Saturday, July 31, 2010

Dumbo Part 16

Once again, the film relies on contrast to make a point. The preceding sequence had the clowns celebrating their successful performance. Here, Dumbo is depressed over the very same performance. The performances in this sequence are also contrasting; Timothy is consistently upbeat, failing to rouse Dumbo out of his lethargy. Timothy tries praise and then a peanut, but Dumbo is indifferent to both. Finally, Timothy mentions visiting Dumbo's mother, and that is the only thing that cheers Dumbo up.

It doesn't look like Mrs. Jumbo will get a reprieve anytime soon. Her cage is covered in warning signs and within it, she's chained to the walls and weighted down.

From an animation standpoint, it is interesting that the personality close-ups of Timothy are done by Fred Moore and Dumbo is done by Bill Tytla, but when both characters share a shot, the are generally done by John Lounsbery and sometimes Tytla. The shared shots contain lots of character interaction, such as Dumbo lifting Timothy in shot 3. It's easier and more efficient to have one animator handle both characters rather than have two animators jointly plan the interaction. However, that didn't stop Lounsbery from giving Dumbo a bad eyeline in shot 6.1. Dumbo's pupils are nowhere near the direction of Timothy.


Eric Noble said...

I love how you bring up all of these little subtleties in the film. It adds a whole new richness to the film. It's also nice to know who animated what in the film so I can study it. Great post.

As for the bad eyeline, I guess even the best animators screw up. That's why they usually could redo it. However, it wouldn't have been possible to do that on Dumbo, seeing as how it was supposed to be made quickly and cheaply. I'm sure there were lots of things Walt wishes he could have redone on this picture, at least from a technical standpoint.

Steven Hartley said...

Its interesting that so many effects animators are credited in this small sequence, probably mostly shadows and this sequence is more up to date than the other Dumbo drafts.

This sequence has my favourite Bill Tytla animation, I love the Dumbo scenes, this is Tytla AT HIS BEST in this sequence.

Zartok-35 said...

This sequence stands as further proof of Billy Bob's inability to properly cast second string animators.