Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Chuck Jones "Lost and Foundling"

Lost and Foundling (1944) directed by the great Chuck Jones is a vintage comic cartoon. When an egg rolls from the tree and into the home of a kindly mouse the resulting hatchling is assured of a warm home - "the cutest baby chicken you ever saw". Well, maybe. The mouse gives him a great education, excursions on his back, books, more excursions as the little fellow grows, er, into a big fellow, and more books. Too many books: education is bad for this growing chick. When the tiny mouse's back can hardly stand the strain she turns to a book for information about the specific species of this now far from cute bird. Yes, the bird is in the book all right under the hawk category. And his favourite food? You guessed right. Worse, the inquisitive creature unfortunately was peering over the mouse's shoulder and has learnt to read. The pair enter the great nurture over nature debate prompting genuine laughter. Tex Avery and Chuck Jones are giants and their work wears the years well. I cover all sorts of animation in the Animation Blog and trust me, when the mouse tries to deflect the growing enthusiasm for the hawk's lunch, it's as inspired animating as any cartoon has any right to be.

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