Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Tuesday, December 15, 2015


Popeye as Gulliver?

No, thank goodness, although that was the original plan for this animated feature from Max and David Fleischer.  That concept was deep-sixed for the decision to "rotoscope" the title character. ("Rotoscoping" was a process invented by Max Fleischer in which a live model is photographed and the photographs are then traced over for both motion and details thus giving a more realiztic appearance to the animation.)  The man who provided the model (and voice) of Lemuel Gulliver was a radio announcer named Sam Parker.  Parker ironically won the part through a radio contest.  Parker's only other film credits would be as a voiceover in two shorts during the early Forties.

Billed as Swift's "immortal fantasy," Gulliver's Travels overlooks much a Dean Swift's satire, although it does have an anti-war sensibility that was unusual for its day.

The movie was the Fleishers' response to Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.  Preiously their sudio had concentrated on short features (Popeye, Betty Boop, Superman, and others).

The artwork is exquisite, the music is good (one song was nominated for an Oscar), and the whole movie sheer pleasure for animation buffs.

You're in for a treat.  Enjoy.

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