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The Tree's Knees (1931)

Bosko the woodsman spurns cutting down trees and plays music instead. The trees and animals dance and make their own music.

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(uncredited), (uncredited)
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Cast

Uncredited cast:
... Bosko / Squirrel (voice) (uncredited)
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Storyline

Bosko is about to cut down a tree when a squirrel pops out of its hole and begs him to spare it. The anthropomorphic tree cowers as little trees gather around to protect it. Everyone is relieved when Bosko pulls a harmonica out of his pocket and plays. Bosko the woodsman will spend his day in the forest playing music instead of cutting down trees. Meanwhile, the trees and animals of the forest dance and make their own music. Written by J. Spurlin

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Release Date:

August 1931 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

[first lines]
Squirrel: Oh, woodsman, spare that tree!
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Soundtracks

Dancing with Tears in My Eyes
Written by Joseph A. Burke
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User Reviews

Bosko again cavorts through the woods in this crude and silly cartoon
10 May 2008 | by See all my reviews

Bosko is about to cut down a tree when a squirrel pops out of its hole and begs him to spare it. The anthropomorphic tree cowers as little trees gather around to protect it. Everyone is relieved when Bosko pulls a harmonica out of his pants and plays. The little trees dance around the big one as if it were a maypole. "Ain't that cute!" gushes Bosko. But one little tree blows him a raspberry. Bosko gives chase, grabs the tree and pulls off its bark. The poor tree shivers with cold. Bosko grudgingly gives the tree back its bark. The tree puts it back on as if it were an overcoat, then ungratefully kicks Bosko in the shin. The tree throws up his behind at Bosko as a gesture of contempt and walks away. "Well, shut my mouf!" exclaims Bosko.

Quickly recovering from his anger, Bosko takes his ax and goes whistling through the forest. He is charmed by a mother bird singing "Rock-a-Bye Baby" to her baby birds as a tree rocks them in their nest. "Ain't that cute!" he gushes again, just as a bird dropping falls on his hat. Disgusted, he flicks it off and then looks up. He sees a bird on a branch above him chewing tobacco. Bosko barely avoids the next "dropping" as the bird spits out its juice again.

Suddenly, a butterfly goes by and Bosko happily tries to catch it. The butterfly leads him to six trees lined up in a row. Bosko plays the trees as if they were harp strings. Another tree, with the long "hair" typical of musicians, pulls out three tiny branches from the side of its face and plays them like violin strings.

And so on. Only a few cartoons after "Ain't Nature Grand!" (1931) -- where he was a fisherman who felt sorry for a fish -- Bosko again spares the thing he had set out to kill and goes cavorting through the woods instead, making music. Again he gushes over nature and again nature returns his enthusiasm with contempt. (You can hardly blame it.) "The Tree's Knees" has a laugh or two, but it's mainly crude and silly.


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