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Birds of a Father (1961)

Sylvester Cat discovers that his son, Junior, has a new best friend - a bird named Spike. Aghast, Sylvester decides to teach his son the facts of feline life and goes with him on a bird ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Sylvester / Sylvester Jr. (voice)
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Storyline

Sylvester Cat discovers that his son, Junior, has a new best friend - a bird named Spike. Aghast, Sylvester decides to teach his son the facts of feline life and goes with him on a bird hunt, which, as usual, isn't Sylvester's forte. He is hit with a badminton racket after he mistakenly shoots a badminton birdie and then is blown up when he sends a model plane after Spike and is himself shot at by the out-of-control plane and forced to take refuge in an explosives store shed, with the plane slipping in behind him and firing at the TNT. Written by Kevin McCorry <mmccorry@nb.sympatico.ca>

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1 April 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Få hellere en bøf, far  »

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(Technicolor)

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1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Sylvester Jr.: Oh, how can I face my friends? My father shooting at helpless old ladies.
Sylvester: Oh, look, son, she's about as helpless as a porcupine in a nudist colony. Sakes!
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Soundtracks

Listen to the Mockingbird
(uncredited)
Music by Richard Milburn
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
The cats and the bird
3 February 2018 | by See all my reviews

Love animation, it was a big part of my life as a child, particularly Disney, Looney Tunes and Tom and Jerry, and still love it whether it's film, television or cartoons.

'Birds of a Father' is not one of Robert McKimson's best overall and there are better Sylvester and Junior characters. To me though, it is one of his better later efforts. His late period saw a fair share of pretty weak cartoons (though nowhere near as bad-faring as the worst of Alex Lovy and Rudy Larriva), in what was in all fairness a patchy decade, particularly the latter part, generally for Looney Tunes, so seeing a cartoon that fared very well was nice to see.

Do agree that the bird character Spike is not as interesting as Sylvester and Junior and the ending could have had more clarity.

There is a lot to enjoy though. The plot is fairly standard but has tremendous energy and enough freshness and amusement to keep one interested and stop things from being too predictable.

Gags are great fun and often hilarious, while the dialogue has a good amount of sharpness and wit. Have always liked Sylvester and Junior together, they are a funny pair and there is also heart to their relationship. That can be seen in 'Birds of a Father' even if it has been stronger in their earlier cartoons.

Junior is amusing and avoids being too cutesy. The most interesting and funniest character is Sylvester, he takes the laughs to very funny effect and is suitably cunning but one roots for him too.

Animation for a 1960s Looney Tunes cartoons, where budgets were generally lower and deadlines were tighter, is surprisingly very good. Fluid in movement, vibrant in colour and very meticulous in detail, Sylvester's expressions are especially well done. Am more of a Carl Stalling person myself, but Milt Franklyn's music is full of energy and lush and clever orchestration, while not quite enhancing the action that Stalling did so consistently brilliantly Franklyn's music always added a lot.

Mel Blanc very rarely put a foot wrong, he was an unequalled master at giving individuality to more than one (often multiple) character, always sounded like he was having fun and never phoned it in when his material was weak. As ever he is outstanding and clearly was enjoying himself a lot, helped by that his dialogue allowed him to do so.

Overall, very good late effort for McKimson and Looney Tunes in general. 8/10 Bethany Cox


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