Reviews written by
Akbar (rapt0r_claw)

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22 reviews in total 
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16 out of 18 people found the following review useful:
A very funny Tex Avery-Bob Clampett-type TV show. Bloody surreal., 26 June 2003

This no-holds-barred FUNNY series is- in a way -similar to the classic Warner Brothers shorts of the '30s and '40s. The difference is most of the gags are verbal. This show will do anything for a laugh, and is very literal. It's humorous, and it works. It's all about a certain General Specific, Private Public, Angry (not mad) Scientist and co's attempts to capture Sheep.

The animation is pointy, like most of today's TV cartoons, which is a downside. It has a sort of paperish look, while the old cartoons where utterly real-looking.

The animation is made up for by the literal, obvious jokes. The commercials in between are weird, surreal wacko. Oxymoron jokes never get old, except for the finishing line. News bulletins are also good.

The weirdest part of the show is the last part where we see the Ranting Swede. Today, though, he was replaced by a Ranting Norwegian. The narrator even makes a reference to him in an earlier episode.

What really matters is: It keeps you laughing your damn head off for 25 minutes. Recommended (8/10).

Beep, Beep (1952)
2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
A very funny early Roadrunner short. SPOILERS., 25 June 2003
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This cartoon documents the second encounter between Wile E. Coyote and the Roadrunner, and is definitely better than their first meeting in Fast and Furry-ous (1949).

If measured by aesthetic value, then this cartoon would not rank among the top 5 or 6 of the year 1952. Regardless, this is a very funny short. Coyote (Carnivorous Vulgaris) chases the Roadrunner (Accelerati Incredibilus) along the road and gets completely tired out. The ingenious scientific "Latin" names of the characters are very original, and has been mimicked before in other un-related cartoons. The coyote collapses and puts on a wonderful expression of- I don't know -boredom. Such Jonesesque expressions make this cartoon provide more than its fare share of laughs in seven minutes. Then he has an idea, and another laughable expression is worn. The slapstick jokes are all hilarious, and mask the fact that it is truly evil to inflict such pain on a poor, helpless, GENIUS coyote. Everyone knows, but who cares?

The old rocket gag is present, too. Coyote straps himself to a rocket, which should produce enough oomph for him to catch up with Roadrunner and grab him. Instead, the rocket shoots up into the air and becomes a firework in the distance: Eat at Joe's. This classical gag originates from this cartoon; though obvious, it still makes people laugh.

The highlight truly is the chase through the mineshaft. The two wear helmet-lights, and we see the tunnel through which the two are going, with only the lights visible. Here, the comedy reaches a peak. A must-see sequence, maybe even the best sequence in the early days of Roadrunner. The final touch is provided by the writing of Michael Maltese, as Coyote's light goes out and he unknowingly lights a match in a room full of explosives, the surface is shown where a bunch of cactus jump and spell out the letters "YIPE!" after the blast. Such small things make you laugh all through a mere seven minutes, and as soon as it starts the fun's all over. The rocket skates are another good idea, as is the free drink of water and the anvil on the tight-rope (a sequence that appears in Space Jam [1996]). To give the results of those away would be useless. The free drink proves to be a problem for Wile E. at the end of the second-last sequence: namely the rocket skates.

This classical cartoon is littered with fine animation, except for the characters. Though they are animated very well, the two characters are very primitive; which might be an understatement. Though at first it may seem weird, the humor of the ensuing sequences makes one forget.

If you like vintage Jones, watch this. If you LOVE Roadrunner, get this on video. Excellent entertainment (Rating: 8/10).

2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
An excellent short, though many might not be familiar with the Coyote in this (possible spoiler)., 25 June 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This short is one of the better cartoons featuring the coyote in the early days. It was the first cartoon to reveal the Coyote's name (Wile E. Coyote) that is now so famous.

It basically uses the coyote from Fast and Furry-ous (1949) and changes its prey from a Roadrunner to a rabbit. Mainly features visual jokes.

The opening scene is classic, with a lone door standing between two people. Apparently, the characters think it's a good enough barrier.

Wile E.'s "masterpieces" are fresh and creative, due to the early period of the cartoon. Since the formula was brand-knew, writers and animators were able to find many schemes for the coyote to use. Few later cartoons seem to retain the wit and freshness of this one.

The visual and verbal jokes are pulled off to good effect. The cartoon is able to extract laughs from expressions (courtesy of a certain Chuck Jones) and some nicely executed explosions and the like. Slapstick comedy requires good timing of the gag, which requires a good-humored director, who mainly draws the key pose of a scene; this obviously determines the timing.

The verbal jokes include when Wile E. falls for Bugs's phony female coyote (how'd HE learn to make such a contraption?) and showers her with self-praise upon conceited self-praise.

Some contraptions truly are bizarre, such as the coyote's home-made Acme Lump-Massager, and the strange lid he puts on the rabbit-hole to make rabbit stew. They inspire a good deal of laughs, and the complexity of Wile E.'s attempts is not to be found in future Wile E. cartoons.

There are two faults- well, the following isn't REALLY a fault: The animation. The coyote's animation is, well, strange, to say the least. His voice wouldn't become the future (and better) Wile E. that everyone would become so familiar with at all.

The second fault is hardly a fault, either, just an annoyance if you have the cartoon on video and have seen it several times: the ending. The last line gets stupid after a while; Bugs: And remember, mud spelled backwoids is dumb.

To sum it up: A very good cartoon which I'd give a rating of 8/10. A good effort and better than Fast and Furry-ous, which is kind of like a prequel to it. This one is like Coyote: The Second Adventure.

2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Another humorous addition to a wonderful series (spoiler)., 24 June 2003
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is another classical Pepe Le Pew film and is a worthy addition to the series. Some might say it provides fewer laughs than the rest, because of fewer sequences. An imaginary duel scene takes up a large portion of the running time.

The first scene is great, in which Pepe's stench - what should I say? - has an unpleasant effect on people having a romantic time. The expressions are priceless, which has always been a key factor in Chuck Jones's films, since they are brilliantly comedic.

The highlight of the film is undoubtedly the one in which Pepe (without any help from his rival cat, who is vying along with Pepe for the female cat's affections) creates an imaginary duel with him as narrator. First, he misses his shot at his rival, who then SUPPOSEDLY shoots Pepe, who falls to the ground; Pepe then takes up the role of the female, who lifts thin air and pleads Pepe not to go. To no avail. Pepe lies down, and the cat (who has filled himself up with air and held his breath) changes his color multiple times before exhaling and propelling himself out of the building. When Pepe gets up again and sees the rival gone he begins to walk away, along with making a remark (that I bet was supposed to be humorous) that my ears couldn't quite catch. It went like this, I think: "? is good, but love is better, no?" Then he poses like a pointer at the female, and the chase continues.

Another good part is when the girl cat smells Pepe for the first time and rockets upwards with her tail and back hitting a wet pole, thus painting a stripe down her back. She slides of a roof, and Pepe sees her and tries to catch her like a baseball ("? from Heaven"), and catches her. Watch what he says for yourself, since this'll become a huge spoiler.

Definitely a classic, since it contains some of the most memorable moments of the series, and will lift your spirits when you need a laugh or two. If you own this on Daffy Duck's Fantastic Island (1982 or '83) then the duel scene might be cut. Maybe it's cut only on mine, since it's not original. It could still be cut on the original, like most of Operation: Rabbit (1951) is on Bugs Bunny/Roadrunner Movie (1979).

If you're a fan of Pepe, this is a must-see, one of the highlights of Pepe's career.

Hare Brush (1955)
2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
An entertaining mind-reversal film. [possible spoilers]., 24 June 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

One of the better Friz Freleng films, this short is quality entertainment that takes just a few minutes yet provokes laughs a-plenty.

The idea of Elmer as a rabbit is humorous in itself; and his behavior at the meeting provides a bit of a laugh. Elmer apparently keeps a box of carrots at his desk, and the rest of the businessmen are sinister-looking. That adds a good touch.

There are three main sequences in this short besides the introductory opener; when Elmer attracts Bugs's attention with a carrot (which he says Bugs can have - along with many more) is followed by Bugs opening the window, and Elmer making good his escape. Then Bugs characteristically provides some humorous scenes, mainly verbal. He reads the advice on Elmer's medicine, which says "Take one tea-spoon ever hour with water." Bugs thinks it's nuts, but follows the command anyway ... the wrong way, that is. He picks up the tea-spoon, swallows it whole, and drinks the water! Then he adds spiteful remarks about the medicine.

When the psychiatrist comes, he thinks he's Elmer (for he was wearing a wabbit costume) and Bugs provides more humor. Then there is some misunderstanding between the psychiatrist and the bunny, when the doc tells Bugs to repeat after him, Bugs complicates matters. When the doctor tells Bugs HE's Elmer J. Fudd Bugs switches positions and puts the psychiatrist in his chair. Then he takes medicine and is soon hypnotised into thinking he truly IS Elmer J. Fudd. This is a very funny part of the short, providing probably the best humor in the film.

When Bugs goes hunting wabbits (with an Elmer Fudd-ese accent), he meets the runaway Elmer, and attempts to hunt him down. Classical Bugs/Elmer chase gags ensue, including Bugs meeting a bear. When Bugs plays dead to make the bear leave, the bear buries him, only to find Bugs has gone right through the ledge!

When it seems Bugs has finally caught Elmer, some tax-associated guy appears to tell Bugs he owes $300,000 in taxes and drags him away, Elmer reveals he's not COMPLETELY wacko: "I may be a scwewy wabbit, but I'm not going to Alcatraz."

Recommended. A laugh-fest from start to finish (though definitely not of the same quality as the classics or a normal Chuck Jones short) that is well worth your seven minutes. Freleng couldn't make Elmer work as well as Chuck Jones (who can, anyway? Plus, Elmer is a Jones creation) but this is one of his best efforts with him.

2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Worthy of the Academy Award Nomination., 24 June 2003
9/10

This short was the first (and only) Roadrunner/Coyote short to be nominated for an Oscar. It is certainly one of the best of the series, and was definitely good enough to qualify in a decade when theatrical animation was waning.

This cartoon demonstrates Chuck Jones's astonishing ability to extract laughs from expressions. Add to it the timing of speed gags, and you get a laugh-fest that folds up in just six or seven minutes.

This cartoon (and others in the series) never fails to amuse me, and the effect of cruel irony is wonderful. The '60s had the best Roadrunner shorts, like Fastest with the Mostest (1960), Hop-along Casualty (1960), Zip 'N' Snort (1961), Lickety-Splat! (1961) and this one, as well as To Beep or Not to Beep (1963).

Some of the series' weirdest contraptions are to be seen, such as the arrow, which leads to an excellent running gag.

Recommended for anyone who watches the pitiful efforts of Wile E., as well as to anyone who watches Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies. This Merrie Melody is a fine example of the Roadrunner series, in the Golden Three Years of the series.

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
A good example of the early Roadrunners [some spoilers]., 23 June 2003
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is another good example of the Looney Tunes, nothing special, but quality entertainment nevertheless. It's one of the better films of the early-mid '50s, and better than There They Go-Go-Go (1956).

The opening scene of Wile E. having a shot at cooking is ingenious, and the facial expressions are excellent. The coyote's appearance is similar to what we say on posters and video covers these days, not the '60s Coyote who looked and worked better.

The gags are classical, and the animators were definitely not experiencing some sort of 'animator's block' since the formula was relatively new and allowed for free flow of creativity, and the timing doesn't get too much better. Rarely equalled in future films, and certainly not equalled before it. The scenes with the huge black balls are good, and that's the best example of the comedic timing.

The scene with the elastic is odd, but it was good anyway. A bizarre scene of that type was normal in the early days of Coyote. The fact that the elastic lost its elasticity is strange, and it's no coincidence that the elastic creates a noose when it finally pulls.

The animation is excellent, and the subtle expression along with distorted cartoon action is perfectly in keeping with Jones.

The ultimate summary is: an excellent cartoon [8/10, I would say] but not a masterpiece, just one of the good cartoons at Warner Bros.' peak. Good for a laugh any time. Worth watching.

Good cartoon with Bugs imitating Roadrunner [Lite-medium spoilers.], 23 June 2003
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Not every short by Chuck Jones is a classic, but most are top-notch as is this one, but not a masterpiece. This short is a riot in spots, but really can't dream of matching the staggering comedic technique of films like One Froggy Evening (1955) and the operas. It's your run-of-the-mill good cartoon short.

Some gags are classical, and Bugs's impression of Roadrunner can provoke a couple of laughs. It has the traditional Jones mix of some subtle expressions and bodily positions, along with wild animation. The new essence of speed allows for some exemplary timing of gags by Jones, for which there was no opportunity in the other shorts. Also, the Coyote remains silent, throughout, but Bugs more than makes up for that with his yakking.

The idea of the whole film as Bugs Bunny demonstrating how to handle a Coyote adds a nice touch, and a classical running gag which gets worse and worse for the predator is also to be found; when Bugs takes the target to make an anvil SOMEHOW drop on Coyote, and then dropping it off the cliff again. The Coyote finds the anvil missed its mark, and prepares to leave when he gets run over by a truck. The traditional touch of irony in a Roadrunner film is present.

The reason for the comparison to the Roadrunner shorts is the fact that Bugs acts like one. Except for the fact he's a fast-talking wiseguy who can't shut up. While Roadrunner is unmatched in his ability to inflict unthinkable agony on his antagonist and hunter, Bugs characteristically turns the tables and BECOMES the antagonist, but he causes a lower level of pain for the Coyote. The bird works better from a film's point of view, but Bugs adds some sneakiness, as in the scene where he prepares some glue spread across the road to stop the predator. His touch of meanness also does well.

Anyway, you can't say Bugs is better than Roadrunner. The Bugs/Coyote formula never had enough films to make it big, but at least the Roadrunner produced some classical films, though not the memorable masterpieces. Overall a very good short, but without the touch of the classics. Just plain funny. Recommended.

3 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
Another MM classic, even if it's not Chuck Jones [ALERT! CONTAINS MATERIAL THAT CAN BE CONSIDERED SPOILERS]., 17 June 2003
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Okay, how to sum up one of Bob Clampett's best films? It's typical Clampett, energetic and lively with lots of Clampett-y flair.

There is little verbal humor, but the little there is works to near perfection. The visual humor is active though some long gags start to drag. It's pretty unusual of Clampett to slow down the story-line, but the extra time it takes is worth the end result, such as the undisputed highlight of the film; the moon-curtain gag, in which Daffy aimlessly shoots the moon and finds the moon actually recedes! Daffy's line is as follows: 'Unbelievable, ithn't it?' in Daffy-esque style.

The two-piece ending is marvelous, as the day of the week is revealed and the clock meets a fateful end . . .

The running and repeated leaving-for-work gag ia well done with Clampett-y insanity, and so is the part when they arrive at work.

And that sums it up, I guess. Recommended.

One of the most amazing films I've ever seen. BEWARE. SPOILERS., 8 June 2003
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This cartoon is awesome. It's the best one Pixar's turned out yet, even beating Monsters, Inc. The Toy Stories, Monsters, Inc. and even Shrek have to get out of the way for Finding Nemo.

Okay some scary scenes, but none that anyone of any age would mind. It's perfect for kids of my age group (anywhere between 8-12), as well as my parents and their friends. They all loved it. Even for kids younger than 8, the 'scary' or 'bloody' scenes are okay, since these days they don't really mind that sort of stuff. I'm 11, but I've seen my cousins and I know.

Well, the shark meeting definitely works, since it's funny and gives you a look at the sharks' personalities. In the trailer, I thought Bruce would be mean.

It's got a nice dose of suspense, since my mind always flashed DORY'S DEAD when Marlin escaped and I couldn't see her. The animation, obviously, is top-notch, and Pixar has delivered again.

As for some people talking about weak stories, it's not weak. It's a classic sort of Disneyesque story, and I've never heard anyone say anything bad about a CLASSIC Disney story. It's the family-looking-for-family cliche. But it still works.

When Dory bleeds, and Bruce goes insane, the chase really is reminiscent of Deep Blue Sea. Bruce breaking through ventilation shafts and trying to get through a door. Very like Deep Blue.

Of the fish-tankers, I definitely like Gill. Gill rocks. Nigel the pelican is one of my favourites, and Crush is cool. Chum is my favourite amongst the sharks, because of his species and his character. His remarks about dolphins cracked me up.

When Marlin and Dory get eaten by the whale, I thought Dory was dead when Marlin let go of her, but they would have to get out safely somehow, of course. I mean, come on, it's Disney! And the typical Disney touch when Dory's whale-speaking talent is revealed, and Marlin's complete amazement. Defenitely Pixar is doing the work for Disney now since Disney can't do a thing anymore, but I have a wierd feeling an experienced Disney campaigner is watching over Nemo.

In short, NEMO ROCKS!


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