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Showing 1-10 of 14 reviews(5 star). Show all reviews
on January 20, 2004
What you are getting on this DVD is actually TWO MOVIES FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!
First, you get `The Puppetoon Movie' which was a theatrical release in 1987. It was a labor of love written and directed by Arnold Leibovit and was born out of the highest regard for George Pal's marvelous Puppetoons from the 30's and 40's. It opens however with a somewhat inept Gumby skit wherein Pokey and Arnie the T-Rex proceed to initiate Gumby into the world of George Pal by sitting him down and showing him some Puppetoons. I advise you to skip this chapter and launch right into the second through the tenth chapters which are nine Puppetoons conveniently divided by chapters:
*1. The Little Broadcast (1943) and The Big Broadcast of '38 (1937)
*2. Hoola Boola (1938?) and South Sea Sweethearts (1938) for Horlick's
3. Sleeping Beauty (1935) for Phillips
4. Tulips Shall Grow (1942)
5. Together In The Weather (1946)
6. John Henry and the Inky Poo (1946)
7. Phillips Cavalcade (1934-9?) for Phillips Radio
8. Jasper in a Jam (194?)
9. Tubby the Tuba (1947) The last Puppetoon short made.
*Puppetoons 1 and 2 (unfortunately) each consist of two Puppetoons edited and spliced together! -why? The other ones have their logos and credits removed in an attempt to create a cavalcadesque Puppetoons show, somewhat disappointingly shorn in effect.
All of the Puppetoons were made before television was invented, when the movie theater was the true pinnacle of the dream vision manifest experience, although there were radios in practically every home. George Pal financed several of his Puppetoons by funding from clients who were basically paying to have their products' recognition foisted on an unsuspecting movie-going public. These advertisements were shown before feature films, and they were nonetheless successful because they used a soft sell approach with the product not appearing until late in the film, and even then it was almost a parody of itself.
Phillips Radio Manufactures was one of the first companies to utilize Pal's films for advertising. Radio was the "TV" of the time. Different kinds of music from around the world provided a perfect backdrop for Pal's animation, which works wonderfully when set to music. Horlick's Malted Milk was another one of Pal's many advertising clients. The product was a "tonic" which would make the drinker "energetic" almost like Popeye and his spinach.
'The Bonus Puppetoons' is the second movie and alone is worth the price of the disk! It is probably more of what you may actually be looking for. It is twelve uncut Puppetoons complete with titles and logos. Three of these Puppetoons (4, 6, and 11) are complete versions of ones cropped in 'The Puppetoon Movie' and all twelve are crisper and clearer too. Definitely satisfying.
1. What Ho, She Bumps (1937) for Horlick's
2. Bravo, Mr. Strauss (1943)
3. Olio for Jasper (1946)
4. Phillips Cavalcade (1934-9?) for Phillips Radio
5. Jasper's Derby (1946)
6. Hoola Boola (1938?)
7. Ether Symphony (1936)
8. Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp (1936)
9. The Magic Atlas (1935) for Phillips
10. Jasper and the Haunted House (1942)
11. The Big Broadcast of '38 (1937) for Phillips
12. Ether Ship (1934) for Phillips, (made with beautiful glass models!)
Plus: A very interesting and long interview with Puppetoon Studios animator, Bob Baker!
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on October 20, 2003
I bought this DVD when Amazon sold it for 35 bucks, but this price is a steal! This is a great collection of stop-motion cartoon shorts from the 30's and 40's. The quality of these films are amazing considering how old they are. Plus, the music is swingin'! Buy it. Highly recommended.
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on August 29, 1999
I'm a big fan of stop motion animation, and anything that bears the name George Pal, for that matter. This is a great collection of small puppet films, many of them advertising for "Phillips", it seems. However, I do miss one particular of these rare "Phillips" films. -It involves a laughing man going to a fairground attraction, trying everything; shooting, hitting, rollercoaster, etc, finally ending up in his armchair watching TV. It's a marvellous piece of work, with probably more puppets moving than in any of the others. Perhaps collector of this production Arnold Leibovit can clue me in, why it wasn't included. Stop motion is truly high art, and much more atmospheric than cartoons. It deserves more attention and respect, than I feel it gets. It can be a million times more scary and eerie than any form of hand-drawn animation, in my opinion. -Could this be the reason movies and television prefers the "safer" cartoons ?. We're drowning in cartoons !. The world needs a puppet channel !. Thank God for people like Pal, Zeman, Trnka, Quay, Svankmajer, Park, Starewitz, etc, etc.
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on November 26, 2013
There is a Limited Edition (3,000 copies) Restored Blu-ray of The Puppetoon Movie which includes additional George Pal Puppetoons.
You have to order it direct from B2MP dot net (do a google search, amazon deletes the webpage here)

The Puppetoon Movie Blu-ray

Limited Edition 2-Disc Set

The Puppetoon Movie is a 1987 animated film written, produced, and directed by Arnold Leibovit. Some of the Puppetoons included in the film are Tubby the Tuba, Tulips Shall Grow, John Henry and the Inky Poo, all created by George Pal in the 1930s and 1940s, and framed by a story featuring Gumby, Pokey, and Arnie the Dinosaur.
Not Available at retail. Limited to 3000 copies.

* Bonus Puppetoons (High Definition):
- And To Think I Saw It On Mulberry Street
- 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins
- The Sky Princess
- Rhapsody in Wood
- Date with Duke
- Jasper and the Beanstalk
- Rhythm in the Ranks
* The Great Rupert (High Definition) B/W:
starring Jimmy Durante, Terry Moore, and the Puppetoons
* Previously unreleased interview footage (Standard Definition):
- Ray Harryhausen
- Ray Bradbury
- Gene Roddenberry
- Roy Disney
- Wah Chang
- Duke Goldstone
- Russ Tamblyn
* Bonus Puppetoons (Standard Definition):
- What Ho She Bumps
- Mr. Strauss Takes A Walk
- Olio for Jasper
- Philips Cavalcade
- Jasper's Derby
- Hoola Boola
- Ether Symphony
- Aladdin and the Magic Lamp
- The Magic Atlas
- Jasper and the Haunted House
- The Philips Broadcast of 1938
- The Ship of the Ether
* The Fantasy Film Worlds of George Pal (Standard Definition):
Arnold Leibovit's inspired tribute to George Pal
* Audio commentary by Arnold Leibovit and Jerry Beck
* And more...
Full-color and B/W * 79 Minutes on 2 Discs * 1947 * Not Rated
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on August 19, 2009
I saw these cartoons originally on TV in the 1950's. What a surprise to find many of them packaged with the Puppetoon Movie in this DVD. It brought back wonderful memories. Learning that the stop-action process used hundreds of wood-carved and painted figures to produce these cartoons makes them all the more amazing.

I'd love to see the entire Puppetoon collection made available on DVD.
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on November 18, 2000
Well, Arnold Leibovit has done it again! First he released his wonderful documentary about the life and works of George Pal on DVD, "The Fantasy Film Worlds of George Pal", with almost two extra hours more of interesting facts, films, and fantasy. Now, he's following up this release with his fabulous and heartfelt tribute to Pal's works of Puppetoon short films, with the release of "The Puppetoon Movie" on DVD! Like "Fantasy Film Worlds...", Arnold has added more treats to "The Puppetoon Movie", with a bonus section of new Puppetoons, a photo archive, interviews and movie trailer! Even without these bonus features, "The Puppetoon Movie" is a delight to view, showcasing Pal's most endearing featurettes as a stop-motion animator. Wonderful for children and entertaining for adults, there's even a retro-appeal to those of us who have grown up watching Gumby and Pokey, who, appropriately enough, host this loving look back at Pal's fanciful genius, and attest to their television existence being the outgrowth of Pal's early animation works. As a sort of "Thank You" to George Pal, there's a scene with Gumby and just about any TV stop-motion animated character you can think of, from Speedy Alka-Seltzer to the Pop 'n' Fresh Doe Boy, gathered together in gratitude to Pal for their actuated lives.I tip my hat to you, yet again Arnold, for not only putting these joyful featurettes together for us to re-appreciate the early works of a man with a contagious child-like and pixie-esque grin, and a name that was almost synonymous with fantasy itself, Pal, but you've exceeded yourself by adding much more to this whimsical collection on the DVD release, to make it more thoroghly enjoyable to watch, collect and own for the generations to come.
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on July 28, 2003
I can't believe anyone would be offended by George Pal, a true pioneer in the animation field. A great friend of Walt Disney and Walt Lantz, many of their characters appeared in the backgrounds of scenes of pictures he produced.
I grew up on pictures like, 'Jasper and the Scarecrow', 'The 500 Hats of Barthalamew Cubbins' and 'To Think I Saw it All on Mullberry Street'.
Ray Harryhausen worked for George very early on.
Gene Roddenberry met George Pal before there was a 'Star Trek', of course it was Lucy Ball that gave the "Go Ahead" for 'Trek', but it would have never been if not for George Pal.
Watch all his films and 'Puppetoons', It's well worth it!!!!
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on March 6, 2011
(1) For those who appreciate stop frame animation this IS something to own. However, I wish the DVD company would have restored some of the puppetoon shorts. Different shorts are faded, and have certain flaws.

(2) Many of the shorts are scenes with songs (not stories). However, there are some that do have story lines to them, just don't expect story lines with all of the shorts.

(3) Also, for those who get offended easily there is some stereo-typing of certain groups in certain shorts. However, then in other shorts (with same group) there is nothing offensive about it. It really depends on the short you watch.

(4) There are a lot of shorts which refers to the "Phillips" brand radios. It's a little irritating at times. Advertising at it's finest.

(5) The music gets into your blood. I find myself watching this DVD just to hear specific songs. The one which has stuck in my head goes like this, "tonight I must forget those precious hours, no hearts, no flowers."

(6) Most of them are beautifully done, and are worth watching several times. It is also interesting to watch some of the special features. For example, I didn't know that in Pal's earlier works his puppets were mostly wood! So each puppet was it's own carved piece. That is awesome!
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on August 21, 2003
I have a few Puppetoons on the cheap UK PAL VHS tapes sold from public domain prints and I liked the price so I bought this DVD...
What a revelation, the actual movie by Mr Leibovit is good; the puppetoons are showcased well and he doesn't flinch from showing the commercial origins of some. The additional animation is OK I guess..they like sugar in the USA but....having watched the movie and liked it, I find in the Extras an interesting talk by one of George Pal's animators, AND a wedge of unedited puppetoons so they can be watched title to tail as all films should.
These films are simply exquisite in the detail and effort that went into, say, a cinema advert for Horlicks; this is a disc I shall be returning to almost as much as my Iwerks and B/W Mickey Mouse....they are all perfect works of art in themselves. The subtle humour and emotion expressed in stop motion puppets is out of this world and something that won't be seen again. I have always adored the clean modern style of the late 1930s and the advertising films reflect their time superbly. The golden age of style and superlatives.
(Actually having a 1938 Philips when I was a boy, cost me 1/- (5 new pence) and sold it for a couple of quid doesn't influence me much...oh no)
Buy this. It will repay every cent you spent on it
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on October 7, 2012
When I read the description of this DVD, it said something strange. I had no idea that "haunted houses" were a standard of ethnic humor. Oh wait, I get it... Spooks! Ha ha, that sh** is funny! You know what else is funny? Watermelon! Black kid + Watermelon = Funny! Ha ha ha! Now get over it!!!
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