Looney Tunes Mouse Chronicles: Chuck Jones Collection
Looney Tunes The Chuck Jones Collection Mouse Chronicles (DVD)
From animation legend Chuck Jones comes the big cheese of mouse collections! Enjoy 19 remastered animated shorts featuring some mischievous mice and their daring adventures! Introducing Sniffles. He's cute, curious and got a heckuva cold! In Naughty But Mice, audiences came to know Sniffles as a sweet, wide-eyed simpleton with a talent for getting himself into trouble. But over the years, Jones had evolved Sniffles into an overly talkative but endearing nuisance. A trouble-loving twosome with a passion for pranks, Chuck Jones let loose the mice, Hubie and Bertie, in the short The Aristo-Cat. A departure from his previous cute and naivé characters, Hubie and Bertie solidified a new direction for Jones. The change paid off with the Oscar®-nominated Mouse Wreckers*, which finds Hubie and Bertie tormenting their favorite nemesis Claude Cat with rapid-fire humor and sight gags galore. So steal a snack and scurry back to your hideout for some laughs and mouse-chief with the latest Chuck Jones Collection! * Mouse Wreckers – Short Subject (Cartoon) 1949]]>
Legendary animator and director Chuck Jones first began animating cartoons for Warner Brothers in the early 1930s. By 1939, Jones had become an integral part of the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoon-creation team with his animated shorts about Sniffles the mouse. The first disc in this two-disc, remastered Chuck Jones collection is devoted completely to Sniffles cartoons. The 1939 "Naughty but Mice" opens the compilation and introduces Sniffles the mouse as a cute little rodent with a very big head cold. Sniffles's trip to the drugstore yields some unexpected side effects from an alcohol-laden cold remedy, including a surprising friendship with an electric razor. This first Sniffles cartoon is a slow-paced short aimed at kids (though modern parents will question the appropriateness of the extended drunken mouse scene), and it's just as enjoyable today as it was in 1939. The pace speeds up, the gags get progressively funnier, and Sniffles becomes a real chatterbox as Jones's work evolves. Sniffles encounters everything from protective owls and their eggs to a silent little bookworm, the noisiest nature walk ever, a little chick who grows up to be a hawk, and, of course, a cat who would like nothing more than to eat that little mouse. Also included on disc one is a commentary on "Naughty but Mice" featuring Jerry Beck. The second disc opens with the 1943 cartoon "The Aristo-Cat," which showcases groundbreaking background art that is bright, abstract, and expressionistic, and stars a new mouse duo, Hubie and Bertie. Hubie and Bertie are two mice who are about as different from one another as two mice can be, but the one thing they do share is a particular tendency for finding trouble. In "The Aristo-Cat," the mouse duo is pitted against a spoiled cat who's scared of everything--including mice! The spoiled cat returns in later Hubie and Bertie cartoons as Claude Cat, whose nervous disposition and hypochondriac tendencies are the source of much comedy. There are just seven Hubie and Bertie animated shorts on the second disc, but there's plenty more to watch with 11 bonus Warner Brothers mouse cartoons, including "Country Mouse," "Little Blabbermouse," and "Merlin the Magic Mouse," as well as two commentary tracks for "The Aristo-Cat" (the first featuring Eddie Fitzgerald, and the second, Greg Ford). Additional commentaries include Ford on "Mouse Wreckers" and Beck on "The Hypo-Chondri-Cat." The "Of Mice and Men" featurette details the evolution of mice in cartoons, beginning with Disney's introduction of Mickey Mouse in 1928, as well as Jones's growth as a director. Finally, there's a storyboard reel for "The Hypo-Chondri-Cat." The picture certainly isn't perfect in these cartoons and the sound is low and at times dull and muffled, but one can't really complain considering the age of the source material. What is spectacular is that this Chuck Jones collection finally offers all the Sniffles cartoons on one DVD and really highlights Jones's development as an animator and director. --Tami Horiuchi
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
While the first disc's cartoons look very impressive, WB continues to overcrop the tops and bottoms of the picture in order to present a wider picture on your widescreen television. As a result, many gags and facial features that occur on the extreme top and bottom of the image are unable to be seen.
Furthermore, on more than half of these cartoons, the original title sequences are missing...being replaced by the re-release openings that are called "Blue Ribbon" titles (since they show a blue ribbon after the WB logo). This is a real shame as the original title sequences include all the production credits and music original to each cartoon.
My biggest beef with this two disc set is that the bonus cartoons presented on disc two are all presented in 480p...low definition. And while it is apparent that no attempt was made to restore any of the bonus cartoons, the fact that they were simply pulled from old masters to help fill out this set is not cool, especially for those of us who really love these cartoons. So basically you are getting one and a half discs of high definition cartoons and eight low definition cartoons.
I hope WB steps it up a little bit as far as quality for the future incarnations of these character specific cartoon sets.
Although I am highly impressed with this release, I will probably still pass on upcoming Blu-Rays unless they offer cartoons that have not been released before. Come on Warner Bros., do a proper series with EVERYTHING and in chronological order like you did with the Laserdiscs so many years ago.