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Cartoon Classic Favorites - Best Pals - Mickey & Minnie

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment // Unrated // April 11, 2006
List Price: $14.99 [Buy now and save at Amazon]

Review by Scott Weinberg | posted April 15, 2006 | E-mail the Author
The Cartoons

(Note: This is Volume 10 in a series. The full series, so far, looks like this: #1 Starring Mickey, #2 Starring Donald, #3 Starring Goofy, #4 Starring Chip 'n' Dale, #5 Extreme Sports Fun, #6 Extreme Music Fun, #7 Extreme Adventure Fun, #8 Holiday Celebration with Mickey & Pals, #9 Classic Holiday Stories, #10 Best Pals: Mickey & Minnie, #11 Best Pals: Donald & Daisy, and #12 Best Pals: Mickey & Pluto.)

I've reviewed several of Disney's "Classic Cartoon Favorites" DVDs, and each of of them comes with 7 or 8 animated shorts, some of which have been released on earlier "Treasures" collections and others that are brand new to DVD. This review deals with Volume 10: Best Pals: Mickey & Minnie, which offers a quartet (!) of classic shorts that were previously unavailable on DVD, and several others that have since gone out of print -- which makes these 10-dollar discs a real treat for the Disney fan!

Included in Best Pals: Mickey & Minnie are the following cartoons: (The * denotes which ones are making their debut on DVD.)

1. First Aiders (1945, Charles Nichols) - Minnie needs some help with her nursing procedures, but Pluto and Figaro prove to be more trouble than they're worth. (7:30)

2. Bath Day* (1946, Charles Nichols) - Minnie's kitty gets a nice bath, but earns the mockery of the neighborhood alley cats when he steps outside. (6:38)

3. Pluto and the Gopher* (1950, Charles Nichols) - Pluto trashes Minnie's home (and garden) while trying to get rid of an annoying gopher. (6:25)

4. Figaro and Frankie* (1947, Charles Nichols) - Minnie's mischievous kitty aims to swallow a caged birdie, but has a change of heart when the local bulldog gets involved. (6:56)

5. Mickey's Rival (1936, Wilfred Jackson) - Mickey's picnic is ruined when one of Minnie's old beaus drops by -- and he's an obnoxious jerk, too. (8:18)

6. The Nifty Nineties (1941, Riley Thomson) - Mickey & Minnie take in a vaudeville show before ending up in a mild car accident. (7:30)

7. Pluto's Sweater* (1949, Charles Nichols) - Minnie knits a new sweater for Pluto, and it's a garment destined to cause all sorts of problems. (6:52)

8. Mickey's Delayed Date (1947, Charles Nichols) - The mouse oversleeps for a swanky date with Minnie, so Pluto does what he can to get the tux prepared. (6:51)

They're all a bunch of simple little shorts, to be sure, but you're getting some really great pieces of classic Disney animation that (you hope) your kids will actually want to come back to.

The DVD

Video: The original full frame (1.33:1) aspect ratio is what's replicated here, and (aside from the flaws inherent within the source material) the cartoons look pretty darn excellent. As I don't own any of the "Treasures" collections, I cannot make a fair comparison, but I suspect even the diehard Disneyites will like what they see here.

Audio: Dolby Digital Mono, which is perfectly fine in every way. There's also a French audio track, as well as optional English captions.

Extras: Disney's still touting their "Fastplay" feature that, I believe, just lets you watch everything in order from the minute you pop the disc in. (And by "everything" I also mean the first two trailers mentioned below.) I suppose the Fastplay feature is meant to allow younger viewers to just pop the disc in and go. If so, great. Me, I'm a click-around-er. The only extras to be found are some trailers for upcoming Disney DVD releases: The Little Mermaid: Special Edition, Dumbo: Special Edition, The Fox and the Hound 2, Little Einsteins: Team Up for Adventure, Leroy & Stitch, Brother Bear 2, Princess Fairy Tales, and Lady and the Tramp 2: Scamp's Adventure.

Final Thoughts

Seems kinda odd that Pluto and Figaro the kitten would get more screen-time than Mickey Mouse in a collection called "Mickey & Minnie," but there's still a lot of old-fashioned fun to be found in this 8-piece cartoon set.

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