Walt Disney Treasures - Silly Symphonies
DVD | Box Set
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This groundbreaking series of 31 uncensored cartoons, released between 1929 and 1939, includes six Academy Award(R) winners and provides an astonishing look inside the evolution of animation. Each boasting a unique cast of characters, these musical shorts served as Walt Disney's proving ground for emerging technology, new musical styles, and experimental forms. In addition to the cartoons themselves, join Academy Award(R)-winning composer Richard M. Sherman (MARY POPPINS) for an overview of the "Silly Symphony" series, and take a peek inside the Disney archives to view some rare and remarkable merchandise, conceptual art, and theatrical posters. Enjoy a nostalgic look back at the original musical shorts that launched a revolution in the world of animation. Featuring exclusive introductions by film historian Leonard Maltin, this is a timeless collection from generations past for generations to come.
In 1928, when Walt Disney's artists completed "The Skeleton Dance," the distributor of the Mickey Mouse shorts rejected the first "Silly Symphony" with a two-word telegram: "MORE MICE." Disney arranged to screen "Skeleton Dance" at the Carthay Circle Theater in Los Angeles, where it received an enthusiastic response, and the series took off. Seven "Silly Symphonies" won Academy Awards, beginning with "Flowers and Trees." Disney used these musically themed shorts to train young artists and test new styles, effects, and technologies: every film represented an innovation of some sort. In "Three Little Pigs," characters who looked alike demonstrated different personalities through the way they moved. "The Old Mill" showcased the newly invented Multiplane camera. The Sugar Cookie Girl in "Cookie Carnival" was one of several female characters the artists created while learning to animate a believable heroine for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The well-chosen selections in this set demonstrate how quickly Disney advanced the art of animation during the '30s. Only eight years separate the crude black-and-white version of "The Ugly Duckling" (1931) from the moving Technicolor Oscar-winner of 1939. Over 60 years later, these films have lost none of their charm. The jazz-dancing insects in "Woodland Café," the wonderfully animated caricature of Mae West in "Who Killed Cock Robin," and the instrument-characters in "Music Land" remain as delightful as ever. Leonard Maltin makes a genial host, and two hidden cartoons include Walt's introductions from the old Disneyland program. --Charles Solomon
- Only 150,000 sets issued
- Disc One
- Fables and Fairy Tales (9 cartoons)
- Favorite Characters (5 cartoons)
- Leonard's Picks (6 cartoons)
- Disc Two
- Accent on Music (7 cartoons)
- Nature on the Screen (10 cartoons)
- Leonard's Picks (4 cartoons)
- See below for complete list of cartoons
- Supplemental Features
- "The Song of the Silly Symphonies" Leonard Maltin and Composer Richard Sherman
- "Silly Symphonies Souvenirs" Leonard Maltin and Dave Smith of the Disney Archives
- Still Gallery
- Easter Eggs
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I'm a Super Disney Cartoon Fan, however, so I expected a completest package along the lines of the Mickey Mouse sets and the Goofy set. I was looking to get a glimpse at many of the more obscure cartoons in the series that are rarely shown anymore (except maybe early in the morning on the Disney Channel).
Good set, though, that I would highly recommend.
I hope a Volume 2 is forthcoming that will fill in the remaining cartoons.
I bought this for my girlfriend mother, We went to Henry Ford Museum for Halloween, and they had the Dancing Skeletons on a big screen, she talked about how they used to watch that cartoon back in the days, The cartoon is from the 20's but I guess at that time (WW2) there was not a lot of animations, so they were airing reruns from the 20s.
Anyways, I hope she will likes it!
This DVD has more than you may expect and is worth every penny, particularly if you love these old Disney shorts. Thank you, Walt, for your contribution to the entertainment industry.
Obviously I will be sending it back to Amazon for a refund, but I'm not worried. Amazon is always very good about refunds, even when it's the buyer's (my) mistake. And this is amazon's mistake, 100%.
The stories I saw were digitally remastered in brilliant color and are so amazing just knowing that they were made back in the 1920's and 30's...unbelieveable! I am very satisfied and happy that I brought them back into our family.
There are a couple of quibbles to be had, though. Some of the most interesting shorts on these discs can only be found as Easter Eggs, that is, they don't really appear on the menu as chapters, but have to be found pretty much by accident. It's rather annoying at times trying to remember which Easter Egg leads to which film.
Also, despite the blurb on the back of the package, these films are not entirely uncensored. The version of the Three Little Pigs on this disc is an altered version. In the original release, the Big Bad Wolf appears in disguise as an unfortunate Jewish peddler stereotype. For this release, the soundtrack of the sequence has been retained, but the footage of the wolf in disguise has been replaced with newer footage which removes the supposedly anti-semitic material. It isn't especially well-done, either: in fact it sticks out like a sore thumb.
These are minor quibbles. Disney is to be congratulated on releasing a lot of these films, in spite of the possibly rather dangerous content of a few of them. Each day I expect to open the paper and find that the disc has been pulled from distribution because some loony in some backwater has decided that the short Water Babies, a harmless and plotless film which centers upon a group of nude infant boys, [is offensive] and decides to sue.
As far as I am concerned, it is worth the price of the entire set to have a pristine DVD of Who Killed Cock Robin?, which is one of the very best and most audacious films Disney ever released. The caricature of assorted Hollywood personalities is dead on, and I always laugh at Jenny Wren's Mae West-like flirting with the judge.
Get this disk. You won't be disappointed.
Most recent customer reviews
not sure to order again second hand.