It has been awhile since I put an article out. So, here is this one I wrote. Sometime last year I wrote an article on the movie, "Melody Time," and now I have recently seen the previous Disney movie that came before it, "Make Mine Music." So why not write about that. "Make Mine Music" is similar to "Melody Time" in which the movie is comprised of several shorts in which music is the main theme in these stories. As a kid both of these movies passed me by, but that's okay these movies aren't that great anyhow, but I still wanted to write about them, because they are part of the early years of Disney. Disney has been a big part of my childhood and I have seen every theatrical "2D" traditional animated movie from the Walt Disney company.
I will break this article into the shorts this movie is comprised of, just like my article on "Melody Time." Unfortunately the North American DVD version of the film is an edited version of the movie with "The Martins and Coys" segment cut from the film for being to violent so I can't review that part. I tried to find in on YouTube, but I just got one in Spanish and I don't speak Spanish. So on DVD it doesn't have it.
Blue Bayou sung by the Ken Darby Chorus
This is a easily listening piece with, cranes flying around a Blue Bayou. I find it boring and dull. Not much else to say about this piece.
All the Cats Join In by Benny Goodman and his Orchestra
Okay all the best articles have childhood stories in them. Here is mine. Little did I know I had seen a variation of this short in my childhood years before I knew it was part of this movie thanks to a televised Disney special known as "DTV Romancin'" that was taped using an VCR.
So what was "DTV Romancin'?" I'll tell you. DTV was music videos using Pop music and various animated scenes from Disney. These DTV music videos were used as filler material in the early days of The Disney Channel, before there was commercials on the channel. This was at the time where Music actually was a big part of MTV. So DTV was inspired by that. "DTV Romancin'" also known as "DTV Valentine," was a special that aired on NBC which included a edited version of "All the Cats Join In," only the DTV version took out the original music from the movie and used the song "Rock This Town," by the Stray Cats.
So as a kid I would watch this special on video tape and the "Rock This Town" was one of my favorite videos from that special. It was funny and the music is good. However when I grew up and finally seen "Make Mine Music" you can imagine my surprise when I seen "All the Cats Join In." I was like, "Hey I seen this as a child only this is the real thing with the original music, cool." Well after that segment was over I thought you know even though that this was the uncut original I like the edited "Rock This Town" version better. I just think the music works better. However maybe if I grew up in the 40's I would might have liked the original "Make Mine Music" version better because Jazz was popular at the time. However I will show both versions here and you can decide. The "DTV" version is poor quality, but that was all I could get from You Tube.
All the Cats Join In from Make Mine Music
(Broken YouTube Link Removed)
Rock This Town from DTV
Without You sung by Andy Russell
This is a Ballad about lost love. The only thing I like about this one is Andy Russell sings this song well. However this song is just a downer.
Casey at the Bat read by Jerry Colonna
I also happened to see this segment as an animated short before I ever knew about the movie. This was also recorded from television using a VCR. I loved it then and I love it now. The short of course isn't told line from line from the poem. There was some added versus that go into more detail about how the previous batters got out and the two behind Casey got on base. There is also songs added to this about how great Casey is, which makes a bigger impact at the end of poem. Now then if you haven't seen this short or read the poem for whatever reason I won't spoil the ending. I like short because it is an amusing retelling of a great American poem that still make me laugh when I see it.
Two Silhouettes a ballet danced by David Lichine and Tania Riabouchinskaya and sung by Dinah Shore
So in this one two live-action silhouettes dance a ballet with simple background animation while Dinah Shore sings the song. Okay I don't like ballet. I apologize to those who do, but ballet has not been my cup of tea. This is another piece I find boring like "Blue Bayou" and "Without You." Oh well, that is the way I feel. However I do have to respect the creativity of putting live action Silhouettes with background animation. That must have been very innovative at the time. Now it seems kind of dull.
Peter and the Wolf composed by Sergei Prokofiev and narrated by Sterling Holloway
"Peter and the Wolf" is a classic Russian tale told with music. In this piece of music each character is represented by a different instrument. I had first heard Peter and the Wolf in grade school music class when we learning to hear the different instruments in a piece of music. In the Disney version It is cut down some for this movie, but it is very entertaining. Sterling Holloway is also quite humorous narrating the story. For those of you who don't know Sterling Holloway, he had played many voices of Disney characters. The first of which was the Stork in "Dumbo." He is most recognized as the original voice of that silly old bear Winnie the Pooh. Because Holloway has such a distinctive voice I was able to recognize his voice as a kid in many different Disney movies.
After You've Gone played by Benny Goodman and his quartet
Another piece of jazz music from Benny Goodman. This piece shows musical instruments that dance around a musical backdrop. I think it is beautifully animated and the jazz music is good. I wonder why they had put in two jazz performances in this movie when one would have been enough, especially since they both were done by Benny Goodman. If I were to keep one of the two Jazz pieces it would be "All the Cats Join In." I like that one better, but maybe that's just me.
Johnny Fedora and Alice Blue Bonnet sung by The Andrews Sisters
Two personified hats fall in love in a department store. The Blue Bonnet gets sold first and Johnny Fedora is left alone until he gets sold. Later fate allows the two hats to find each other again. It is definitely one of the better segments.
The Whale That Wanted to Sing at the Met an opera like piece in which all the voices are done by Nelson Eddy.
In this final part there is a whale that can sing opera in three different voices. A big time opera producer Teti-Tati believes the whale can't actually sing and that the whale actually swallowed three opera singers and so Teti-Tati goes out to the ocean to hunt the whale in attempt to rescue the supposed singers. This final segment is both funny and tragic. Nelson Eddy does a fantastic job providing all the voices. This segment is a fun way to get opera in the movie with out younger audiences getting too bored with it. I won't give away the ending for those who hasn't seen it, but I will say this short is the perfect way to end this movie.
Overall This movie has it's ups and downs and I do like more than Melody Time. However It is still only slightly good. It worth checking out at least once for the good parts even there may be some bad parts you may not like.