Volume 2 of a celebration of the pioneering solo cartoon work of Ub Iwerks, Walt Disney's foremost animator/collaborator in the formative early years. The first fully animated color cartoon version of "Aladdin and the Wond... more »erful Lamp" (1934)...the legendary Flip the Frog in the slapstick masterpiece "The New Car" (1931)...the original cartoon adaptation of "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," "The Headless Horseman" (1934)...the little-known animation star Willie Whopper in the surrealistic sci-fi classic "Stratos Fear" (1933)...and a famous "lost" film, a full-color cartoonization of "Don Quixote" (1934). These are just a few of the 58 cartoons captured on these two DVDs (available separately) of rediscovered masterworks from the very beginnings of the Golden Age of American Animation.« less
"26 cartoons fill up this volume for 190 minutes worth of cartoon nostalgia. Some of the humor isn't "politically correct", and some of it is a bit ribald, but the cartoons are for the most part entertaining. All but five of the cartoons star the character of "Flip the Frog", a character best taken in small doses (in watching all the cartoons at once, the humor wears a bit thin.) All the Flip cartoons are in black and white, as is one of the Willie Whopper cartoons. The remaining four cartoons are in color, three of which stand alone. The fourth was apparently released at different times under "Famous Fairytales" (as on this disc) and "Willie Whopper" labels.
Here is a list of the disc's contents: 1) Flip the Frog / The Nurse Maid (1932) 2) Flip the Frog / Room Runners (1932) 3) Flip the Frog / The Office Boy (1932) 4) Flip the Frog / The Milkman (1932) 5) Flip the Frog / The New Car (1931) 6) Flip the Frog / Ragtime Romeo (1931) 7) Flip the Frog / What a LIfe (1932) 8) Flip the Frog / The Bully (1932) 9) Flip the Frog / Funny Face (1932) 10) Flip the Frog / Movie Mad (1931) 11) Flip the Frog / The Cuckoo Murder Case (1930) 12) Willie Whopper / Stratos Fear (1933) 13) Comi Color / Jack Frost (1934) 14) Flip the Frog / Chinaman's Chance (1933) 15) Willie Whopper / Hell's Fire (1934) (aka Famous Fairytales / Masquerade Holiday) 16) Flip the Frog / Techno-Cracked (1933) 17) Flip the Frog / Soda Squirt (1933) 18) Comi Color / The Headless Horseman (1934) 19) Flip the Frog / Spooks (19331) 20) Comi Color / Balloonland (1935) 21) Flip the Frog / Laughing Gas (1931) 22) Flip the Frog / Circus (1932) 23) Flip the Frog / Stormy Seas (1932) 24) Flip the Frog / Coo Coo the Magician (1933) 25) Flip the Frog / School Days (1932) 26) Flip the Frog / The Goal Rush (1932)"
christopher r. holland | Glen Carbon, IL United States | 06/15/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you are someone like myself who thinks that the greatest cartoons are from the 30's and 40's, then this dvd is for you. If you love cartoons from this era, then you'll understand what makes this dvd so special---the great animation, jazzy background music, vintage sound effects, voice characterizations, rich black and white, or color. It's all here. The thing that's great about these old cartoons is the fact that there is movement--constantly. I can't even believe some people my age (i'm 32) condemn these cartoons as being 'old' and would prefer the limited animation techniques of the Hanna-Barbera cartoons we grew up with on Saturday morning television. The Flip the Frog cartoons are the biggest surprise and are reminiscent of early Fleischer Betty Boop or Popeye cartoons in their overall tone. The dvd transfer is generally excellent, although there are some cartoons which use older prints as a source. However, they do not detract from enjoying this disc . Since there is a limited audience for this kind of stuff, grab this dvd before it is out of print."
Historical collection, and quite interesting.
coasteray | 11/02/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Many of the other commentators of Volume 1 and Volume 2 have very nicely described the contents of these two collections. I'd like to just say that I found these cartoons to be very essential for anyone interested in the history of animation.
Flip the Frog comes across as another Mickey Mouse, Willie Whopper is somewhat interesting, while the Comicolor series is somewhat similar to Silly Symphonies. I'm not surprised at this since Ub worked at Disney, and is responsible for the early animation of Mickey Mouse and several Silly Symphonies.
I found the liner notes helpful in explaining the social context of these cartoons. Many are poking fun at the Hollywood stars of the day (Disney and Warner also have several of their own similar cartoons), others have relevant commentary about various conditions in our country at the time, and others are just interesting trips into the supernatural. Keep in mind that all these things have been pursued by Disney, Warner Brothers, etc., so there is nothing unusual here. There are plenty of sight gags and the usual exaggerations that early cartoons are especially known for.
Also, I think it would be fair to say that the characters and stories as a whole tend not to progressively develop over the short life of Ub's studio. If you treat all the cartoons simply as individual accomplishments, then it's not a big deal, but as a whole they don't really change much. This isn't necessarily a problem, just an observation.
It's kind of interesting to me that I always felt I was almost watching Disney cartoons, but at the same time there are definitely other edgier influences at work here. The fact that Ub's staff of animators largely came from the Fleischer studio, and included Betty Boop's creator, made the difference. Because of this, innuendo abounds in several of Flip's cartoons, produced from 1930-1933 (pre-Code era). One cartoon, "The Milkman" ends with Flip and the kid singing "Hail, Hail, the gang's all here", and the horse responds by singing "What the hell do we care?". The second time around, as the horse startes to sing the same response, Flip bashes him over the head with a milk bottle to stop him from using the "naughty" word. Holy cow!!! Can you imagine Disney doing this? In "The Office Boy", the sexual innuendos hit a high, especially with the secretary. I was laughing for being taken by surprise. I didn't expect this sort of content. Well, get ready for an interesting time. By the way, unless I'm mistaken, it seemed like Volume 2 was the one for the edgier cartoons. Willie Whopper's cartoons are not too bad, really. They are tall tales told by a kid. Lastly, the Comi-Color cartoons, though fairly delightful, never measure up to the quality of Disney's Silly symphonies. I'd have to say that they are probably the highest quality cartoons Ub produced.
Both DVD cases say that these cartoons are "now viewed for the first time on DVD in unfaded, pristine prints from the orginal negatives". I must protest! Many of these cartoons don't look or sound pristine at all, but are in many cases faded and dirty, with sound to match. It depends on the cartoons. Most of the Flip cartoons aren't so bad, the Willie Whopper ones are the worst of these two collections, and The Comi-Color cartoons all seem to have a softness about them (video and audio). I'd say that perhaps this is the best we can get our hands on, but, really, to say "unfaded, pristine prints" is just flat-out not the case. Overall, most of them are quite watchable, but just keep these observations in mind. I give both collections four stars due to the technical issues."
3 1/2 HOURS OF FUN
christopher r. holland | 01/20/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The perfect companion to Vol. 1, this one contains some different themes -- my favorite being the scary cartoons. Well, they really aren't that scary, but the lightning, shadows, skeletons, etc. really come across well in their black and white.If you've read my review of Vol. 1, then you know what to expect.There are 3-4 cartoons which are a little too risque for younger viewers (they are identified in the included text on the box). Nothing explicit, of course, but probably more like PG material (just those 3 cartoons). I would still recommend buying this one for younger viewers, just skip over those couple of cartoons. Older viewers are OK, too!Buy both volumes, you won't be disappointed!"
Cartoons That Time Forgot - The Ub Iwerks Collection, Vol. 2
GKL | 01/28/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this specifically to get a copy of Balloon Land to show to my grandchildren. I thought that this cartoon had a lesson for all of us. How could balloon people defend themselves against a Pincushion man? The situation seemed hopeless. So how did they do it? They made a sticky dough which they threw at the Pincushion man until he got so stuck together that he just rolled away in a huge ball of dough. All the balloons piched in, some making dough, some manning the machines that threw the dough. They had a warning system that was sounded when the Pincushion man appeared. I found the other cartoons thoroughly entertaining too. It was very refreshing to have plots that involved more than cat-and-mouse type chases."