Sunday, February 10, 2008

Canned Feud 1951 ( Dir : Friz Freleng)

Like all Friz Freleng's cartoons, Canned Fued follows a very simple plotline, that's followed by many gags and then an ending where you sort of raise your eyebrows a bit. Although I'm not a big fan of his cartoons I do admit that he has comic timing and his stories unfold very nicely.

Canned Feud reminds me of Tex Avery's MGM cartoons and I have a feeling they were an influence on this short. They way the gags are centred on one motive is very Avery-ish.

Basically Sylvester's owners go for a holiday in California and forget to leave Sylvester any food after some frantic searching Sylvester discovers a whole cupboard filled with canned fish ( in these few minutes there's a lot of Avery-like double takes). The only problem is that a mouse has stolen the can opener, which means Sylvester has to catch the mouse in order to get the tool.

After electrocuting himself, being squashed by a piano, Falling through the floor ( this utilises Freleng's famous saw gag. The saw gag : when a character saws through a wall and his nemesis saws through the floor, thus giving the immpression that the blade is extra long. Usually the character will fall through the floor) backfires, getting his head blown up and sucked in a vaccuum cleaner. Sylvester decides to use a shed load of dynamite and blows up the house in the process. Finally the can opener lands on him. Estactic he runs to the cupboard only to find it locked and, yes, the mouse has the key. Sylvester screams and then faints.

Canned Fued is a very well structred cartoon and one can see why it was a staple on video compilations and tv shows. It has a classic cartoon feel ( a chase, double takes, cartoon violence) and it is entertaining. Not something I would want to watch constantly but good to see now and then.

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