Anyone fancy a bit of ruff
Lady, a pampered Cocker Spaniel, lives in the lap of luxury with her owners Jim Dear and Darling in an affluent suburb of Paris. But her life of luxury takes a turn for the worse when her owners bring a baby into the home. On top of this Jim Dear and Darling decide to go away for a bit, and Darling's Aunt Sarah comes to stay with her meddlesome twin Siamese cats, Si and Am. After the twin terrors start causing havoc, Lady finds herself being blamed for all the trouble and after she is fitted with a muzzle decides to escape from the home.
Out on the streets in an unusual world, Lady comes across Tramp, a cocky male dog from the rough side of town. After helping Lady to remove the muzzle, he takes her out for a night on the town, Tramp style, ending up with a romantic Italian meal thanks to two canine loving waiters. Having spent the perfect, romantic evening with Tramp she decides that she has to return home to protect the baby. But as she makes her way back, she is caught by the dog catcher and thrown into the pound, where she learns all about Tramps philandering ways from a free and easy dog named Peg. Upset as being tricked by Tramp, she happily returns home, even though Aunt Sarah chains her up so that she cannot escape again.
Lady and the Tramp was the 15th animated picture to come out of the Walt Disney studios. Filled with stunning animation, wonderful songs and a brilliant classical story line, this has to be one of my favourite films to come out of Walt Disney studios. Unlike many of the Disney films from this era, Lady and the Tramp is different, due to the fact that it doesn't really have a completely nasty villain, and although Aunt Sarah doesn't like dogs, she is not in the same league as say Cruella De Vil, "One Hundred and One Dalmatians". In a way this makes it a much easier film to watch, although the hardened nose cynic would say that this makes the story line very weak. But in loosing a true villain, Disney has put the emphasis on the love story between the 2 dogs from different sides of the tracks. How many of us who remember watching this years ago, still remember the magical romantic scene with the meatballs and spaghetti.
From an adult's perception, the key to the appeal of Lady and the Tramp is in its characters. Firstly you have Lady, a prim Cocker Spaniel who has had it easy, but then when she ends up in a rough unusual world, she adapts and finds a "bit of rough" or should that be "be bit of ruff" that she bonds with. On the other end of the scale you have Tramp, a jack the lad type dog, whose raffish charm would win anyone over. The characterization is so good, that I could easily see elements of people's personalities that I know in the dogs, not that I'm saying my friends are dogs. As well as the main two characters you have a great selection of other animals including the annoying Siamese cats Si and Am, as well as Tramps mates from the streets, all of which are equally as well characterized as the lead pairing. The human element really does take a back seat in this film, and although brilliantly drawn, are not shown to the same extent as the cats and dogs.
A big part of the characterization is through the voices used for each of the characters. These come from many stalwarts of Disney movies such as Barbara Luddy and Bill Thompson but also included the voice of Alan Reed as Boris, who then went onto become the voice of Fred Flinstone. Each of the voices fit really well with the characters and adds to its whole appeal.
From a child's perspective, they will love watching the wonderful animation and the simple story. Having watched this recently with my young nephew and nieces, they were glued to the film for the duration and then watched it again straight away afterwards. Plus, with all early Disney films there is a strong musical element with memorable songs such as "He's a Tramp", "Siamese Cat Song" and "Bella Notte" all performed by Sonny Burke & Peggy Lee. Now, although I enjoy the songs in the film, after the fifth rendition of young children singing "We are Siamese, if you please", enough is enough.
Another big part of the appeal to Lady and The Tramp is in its animation and artistry. Compared to the modern animated films which rely on CGI to provide the entertainment, Lady and The Tramp, of course, uses the old technique of drawings to create the movements. It is amazing to look at the amount of detail which goes into each scene and personally I prefer this style of animation to CGI. Although both techniques are achieved through skilful operators, the amount of time, effort and art which went into creating the old style animations seems much more impressive and enchanting.
Having first seen this back in the 80s, I admit to falling in love with it straight away. In my opinion, it is the best of the original Disney movies and it is a shame that modern day animated films seem to lack the charm and magic of these early master pieces. Although, predominantly aimed at the younger generation, this has so much appeal to an adult audience as well, and is perfect viewing for all the family. Even at the higher than normal DVD price, this whole package of film and bonus features is brilliant value.
Tags: Dog Movies