Friday, August 27, 2010

The Merry Dwarfs - December 16, 1929

The Merry Dwarfs is the 5th toon in the Silly Symphonies series. This film is definitely an interesting can be found in the From the Vault section of its DVD.

Tucked away in a magical forest is the home of the 3-inch tall merry dwarfs. These creatures who make homes out of pumpkins and mushrooms are really the first fairytale-like characters to be featured in the Silly Symphonies.

The dwarfs offer many opportunities for great gags. This dwarf is at first angry about breaking his broom (actually a leaf) until he discovers his long beard works just as well.

The resident shoemaker dwarf is busy creating 6 pairs of shoes for his sleeping customer...all while dancing merrily of course.

The blacksmiths create shoes for the village's rough and tough grasshopper. I enjoy these fanciful shorts because Disney has such a great way of dreaming up inventive ways to mirror regular society life.

The Merry Dwarfs is placed in the From the Vault section because it heavily features alcohol. The reason why the dwarfs are so merry is because they regularly down mugs of beer.

Through jolly dancing, the dwarfs are able to drink barrels of their own magical beer. All this beer of course causes some rather strange things to occur...

Funny dances and using daisies as May Poles are just some side effects of dwarf beer. This dancing should also indicate to you the animation style of Ub Iwerks.

These dwarfs showcase very interesting and creative forms of dancing...but then again that's to be expected after a few beers...

A rather giddy dwarf manages to use a leaf as a frilly and playful dress. This little scene actually is a great piece of solid animation.

One of the funniest moments in the toon comes when 2 dwarfs fall accidentally into a barrel of beer. As they emerge...

...they can't seem to stand straight. This is some great animation that has no boundaries as the dwarfs stumble here and there all over the screen.

The best part comes at the end of the short. The background starts to jumble and twist as the dwarfs become progressively drunker. It's a great effect!

The Merry Dwarfs is not an outstanding toon, but it is a very entertaining film to watch. The inclusion of an alcohol-related subject alone is a good reason to view this short. Great animation that is silly and entertaining makes this film a solid early Silly Symphony.

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