I’m happy to host another evening of Walt Disney
entertainment on Turner Classic Movies this Thursday night beginning at 8pm
EST/5pm PST and continuing into the wee hours. As always there is a mix of
vintage cartoons shorts, TV shows, and feature films with a particular emphasis
on Christmas and winter settings.
We begin with
one of Walt Disney’s loveliest yet least-known features, So Dear to My Heart (1949), starring Bobby Driscoll, Luana Patten,
Beulah Bondi, Burl Ives, and Harry Carey, Sr. It’s a charming film that evokes
Walt Disney’s youth in the early 20th century as seen through
rose-colored glasses. In fact, one might say that this film was one of the stepping
stones that led to the creation of Disneyland and its idealized Main Street.
settings can be seen in such diverse cartoons as Rescue Dog (1947) with Pluto, The
Grasshopper and the Ants (1934), and Corn
Chips (1951) with Chip ‘n’ Dale. A more tangible look at life in the
extreme is depicted in the Oscar-winning True-Life Adventure White Wilderness (1958) and an excellent
film from the post-Walt era, Never Cry
Wolf (1983), starring Charles Martin Smith.
is the cue for playing Babes in Toyland
(1961), Walt Disney’s update of the classic Victor Herbert operetta, starring
Annette Funicello and Tommy Sands, with Ray Bolger as the villainous Barnaby. I
was ten years old when I first saw this feature and the ingredients I liked
best were the sprinkles of animation by Ward Kimball and the Laurel-and-Hardy-like
presence of Gene Sheldon and Henry Calvin, from Disney’s Zorro TV series. I still think those are the movie’s strongest
I appreciate all the positive feedback
I’ve received for these Disney marathons on TCM…and yes, there are more of
these programs scheduled for next year. To see the complete schedule for
Thursday, click HERE.