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Leonard Maltin

Hollywood’s Kiddie Connection

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • May 15, 2012 9:25 PM
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  • 7 Comments
What do Jerry Lewis, Bugs Bunny, and Hopalong Cassidy have in common? They all recorded special material for an innovative kid-oriented Capitol Records series in the 1940s and ‘50s. This amazing output, perfectly timed for the baby boom of the post-World War II era, has now been exhaustively documented by Jack Mirtle in his self-published book 'The Capitol Records Childrens' Series: 1944 to 1956: The Complete Discography'.

The Pirates! Band Of Misfits—movie review

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • April 27, 2012 12:56 AM
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  • 0 Comments
I’m a sucker for Aardman Animations’ films, and have been ever since I first set eyes on Nick Park’s unforgettable short 'Creature Comforts' more than twenty years ago.

UPA Cartoons—At Last!

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • March 28, 2012 1:00 AM
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  • 7 Comments
I’m proud to be associated with TCM’s exclusive new three-disc DVD set of 'Jolly Frolics', the innovative, award winning UPA cartoons that have been neglected on home video so long. I’m speaking of 'Gerald McBoing Boing', 'Unicorn in the Garden', 'The Tell-Tale Heart', 'Rooty Toot Toot', and the first Mister Magoo cartoon, Ragtime Bear, among others. These shorts, made by former Disney staffers who embraced modern art and graphics, wowed pop-culture critics, audiences, and Oscar voters in the late 1940s and 50s, but haven’t been readily accessible in recent years.

The Secret World Of Arrietty—movie review

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • February 17, 2012 12:55 AM
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  • 4 Comments
We’ve come to expect so much from Japan’s Studio Ghibli—especially the films directed by Hayao Miyazaki like 'Spirited Away' and 'Howl’s Moving Castle'—

Animated Jazz—And More

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • December 29, 2011 2:21 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Gordon Goodwin is a talented musician, composer, arranger—and animation buff. Years ago he got to score a pencil-test scene called “The Bedroom Argument” that was cut from 'Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs' and unearthed for a laserdisc release of the film; you can see (and hear) it now on YouTube. He’d almost forgotten about this long-ago assignment when it turned up online, and says, “I remember how awestruck I was to be working with that iconic material!

The Adventures Of Tintin—movie review

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • December 21, 2011 1:00 AM
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  • 17 Comments
Being completely unfamiliar with Hergé’s popular illustrated stories, I came to this movie as a blank slate, with no expectations. After an imaginative opening title sequence (scored by John Williams in a sprightly mode reminiscent of 'Catch Me if You Can'), I was enveloped in the spirit of a rousing, old-fashioned adventure yarn. I only wish I felt the same way when the movie concluded.

Happy Feet Two

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • November 18, 2011 2:33 AM
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  • 3 Comments
I wasn’t the world’s biggest fan of ‘Happy Feet’, which had many good qualities but got bogged down by its ecological message (worthy though it was). The sequel still tries to tell too many stories, and winds up being a long string of dramatic climaxes, but it also plays to the first movie’s strengths: music, dance, and dramatic staging on an enormous canvas. (It’s even more impressive in IMAX 3-D, as I viewed it.) The end result may not win any prizes for narrative but it’s consistently entertaining, and a feast for the eyes.

Cruising For Movie Collectibles At Comic-Con

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • July 26, 2011 4:29 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Winnie The Pooh

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • July 15, 2011 4:16 AM
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  • 7 Comments
In an era of hyperactive, overly verbal 3-D animated entertainment, I hope there is still room for a film as sweet and gentle as Winnie the Pooh. At the screening I attended it seemed like the young adults in the audience were enjoying it even more than the kids, reliving their childhood memories of the “stubby little cubby” and his friends in the Hundred Acre Wood.

Animation Marvels—In Print And On DVD

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • January 10, 2011 5:00 AM
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  • 1 Comment
A spectacular new book about Ray Harryhausen is cause for celebration—but more about that later. The estimable Mr. H was inspired to pursue his art, and craft, by the films he saw as a boy, especially The Lost World (1925) and King Kong (1933). But the man who created the stunning animation in those films, Willis O’Brien, wasn’t the only person experimenting with the wonders of stop-motion. Steve Stanchfield, Stewart McKissick and Ken Priebe at Thunderbean Animation have compiled a dizzying DVD collection of rare short subjects appropriately titled Stop-Motion Marvels! and it’s a must for anyone interested in this field.

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