Wednesday, April 14, 2010

049 The Little Goldfish

Title: The Little Goldfish
Studio: MGM
Date: 4/15/39
Credits: -
(tho it lists it as "A Rudolf Ising Production")
Series: -
Running time (of viewed version): 7:31

Synopsis: A goldfish longs to be free, and when dreaming he gets his wish to find the wild is more than he expected.

Comments: Opening title card has water effects on it, as do many of the ocean scenes; it is distracting and not done very well; they should have left it to the title card. The cartoon uses the opening sea shanty bit Popeye also uses. So it's trying to be like both Disney and Fleischer. Note this is trying to be Disney like (at least in the first sequence), unlike the Milt Gross and Captain cartoons. The undersea creatures look good. The cartoon improves immensely once it leaves the Disney-esque opening behind. And its not exactly Disney but horrible female falsetto song. And it goes down a notch in respectability when it turns out it was a dream and the lead should be happy to simply be safe at home. The woman has spectral white hands in a shot; I wonder if she has been recolored and redubbed; she is less spectral in other shots; perhaps the clown white hands are a trick of the print. Ten years later, this cartoon is mentioned as a Gold Medal Reprint in Boxoffice, page approximatey U27, 117/122


  1. Ted, do you know who was designing characters for the Ising unit at this point?

  2. No, sorry. I checked Of Mice and Magic (which I've been avoiding generally so as not to have it color my impressions of the cartoons), and no mention there (not that it was especially likely). OMaM does have a model sheet for The Bear That Couldn't Sleep, which if you're good at spotting who designed what based on the sheets might be helpful.

    I also note that OMaM has a bit about the Milt Gross shorts, which I should probably go back and add in to the entries when it's all over.

  3. The theme song sounds like Paul Whiteman's much recorded 1920 "Whispering" revived in 1951 by Les Paul.

    Seems like with Harman and Ising @Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, the "Little things" counted [i.e., e.g."The Little Mole","Little Caesario","Little Goldfish", "Little Gravelvoice",etc.,etc.]