This 1939 animated film is based on Jonathan Swift's classic novel about a sailor stranded on an island populated by people the size of his thumb. When Gabby, the town crier, discovers Gulliver on the beach, he runs to tel... more »l the king. But the king is preoccupied with the impending wedding of his daughter, Princess Gloria, to Prince David from the neighboring kingdom. When the kingdoms can't agree on which song to play at the wedding, Gulliver is caught in the middle of a war. His common sense helps the two sides resolve their dispute, but not before a lot of adventure and romance. A milestone in the art of animation, this was the second animated motion picture of its magnitude ever produced, after Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It has been digitally mastered and visually enhanced, making it first-rate family entertainment even today. --Elisabeth Keating« less
"In 1939 when this movie was released, it faced stiff competition at the Academy Awards from 'Gone with the Wind' and 'The Wizard of Oz.' Nominated for an Academy Award in 1939, it didn't win. But those who love this film will always believe that is should have. By 1939, the Fleischer Studios had been crafting the finest animation around -- they actually produced the first full length animated movie (though Disney gets the credit). This is the very best that the Fleischer Studios ever produced. Its characters are every bit as rich and deep as the very best Disney, Bluth or Spielberg-Katzenberg efforts. (Anyone who hears the classic line: "There's a giant on the beach!" -- will never forget it!) For years, I have wanted to get my hands on this and remaster this movie digitally. (I do effects and compositing for a living.) It's wonderful to see that someone who loves this movie has given it the care and respect it deserves. Max Fleischer was a sheer genius, whose work includes the original Betty Boop, Popeye, the animated Superman -- and his own contributions to film include techniques of effects production that are still used today. He was a master of his craft who, sadly, has little recognition outside artists and animators. I have bought many copies of this over the years -- usually in versions so poorly recorded and transfered that they are pitiful indicators of the Fleischer talent -- and yet, everyone I've given it to, loves the movie. My personal gratitude to Winfield Hoskins, Seymour Kneitel and Thomas Reich for your tender care in restoring such a wonderful movie. Thank you. It is truly long overdue and it is a case of giving honor to whom honor is due. This belongs right alongside the best Disney, tucked right on the shelf alongside Bluth's best -- and when the young and the young at heart ask "What is this?" -- play it. My grand daugther plays it regularly and never tires of it and always quites "There's a giant on the beach" -- and she laughs. This movie is simply pure magic -- breathtaking! Many of you will watch it and will suddenly remember seeing this long ago and your eyes will light up, just as many who I have bought it for, have said to me: "I saw this years ago and have never known what it was. I love this!" And they always smile. And I always buy more copies. The soul of a true artist lives in this movie. And this is the best edition of it that you will find. Buy it..."
Winstar outdoes them selves with this greatly restored DVD!
Paul J. Mular | San Carlos, CA USA | 02/20/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"First let me say that I am not a big fan of Winstar products, but they have done the restoration job on this title that they promised. The 60th Anniversary Edition image is so sharp and pure that I got rid of my Republic Laserdisc that came from their studio masters. As typical with Winstar, they created a new stereo soundtrack, but THEY HAVE INCLUDED THE ORIGINAL MONO TRACK! I would suggest selecting the original mono track, their stereo track is distracting.
This Winstar DVD IS the ULTIMATE RESTORATION of GULLIVER'S TRAVELS on DVD!!!"
Classic cartoon gets the royal treatment
Zack Davisson | Seattle, WA, USA | 04/17/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"You may or may not care about the historical or technical aspects of this film (The 2nd full length animation, after Snow White. One of two feature films to come out of the famous Fleisher Studios. The delicate use of the rotoscoping, a process by which animation cells are created by tracing them from filmed footage or photographs. A great extra documentary featuring Max Fleisher, showing how cartoons are made.) If you are a cartoon buff, these things may appeal to you.You will probably enjoy the visual element of this film. (An entirely hand painted cartoon, like a living painting. Sensuous oceans that echo the block print style of the Japanese Ukiyo-E masters. Outstanding use of the masking effect.) If you enjoy animated art, these things should appeal to you.Or you might just want to run around your house screaming "Giant on the Beach!" and have some fun watching a great old cartoon that never really got its due. My 4 year old nephew seems to favor this approach, no matter how much I remind him of the film's aesthetic qualities and historical importance. Go figure. Anyway, this is a great DVD, and well worth the rather small price."
A Neglected Animated Gem
Polkadotty | Mountains of Western North Carolina | 01/15/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Here's a wonderful offering from the Fleischer Studio, creators of Betty Boop and Koko the Clown, and producers of the original Popeye and Superman cartoons. The Fleischer brothers, Max and Dave, also put out the first sound cartoon, an animated sing-along with their trademark bouncing ball that highlighted the lyrics to the audience. They also experimented with some truly effective special affects such as combining live action and animation, and the Three-Dimensional Setback which was a tiny stage with animation cels hung in front to create a convincing illusion of dimension. One of their inventions, the Rotoscope, is still in use today.
The Fleischer Studio was active between 1919 and 1942, after which they folded due to increased competition from Disney. By then features were the norm, and to meet this demand the Fleischers made two, GULLIVER'S TRAVELS (1939) and the rarely seen HOPPITY GOES TO TOWN (1941), originally known as MR. BUG GOES TO TOWN. They were unable to make back the money put into these, so Paramount foreclosed their loan, took over the studio, and fired the Fleischers. Later on the brothers recouped as Famous Studios but never quite regained the sparkle and innovation of their earlier days.
Timing wasn't on their side. GULLIVER'S TRAVELS was made after another great animated film hit the theaters, the one with the seven short guys and a wicked witch and a girl who wanders the forest. SNOW WHITE of course has become a legend of animation; in comparison GULLIVER'S TRAVELS fairly languishes and too bad. Here's a noteworthy production that deserves its due.
There's a noticeable distinction between the animation styles of Disney and Fleischer. The Fleischer style appears more arty, with stylized figures and backgrounds and lighting affects which I can only describe as "Max Parrishesque." Gorgeous clouds and seas, and a rather glowing affect infused throughout. The night scenes with Gabby and his lantern are especially effective, and the shadowing is superb. Compared to SNOW WHITE, GULLIVER'S TRAVELS moves at a rather leisurely pace and the story is more expansive. There's plenty to grow on you, too. From the catchy tunes and the cute characters, to a towering, striking Gulliver with the brooding, thoughtful soul of a poet combined with the spunk and spirit of a true adventurer."
This is definitely the version to get.
H. Mahmood | 04/30/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've read that other versions of this dvd have omitted scenes for some weird reason. One scene in particular that was left out of the other version was the "All's well" song sung by gabby.
This version has it all, the picture quality is absolutely stunning. I own a VHS copy of this movie and i can't believe how beautiful this version looks. I'm seeing things on film i've never seen before. Another great feature of this dvd is the sound format. They offer several different sound formats, you can watch the movie with enhanced sound features, or just watch it with the original soundtrack, there are others i just can't remember.
Yes it has no subtitles, but i think you can live without subtitles. I'd rather have a complete movie without subtitles, than a movie that's been shortened with subtitles.
They also have some cool bonus features such as two Gabby episodes, showing you the cleaning up process of old fleischer films, and also how the old school fleischer films were made.
All in all for roughly 10 bucks, you're getting a great deal."