always liked Burl Ives as both a singer and an actor. His part as Sam the Snowman is my favourite by him. All the people behind the scenes doing the voices were all talented. They used stop motion animation with moving puppets just like they did with King Kong. Rudolph is a timeless classic that bring me back to the simpler time of childhood every time I watch it. I hope my small children will enjoy it to.
Must-see Christmas children's TV. Come Thanksgiving week, I find myself
checking TV Guide to make sure I don't miss it.
The little cottage in the Land of Misfit Toys continues to be my vision of 'coziness'...
Christmas would not be the same without this wonderful story, 'Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer'. This film, narrated by talking snowman voiced by Burl Ives, is a claymation which tells Rudolph's story. It's a children's film, but it is one that adults can enjoy too because it is a cute film, and it offers nastalgic value. It also has a few classic Christmas songs; combine that with a good story and the warmth and happy ending, and you have the perfect Christmas family film. This film was one of my favourites as a child, and I still love it today. Excellent; I wish they made them more like this. I cannot fault this film in any way.
perhaps the best of the early rainker/ bass productions, Rudolph and the tale of the island of misfit toys is classic, nearly flawless with great original songs. there is little better to get into the holiday spirit. the animation is a little bizarre and perhaps even a little frightening for young kids, which may explain why they don't show it as much. or maybe it's because it lacks flash and pizazz and all that showy junk that passes for entertainment on tv nowadays. Give me this stuff anyday. the only problem i have is the fact that they make santa and all the other reindeer out to be such b*****ds. If I were Rudolph, I wouldn't let santa use me as his tool, I'd tell him to cram it. Of course that's just my opinion.
Oh this one is great! I loved it as a kid, and must admit to being scared of
the Abominable when he showed round age 5 or so. The parts with Herbie doing
the 'Oink oink oink' routine and with Yukon Cornelious are a Scream! (One of
my cousins reminds me of Yukon, actually...)
There are some terrific vignettes here-the iceberg drifting off into the northern lights, the Beasts' roaring echoing all round, the Island of Misfit Toys(Charlie in the Box is the best!)...'Bumbles Bounce!'...
Who can not like this? Plus Burl Ives, the one and only. This one will still be shown long after the Beavises of the world are gone.
*** outta ****, a definate watch. +
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Great story that truly brings back childhood memories. Growing up in
the 70s, this show was a staple of the Christmas season and always
showed up on television, along with a few others and some classic
Christmas commercials (before Christmas became a dirty and
Yes, like other posters have commented, the animation/claymation/whatever it's called is dated. There are no fancy computer generated special effects, and some comments made would be frowned upon in "today's society." But perhaps that is one of the things about this show that makes it so appealing. I appreciate that this was top technology for the times (and I like that it doesn't have all the "scary" animations that some of today's shows have). Also, I can appreciate that any "sexist" remarks made (such as the men "protecting the women folk" - there was actual chivalry back then!) were made in a time when this was acceptable to the censors, but cursing and on-screen violence/sex/etc. wasn't. So does that make our times better or worse than those just 20ish years ago? I also want to set the record straight... Santa does apologize to Rudolph before he needs him to guide his sleigh. It is a brief apology right after Rudolph returns. Santa says something like "I was a little to rough on you. I guess we all were." Some people have commented that by today's standards, they find this "too lame" of an apology. Again, I say that times have changed, and not necessarily for the better. People today are less willing to forgive and, instead, seek revenge. Imagine if Rudolph would have said "stuff it, Santa." Kids throughout the world would have suffered because of his anger and resentment. Instead, he took a higher road and became a hero. Even the final words of the song tells of him going down in history.
Finally, my son and daughter love it. They are both very young, and the things that would be criticized by the P.C. police out there go straight over there heads (and I don't believe in the whole brainwashing conspiracy theory). It's a simple story that isn't so frightening that it makes them run from the room in tears. It also ends on a cheerful note and they love the music.
As a kid and even as a teenager, I loved to see it on T.V. after Thanksgiving. It was one of the seasonal shows that meant Christmas was coming. Now, since all T.V. seems to show are reality shows or night time soap operas that are not family appropriate, I will continue to play the DVD for my kids anytime they would like to see it between Thanksgiving and Christmas... and I will delightfully watch it with them.
This version of Rudolph has transcended the simple childhood fantasy originally intended, becoming a visible part of our popular holiday culture. The sound track, which included new tunes for my generation are now woven into the fabric of traditional holiday fare. For me, this film sparks memories. I was on a cub scout trip to gather greens for wreaths and the biggest worry of many of the cubs was if we were going to get home in time to see the premier showing of Rudolph. I was 8 years old and my Mom had bought me a new boy scout hatchet for that outing... Of course she worried I'd cut my fingers and Dad reassured her that I'd be careful with the hatchet. In later years, I suspect there were a few other teens who secretly watched Rudolph (without their peer's knowledge) and in even later years it was great to have some young ones around to lend an excuse to watch the Christmas special. Rudolph has changed over the years. Originally, the commercial breaks during Rudolph's airing included some of Santa's elves from the show. As I recall, they were sledding snowy hills on an electric razor and when it stops short, the tall elf with glasses was thrown and disappeared into a snow drift. The commercials were almost an extension of the show and enjoyable to watch. There was also the change of songs and attitude in the scene where Hermie and Rudolph first meet. In the original I believe they sung the misfit song, which seemed to be an acceptance of their status and they depart in search of independence and a place they can fit in. In early subsequent versions, the fame and fortune song replaced the misfit song which seemed to create a more defiant attitude towards their lot in life. Perhaps that defiance fit into the 1960's best. In any event, the misfit song was back on the most recent showing and Hermie and Rudolph lamented their status once again. I'm not complaining about the changes I've done a little changing myself in the last 40 years. So I split some kindling (believe it or not) with that same old boy scout hatchet Mom bought me so many years ago and I smiled at her ancient worries... all ten digits remain happily in place. The fireplace was casting a nice glow and my granddaughter and I watched Rudolph. My granddaughter is not quite two and she toddled to the television screen and touched the image of thin Santa who won't eat for Mrs. Klaus and then she turned to me and smiled. One more memory for life like I said, this film has transcended what it was meant to be.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
After reading some of the reviews, I think most of the people who see this wonderful Christmas classic in a negative light, are not grasping the true meaning of the story. Many of them mention that it makes Santa and the other characters who work at the north pole seem cruel and mean because of how they treat Rudolph until they need him. That is not what happens in the movie because 1. Rudolph's dad is sorry for how he treated him when Rudolph goes missing, and 2. Santa tells Rudolph, he is sorry when he and his friends get back from their adventure, not when he suddenly he needs Rudolph after learning about the storm. The meaning of the story is the importance of accepting who you are and working through life's adversities instead of trying to fit in to accepted norms. It also shows that even though those we hold in highest esteem can sometimes be wrong, it is just as important to be able to forgive them as it is to do so for those we see as our equals. Other complaints focus on the misfit toys saying they are mistreated by being dumped out of Santa's sleigh and by being brought to a snowy island in the first place. Maybe they are being dropped, with the help of umbrellas I might add, to homeless children somewhere in the world where there are no homes with chimneys. Children who will love them no matter what their shortcomings are, unlike spoiled well off kids. And the bird suddenly being able to fly, well it is the season for miracles and Santa is suppose to be magical. Finally people point to the dolly not having any obvious problems. My answer to them is that there are plenty of perfectly normal or even beautiful beings out there who have to go through life being unloved because of their beliefs or actions. King Moonracer doesn't go out each night looking for toys that are odd or ugly, he looks for toys who are unloved and feel unwanted. He rescues them and gives them a home, the only home he has to offer and it may not be the best but it shows that at least he cares.
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