THREE ORPHAN KITTENS (1935)
Article 4934 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by David Hand
Featuring the voice of Lillian Randolph
What it is: Disney Silly Symphony
Three kittens, abandoned in a snowstorm, take refuge through an open window into a house, and interact with the environment there.
Let’s take care of the fantastic content first. By dint of its use of talking and/or anthropomorphic animals, the vast majority of cartoons qualify for fantastic content on those grounds alone. This is one of the exceptions; the three kittens who are the main characters of this cartoon act like real kittens rather than anthropomorphized versions of them. Of course, that’s where the real appeal of this cartoon lies; it’s the superb animation of three kittens who are acting like kittens that gives the charm to this piece of animated whimsy. The fantastic content mostly manifests itself in the presence of certain animated exaggerations, such as the fact that when a kitten has his head stuck in a bottle, the head is somewhat shaped like the bottle, or in a scene where a kitten appears to be spanked by the hammers of a piano. Still, this is one of the more realistic of the Silly Symphonies. All in all, there’s not much of a story; outside of the uncertainty as to how the kittens will be greeted when their presence within the house is known, it’s mostly just a series of cute setpieces. This one is quite entertaining.