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Saturday, September 9, 2017

Gay Purr-ee (1962)

Set in turn of the 20th century in France, a country cat (Judy Garland) is tired of living on a farm and dreams of the glamorous high life in Paris. When the opportunity presents itself, she runs off to Paris while the tomcat (Robert Goulet) who loves her and his kitten pal (Red Buttons) chase after her. Co-written by Chuck Jones and directed by Abe Levitow, this animated musical has songs by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg who wrote the songs for THE WIZARD OF OZ and FINIANS' RAINBOW. The songs are serviceable but three stand out but oddly enough two of them, The Money Cat and The Horses Won't Talk are sung by Paul Frees rather than Garland or Goulet. Garland does have one good torch song, Paris Is A Lonely Town. The whole enterprise is rather charming and the animation is very colorful, often mimicking the style of the impressionists. The highlight may be Mewsette (Garland) having her portrait painted by Cezanne, Monet, Van Gogh, Seurat, Toulouse Lautrec, Gauguin, Degas among others. This was the animation giant UPA's final film. Other voice talent includes Hermione Gingold and Morey Amsterdam.

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