With the help of a smooth talking tomcat, a family of Parisian felines set to inherit a fortune from their owner try to make it back home after a jealous butler kidnaps them and leaves them in the country.
In Victorian London, England, a little mouse girl's toymaker father is abducted by a peglegged bat. She enlists the aid of Basil of Baker Street, the rodent world's answer to Sherlock Holmes. The case expands as Basil uncovers the crime's link to a plot against the Crown itself. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm <email@example.com>
Forgotten Classic with Some of the Best Animation in History
Having revisited this film on the anniversary of its first release I was shocked at how good it is. I was also left to wonder why Disney never did anything with it since its release since its a very good film.
The plot is simple, Basil of Baker Street helps a young girl find her kidnapped father who is the clutches of the evil Ratigan. There's more to it than that but thats a place to start.
Vincent Price, probably having the time of his life, is the foul villain and he seems to be having a complete ball. What ever joy he was feeling must have been infectious since the work the animators did carried over and its fun to watch Price's animated alter ego mug for the camera.
This is the last of the un-politically correct films from The Mouse House. Characters smoke, which as we all know is now a no no since Disney is now going back and digitally erasing all trace of that "bad habit" from all of their earlier films. Characters die. Yes the villain still dies these days, and perhaps a Mom to get the plot going, but here we have several characters die, one simply for insulting the villain.
The final sequence of this film, a battle in and on Big Ben was promoted as Disney's first major use of computer animation. The sequence is spectacular and one of the greatest animated pieces I've ever witnessed even today. The whole thing lasts maybe five minutes but it pushes the art of animation as far as Disney has ever gone and shows us what a loss the politically correct, story formula has been in the realm of artistic animation. Disney learned how to make money but not films that pushed the envelope of what was possible. What might have happened if they had expanded on this one sequence?
See this movie. I give it 8 out of 10. Its not perfect but it is funny and exciting in ways that the films that followed rarely were. The film also contains several moments that prove that Pixar are not the only ones who can make movies that reflect the Warner Brothers style.
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