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The cartoon starts with a cartoonist working on a strip. When he gets tired, he leaves a window open. The wind spills the papers on the floor, and spills the inkwell, forming a rosharch figure. Then, through the magic of animated cinema, the characters come to life moving to the title song, which is quite catchy. The fun ends when a cleaning lady walks in and cleans up the mess that cartoonist made. Unfortunately, this cartoon is racist in its drawing, but the music is great. It is available on bootleg tape compilations, and it really is one of the milder racist cartoons.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Most of the Golden Age studios did shorts which coupled live action
footage with animation and this is one from the Lantz studio. There
will be spoilers ahead:
The short opens on an animator hard at work in the studio late at night. He stretches, yawns and leaves. Wind blows in through an open window, scattering paper all over the place and knocking over an inkwell. Out of the spilled ink arise several black characters, while several more come out of ink pooled around the inkwell itself. They look like stereotypical black natives.
The bulk of the short is spent singing the song, "Voodoo In Harlem" while the characters move around against physical objects in the studio. They play musical instruments, dance and sing until dawn and then go back into ink or a bottle. The close of the short shows a maid coming in to clean up the mess and wondering what the ink stain was.
Visually a very interesting short, but one which would understandably offend some today (and probably did even when it was made). But then Little Red Riding Hood probably offended someone. Worth watching if you can find it. Recommended.
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