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Very Entertaining
Michael_Elliott4 April 2009
Chuck Jones: Memories of Childhood (2009)

*** 1/2 (out of 4)

Extremely entertaining documentary short features the legendary Chuck Jones answering various questions about his childhood. Not only does Jones talk about his childhood but he also does animated sequences, which are used to give visuals to his stories. The documentary runs just under thirty-minutes so naturally you're not going to get a lot of great detail on anything but what we do get is pretty interesting. Jones talks about his childhood movie idols like Chaplin, Keaton and Pickford. He also talks about his abusive father and we get explanations on which Looney Tune characters are close to his own personality. The interview was done in 1997, five years before Jones' death but he's eaten up with arthritis, which is apparent just by looking at him. Jones still has a wonderful personality and his charm comes out wonderfully well. The animated drawings in the film are quite simple but oh so beautiful.
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an excellent snapshot of a great animator
didi-513 December 2009
Chuck Jones was one of the legendary animator-directors from the golden age of Looney Tunes cartoons - and this programme presents him, at 84, making some drawings of classic and new characters, and reminiscing about his childhood and those people and moments which had an impact and influence on his later life.

Jones is an engaging subject, obviously physically ailing but still mentally sharp, still a young man in an old man's body - as he puts it himself 'I don't know how old I am but I feel like a young man who has something wrong with him'. The snippets from the Road Runner, Bugs and Daffy cartoons give a hint of the greatness which came from the group of young animators on Termite Terrace.

At half an hour, this portrait doesn't outstay its welcome, and stands as a fine tribute to Jones - well worth watching if you are a fan of the work of the Warners cartoon departments, or if you have a love of the cinema of the period.
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8/10
An utterly charming portrait of the man
mountainkath25 April 2009
Even though I grew up watching the cartoons that Mr. Jones created, I knew nothing about him. This short documentary gave a brief, yet rich summary of Mr. Jones' life.

I absolutely loved how animation was used to illustrate Mr. Jones' words. I also enjoyed seeing him draw some of his most famous characters.

The short stories he told about the key figures in his life (mother, father, uncle) were powerful and it was easy to see how they influenced him throughout his life. I also enjoyed hearing how the name "Acme" came to be used in the Looney Tunes cartoons (I've always wondered about that!).

I often find these kinds of documentaries dry and they nearly always run too long. I wish one had been longer! Mr. Jones was a charming man and he had a way of telling stories that was just enchanting.
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7/10
Entertaining way of telling the Chuck Jones story...
Neil Doyle3 September 2012
With newsreel clips that support some of his commentary (showing flashes of the early era he grew up in), and with lots of sketches by Jones himself as he talks about his roots, his childhood, his parents, relatives and schoolteachers, we see what shaped him to become the great cartoonist who delighted the world with his "Looney Tunes." He mentions also the influence of writers like Mark Twain and Charles Dickens on his life, the early part of which included lots of book reading by gifted writers who stirred his imagination.

Although brief in running time, it's a comprehensive look at his life and career that fans of Chuck Jones will surely enjoy. An added bonus are the clips from some of his wonderful cartoon characters, including Bugs Bunny, and brief scenes from a few of his favorites.
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6/10
Not exactly an autobiography...
MartinHafer17 January 2013
This is a very unusual film. It consists of the famous animator Chuck Jones just talking about his life. However, it's not exactly an autobiography, as he only talks about SOME of his life--particularly his childhood. He also talks about success, how it feels to be old and other somewhat random musings. Along with this, you see lots of clips from some of his classic Looney Tunes cartoons as well as simpler animations he presumably made around the time this was filmed. It's interesting that this film came out in 2009---a few years after Jones' death. If you want a more comprehensive look at Jones, there are several other biographies--such as on "Great Performances" and the film "Chuck Amuck". Far from a must-see but worth seeing--particularly if you adore classic animation.
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