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More Kittens

A Silly Symphony

Release Date : December 19, 1936

Running Time : 8:11

Synopsis

The three kittens once again get into trouble, this time finding a friend and protector in a big Saint Bernard dog.

Characters

Three Orphan Kittens
Mammy Twoshoes
Toliver, the St. Bernard

Credits

Director
Dave Hand
Asst. Director
Jack Cutting
Animation
Frenchy de Tremaudan
Ward Kimball
Leonard Sebring
Bob Stokes
Bob Wickersham
Frank Thomas
Story
Bill Cottrell
Joe Grant
Bob Kuwahara
Music
Frank Churchill
Voices
Lillian Randolph
Esther Campbell

Cut Scenes

A scene where Mammy Twoshoes slips on a bar of soap and lands on her bottom has been cut out.

Video

United States
Cartoon Classics : First Series : Volume 14 : Animal Tales
France
Silly Symphonies Volume 2

Laserdiscs

United States
Cartoon Classics : Animal Tales

DVD

Disney Treasures : More Silly Symphonies

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 32: Goin' to the Dogs
Mickey's Mouse Tracks: Episode 5
The Mickey Mouse Club : December 6, 1956

Technical Specification

Color Type: Technicolor
Animation Type: Standard animation
Sound Mix: Mono
Aspect Ratio: 1.37 : 1
Negative Format: 35mm
Print Format: 35mm
Cinematographic Process: Spherical
Original Language: English

Released by United Artists Pictures

Comments


From Ryan Kilpatrick at The Disney Film Project : Remember a few reviews back, when I said how the Silly Symphonies had rebounded with The Country Cousin? Yeah, strike that. It was temporary, because I had a hard time watching More Kittens and getting through it.

Before I get to what I didn’t like, let me say that the short is very pretty. The backgrounds are lush, the characters are well drawn, and it plays out well. It’s a short that is very bright, colorful and visually appealing. That is about all I liked about it, though.

Why? Well, for the first part, it’s not like Three Orphan Kittens, this short’s predecessor, was anything great. The three kittens in that short return here, but I’m not sure why. There is nothing that really distinguishes one kitten from another other than their coloring. They are not compelling characters, because they don’t do anything really different from one another.

The idea of this one is that the kittens are chased out of the house and into the yard, where they have to hide from the “Mammy” character. Perhaps part of what colors my thoughts on this short is that I find the Mammy stereotype so offensive, although I understand why it’s in the short.

Regardless, the kittens take up with a St. Bernard in the yard, who lazily becomes their friend and protector. At least, that is what I suppose is the point. In reality, the kittens become embroiled with a fly, a turtle and a bird, all without the dog really doing much for them.

There is a little interference from the St. Bernard, but the constant gag is that the kittens or the animals they are fighting hide or get lost in the folds of the dog’s mouth. The best gag of the entire short comes when the kittens are chasing a little blue bird, and the blue bird whistles “Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?” from inside the dog’s mouth, then keeps getting pushed out by the dog’s tongue like a cuckoo clock.

The majority of the short is just a cutesy take on the kittens’ interaction with these various animals, but there’s no driving force to the narrative. Nothing really keeps things going, and so it was very tough for me to watch and remain interested. I found my attention slipping.

The ending features the Mammy character chasing the cats again, only for them to hide in the fur of the St. Bernard. He doesn’t give them up, and the short ends. Yes, that’s all there is to it.

I can see why this short could have been popular. It’s pure fluff, a pastoral tale and escape from the horrors of the Great Depression. But it doesn’t hold up, especially to audiences today who have seen the more sophisticated work that Disney did during this same period.


From Mac : Yep, it's a boring cute antics cartoon. Maybe the crowd who like Water Babies would go for it? I think this cutesy-pukesy sort of cartoon must have been popular enough in its time because there are a lot like this from the other studios as well. Thankfully Disney made no more 'Orphan Kitten' cartoons after this inferior sequel. I wonder if Aunt Delilah got her way and "discontinuated" the series herself?
From Jerry Edwards : Excellent animation with some interesting scenes - the kittens' main mischief is outdoors in this sequel, compared to indoors in the 1935 Three Orphan Kittens. Also it's winter in the first cartoon, spring in this sequel.
From Ryan : I'm sorry, but I was mistaking when the St. Bernard in Alpine Climbers was similar to the one in Three Orphan Kittens. There is no St. Bernard (or any dogs for that matter) in that short. It was actually this very short that he appears in. It's pretty much a similar plot to its original Three Orphan Kittens with the kittens hiding from the black maid.
From Baruch Weiss : A cute cartoon involving three kittens getting into all sorts of trouble with an appearance of the politically incorrect maid. I loved the scene where the bird goes into the dogs mouth and tweets "Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf"!

Referenced Comments