I think I saw the Aristocats once when I was little but I don’t remember much about it at all. I found it on sale a month or more ago and picked it up and decided to watch it today. I’m glad I did because this is exactly what I needed.
The movie started out with a selection of hand-drawn outlines of the cats participating in a variety of cute cat tasks. It made me really realize how much I enjoy the hand-drawn animation style from when I was a kid. Sure, the animation doesn’t look as sharp as movies do today, but the stories were fun and the music amusing and I find myself smiling and laughing more during these movies than during a lot of the modern stuff. It seems like most of the modern animation messes with my emotions more and I think I’ve wound up tearing up at some point during every one of them. Maybe that’s one of the bigger draws of the animated movies from my childhood – they are fun and amusing and not so emotionally charged.
There was a lot of positive examples of friendship and family in this movie and that really came through with the characters. The characters in the Aristocats were a lot of fun. The two dogs who conspired to keep the hat and umbrella were amusing and a pair of old friends. They each had their faults but they stuck together anyway even though they didn’t always get along or agree. The two geese were so polite and optimistic that it made me smile. The horse and the mouse were both loyal friends to the Duchess and the kittens, even though they were all different species. The Duchess was always calm, poised, and collected, but still capable of getting out of bad situations. O’Malley was charming and musical but also good at heart.
I really liked the music in the Aristocats as well. Maybe I’ve just got a thing for classic jazz right now, but it made me smile and think about trying to find a swing club or someplace where you could just go to dance and have a good time. I think modern clubs are much less classy than my mental images of what swing clubs were like.
This movie really motivated me to want to get to the part of my life where I just read, write, hike, teach, and live a quiet life. A life with kittens and without the stress of my current occupation. But that life feels like just a dream right now. An unachievable goal.
But back to the Aristocats.
I guess this movie does have a subtle sad point at the end of the movie. The Madame takes such good care of Duchess and the kittens and she loves them so much but she really doesn’t have anyone to take care of the cats if something happens to her. So she can leave all her wealth and her estate to them, but they’d still need a human to use that wealth.
Overall, I enjoyed the Aristocats. I thought it was a cute and fun movie and I would probably rate it a three on my rating scale. I’m glad I own it and will likely watch it again.