Finding their audience drying up in favour of rock music, two young mouse folk singers find themselves with a bleak future. Desperate for a better career and life, the female vows that she would do anything to become a rock star. Instantly, the Devil arises to take advantage of that and offers to make her a star in exchange for her soul. She agrees and she quickly becomes the star she's dreamed of while her boyfriend, Daniel Mouse, is left behind. On the night of her greatest triumph, the devil comes to collect on her soul. In desperation, she turns to Daniel who must attempt the impossible task of trying to find an escape loophole for his girl's release. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm <email@example.com>
In exchange for fame as a rock star, Jan Mouse unknowingly signs a contract for her soul with Bealzabub.
Yes, the story's been done to death (another commenter mentioned the very similar "Phantom of the Paradise"), but this has to be one of the most charming versions. Rooted in the '70s, the animation is truly dazzling at times, the music (by The Lovin' Spoonful's John Sebastian) is diverse and infectious and the film itself is entertaining enough for both children and adults. Not too many '70s made-for-TV specials can boast all of that.
While Mrs. Daniel Mouse is the star, it's the Devil who steals the show, constantly morphing and contorting with ease as he subtly growls his dialog. One of the greatest villains to grace any screen, it's almost a shame that Beal didn't appear in a theatrical film where he had exposure to a wider audience.
It seems that "Daniel Mouse" is under-appreciated by fans of the much darker "Rock & Rule," the film that it inspired, but it appears on the 2-disc DVD set of "R&R" (where I first discovered it). Just a warning: the DVD version has been slightly trimmed, but it can be found in it's entirety for viewing online. While this is certainly more sugary and family-oriented than the later film, it's WAY above average fare for TV from that era... I'd certainly liken it to a good Disney production.
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