Saturday, August 17, 2013

"The Whale Who Wanted to Sing at the Met" - Walt Disney (1946)

One of the greatest things about the old cartoons was that they opened up different avenues of entertainment for millions of kids. As a matter of fact, most kids of my generation were probably first exposed to the classics through cartoons such as this one by Disney from 1946.

The plot is fairly simple; a sailor has brought home stories of a singing whale named Willie, which nobody believes. Professors are called in to study the mammal, and all agree that he has swallowed a man. But when he begins to harmonize with himself in several voices, they are all stumped.

A seagull is dispatched to ascertain the validity of the story, and when it is revealed to be the truth, the Captain sets out to capture Willie. He has dreams of making the whale a star, as well of his own grandeur. In his mind Willie will travel the world, singing opera on stage, and making the Captain rich.

But, in his quest for fame and fortune he kills the whale, ending his own dreams. But Willie goes on to sing forever in the depths of the sea. There are something’s in nature that can never be captured, or caged.

Beautifully directed by Directed by Clyde Geronimi and Hamilton Luske, this cartoon has Nelson Eddy performing all of the singing. This is a wonderful introduction, for children of all ages, to the world of Opera.

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