WARNER BROTHERS HOME
WARNER BROTHERS HOME ENTERTAINMENT ACADEMY AWARDS ANIMATION COLLECTION- 15 WINNERS, 26 NOMINEES ($45) makes the most of the consolidation of various studio libraries during the video age, bringing together theatrical cartoons produced by Warner, MGM and Fleischer Studios (Paramount). The collection assembles pretty much of the crème de la crème of animated shorts produced from the mid 1930s, all the way through the early 1960s. Additionally the collection features the likes of Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Tweety, Sylvester, Pepe Le Pew, Speedy Gonzales, Droopy, Tom and Jerry, as well as Superman and Popeye The Sailor. There is a lot of great stuff in this collection, with some titles making their DVD debut and others being carryovers from previous DVD collections.
Disc one is entitled Winners and features the following animated shorts: The Milky Way, Yankee Doodle Mouse, Mouse Trouble, Quiet Please, The Cat Concerto, Tweetie Pie, The Little Orphan, For Scent-Imental Reasons, So Much For So Little, The Two Mouseketeers, Johann Mouse, Speedy Gonzales, Birds Anonymous, Knighty-Knight Bugs and The Dot And The Line.
Disc two is entitled Nominees and features the following animated shorts: Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor, Peace On Earth, A Wild Hare, Puss Gets The Boot, Superman, Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt, Rhapsody In Rivets, The Night Before Christmas, The Blitz Wolf, Pigs In A Polka, Swooner Crooner, Walky Talky Hawky, Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Mouse and Mouse Wreckers.
Disc three is also entitled Nominees and features the following animated shorts: Hatch Up Your Troubles, Jerry's Cousin, Little Johnny Jet, Touché, Pussy Cat!, From A To Z-Z-Z-Z, Sandy Claws, Good Will To Men, Tabasco Road, One Droopy Knight, High Note, Nelly's Folly and Now Hear This.
Warner Home Video has made all the animated shorts that comprise WARNER BROTHERS HOME ENTERTAINMENT ACADEMY AWARDS ANIMATION COLLECTION- 15 WINNERS, 26 NOMINEES available in their various full screen and widescreen aspect ratios, with the CinemaScope shorts unfortunately not being 16:9 enhanced. As expected, the presentations do vary in quality, since different entities, over the course of more than four decades, produced these animated shorts. For the most part, the colors are quite vibrant, but there are instances where the hues can seem a little dull. Blacks are accurate, as are the whites. Contrast is fine for vintage animation. Film grain is noticeable in varying degrees, but never excessive. Print damage and other signs of age are pretty minimal. Digital compression artifacts are fairly well contained.
The Dolby Digital monaural soundtracks have been cleaned up in the mastering process, and they generally come across with a fairly smooth sonic quality. Sure, fidelity has its limitations, but the musical component and sound effects more than get by. Dialogue is always easy to understand. No other language tracks have been included on the DVD, although English subtitles are provided.
Music underscores the basic interactive menus, which allow one access to the standard cartoon selection and set up features, as well as some nice supplements. Fourteen of the animated shorts include running Audio Commentaries with various animators and/or historians. Some shorts also feature isolated Music Only tracks. Also included is Drawn For Glory: Animation's Triumph At The Oscars an hour-long program documenting animation’s origins and eventual recognition as a movie art form. Lastly, we have What's Cookin' Doc? a cartoon in which Bugs Bunny makes his own personal pitch for Oscar glory.
WARNER BROTHERS HOME ENTERTAINMENT ACADEMY AWARDS ANIMATION COLLECTION- 15 WINNERS, 26 NOMINEES offers fans a lot of great shorts in a single collection. Warner’s presentations look great, although the lack of the 16:9 enhancement on the CinemaScope cartoons is disappointing. Still, the collection is recommended for the shorts that it offers.
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