Poster

Donald's Snow Fight

A Donald Duck Cartoon

Release Date : April 10, 1942

Running Time : 7:14

Synopsis

After getting Donald's dander up in a sledding "accident", it's all out snow-war between Donald and his nephews.

Characters

Donald Duck
Huey, Dewey and Louie

Credits

Director
Jack King
Animation
Jack Hannah
Ed Love
Jim Armstrong
Walt Clinton
Jack Gayek
Effects Animation
Andy Engman
Story
Carl Barks
Inbetweener
Lee J. Ames

Video

United States
A Walt Disney Christmas
Germany
Weihnachtpass mit Micky und Donald
Donald Duck in die Größte Show der Welt
France
Donald Superstar
Italy
Da Tutti Noi a Tutti Voi
Buon Compleanno Paperino

Laserdiscs

United States
A Walt Disney Christmas
Japan
Cartoon Carousel
Donald's Golden Jubilee

DVD

United States
Disney Treasures : Wave 5 : The Chronological Donald Volume 2
Germany
Disney Treasures : Wave 5 : The Chronological Donald Volume 2
Weihnachtspass mit Micky and Donald
Micky's Lustiger Adventskalender Verschworung der Superschurken
Italy
3 … 2 … 1 … E Natale
United Kingdom
Countdown to Christmas

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 34: Donald's Nephews
Mickey's Mouse Tracks: Episode 43

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 RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.

Comments

From Ryan Kilpatrick at The Disney Film Project : There’s nothing I love more in doing this blog than running across a cartoon that I have seen a hundred times, and realizing where it falls into the Disney timeline. Knowing that I have seen a short before, and then placing it into context is an amazing feeling. I’m sure that makes me a Disney nerd, but didn’t we know that already?

Donald’s Snowfight is one of those shorts. For years, growing up with Disney Channel (when they showed the shorts and characters), this short was shown around Christmas time. There’s a good reason for that, too – it’s really, really good. This is the short that formed my opinions of Donald and his nephews before I began this project.

It’s a classic Donald vs. the nephews set up – Donald goes out to enjoy the day of snow, and ends up getting into it with Huey, Dewey and Louie. Donald wears a ridiculous overcoat for the first part of the short which adds greatly to the humor. At one points he even grabs hold of a branch and swings back and forth, like a bell.

The real fun begins though when Donald speeds downhill to destroy the boys’ snowman. After they painstakingly created the snowman, Donald ruins it, sparking the war between the two. The first shot belongs to the boys, as they create a snowman that has a rock hidden inside. When Donald tries to destroy that one, he and his overcoat end up much worse for the wear.

The all out war begins from there, as each side builds an elaborate foothold out of ice. The boys construct a large fort style construct, while Donald builds a boat, laying siege to their fort. The imaginative constructs and use of ice in this short are fantastic.

Donald wins the early rounds of the war, firing snowballs at the boys and knocking them over. At one point, he even “bowls” them over, literally, as the boys turn into bowling pins and Donald gets a strike in knocking them down. But the creativity of Donald’s nephews cannot be underestimated.

The boys start using two methods to take down Donald – fire and ice. The ice gets built in the form of bombs, which the boys put mouse traps inside. Then they start launching arrows that are on fire. The end result is a melting of Donald’s boat that is absolutely hilarious.

Donald’s Snowfight is a short that I absolutely loved. I loved it before when I saw it at Christmas time and I still loved it today when I watched it again. It is everything you want from a Disney short.


From Patrick Malone : I suppose wars have been started over a lot less. And as far as naval battles go, Jack Aubrey certainly has never heard of the tactics used in the finale to this short. Still, you can't exactly say that in this case, Donald didn't bring it upon himself.

Donald sticks his head out of the door to see how the weather is, and boy, is it cold! So cold, in fact, that his bill turns blue. You'd think that on a day like this Donald would have been content to stay inside by the fire, but out he goes to enjoy a day of sledding, After pulling his sled up the hill singing "Jingle Bells" all the way, (giving a final little "ding-dong" at the top of the hill) he sees his nephews have had the same idea and are busy building a snowman.

Someday Donald might learn to control his more troublesome tendencies, but not this day. With an evil glint in his eyes. he decides to have a little fun at his nephews expense. Aiming his sled with military precision, he takes off and BLAMMO! ... hits the just completed snowman, raining the pieces down on the three.

Huey, Dewey and Louie plot a little revenge. Knowing that Donald couldn't possibly resist doing it again; they build another. They've got Donald figured out, alright, as he aims again, takes off and BLAMMO! ... but this time the snowman disguises a rock which blasts Donald so bad even his fur coat goes to pieces. This, of course, means war.

Huey, Dewey and Louie hole up in their snow fort, while Donald constructs a battleship out of ice in the middle of a nearby pond. Donald gets the first salvo; a perfectly constructed ice mortar that scatters the nephews like so many bowling pins. Donald goes for the spare with a snow bowling ball. Another mortar splits their flagpole straight down the middle in three pieces giving them a three for one whack on their collective bottoms.

Donald backs down for a few minutes thinking that the nephews must be ready to give up by now. Not a chance. They are busy preparing their own mortars, but booby trapping them as well. Their return attack strikes Donald with everything they've got; mousetraps, crossbow delivered snowballs, flaming coals (which turn part of Donald's boat into a perfect death's head; he should have taken the hint.) Their final salvo is a bit of a stretch (flaming snowballs?), but they seem to do the trick and reduce Donald's battleship into a quickly melting torrent of water which dunks him into the drink; splashing back up and instantly freezing again.

Okay, enough with the snow battle, the nephews think; let's play cowboys and Indians. And with Donald as their ice sculptured totem pole, they have the perfect prop.


From Greg Honycut : Did anyone else besides me notice that when Donald had that piece of snow on his head and then it fell off, it looked just like Goofy's head?
From Rocky Johnson : This is a cute cartoon with Donald's nephews beating him at his own game.
From Ryan : I remember first seeing this cartoon on either NBC or CBS (it was being aired before Mickey's Christmas Carol). My favorite part was the snow fight scene on the frozen lake. Well the nephews end up winning (seems obvious since Donald was outnumbered 3-1) and Donald falls into the frigid water, freezing into a "ducksicle."
From Josh Boehme : My favorite Disney Short. I can't wait until it's released again on DVD. The snow fight towards the end is absolutely innovative and hilarious.
From Baruch Weiss : This cartoon has been featured on an Xmas video even though it has nothing to do with the holiday. Its just a winter themed cartoon where Donald starts the trouble and destroys his nephew's snowman so the nephews get back at him and have a snowball fight with Donald as the loser (obvious, as Ryan has said, since Donald was outnumbered 3-1).
From Julie Arsenault : This short is one of my favorite Donald Duck cartoons and perfect for the Christmas Holidays.

I love it when the boys Huey, Dewey & Louie sang "For he's a Jolly Good Fellow" while building a snowman but it was kind of mean when Donald wrecked it; another scene I like is the whole snow fight scene; it's very, very, funny when Donald's icy bombshell, split the boys' flag pole into threes, and the parts started spanking them.


From Dino Cencia : Another great Christmas short for the holidays! Donald and his nephews are outside playing in the snow but then they start a snow fight after Donald destroyed the nephews snowman. My favorite part is when the nephews shot a stick of fire and it went into Donald's frozen ship and it starts melting and it turned into frozen water and Donald fell into the frozen water and he's up freezed up like a totem pole. In the beginning of the cartoon, Donald sees snow outside and opens the door and it's cold outside and his bill turns blue. I guess Jack Frost was nipping at Donald's nose like "The Christmas Song". Great cartoon! I give it a 950.
From Billy Joe : I have watched this short online. This is my favorite Donald Duck cartoon. I just loved the rivalry of Donald and his three nephews in this short. It's hilarious and highly recommended!
From Mike : I have seen this cartoon dozens of times. To me it is Donald's best cartoon. The snow battle is very entertaining all around. Absolutely hilarious.

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