RELEASE DATE: Saturday 24th February 1956
SYNOPSIS: Chip and Dale are hungry. Again. Seeing a bounty of acorns on an island across a lake, they commandeer Donald's model yacht to reach it. When Donald finds out what the chipmunks have done he is furious. Again. He will stop at nothing to get the yacht back. Who will triumph this time...?
This cartoon is very significant since it was the final Donald Duck cartoon in the regular program. There were a few single stand-alone cartoons in the decades to come, but this film marked the end of an era that began back in 1934 with The Little Red Hen and the introduction of a sailor called Donald Fauntleroy Duck.
IRVYNE: The animation seems higher quality than the usual shorts. You'll also notice that this is presented in Cinemascope widescreen... Not many short cartoons had that honour!
WENDY: I can actually understand what Chip and Dale are saying for once! They're usually talking so fast it's just jibberish. Their motivation never seems to change though, they're always chasing food. According to this cartoon, Dale might not be as dim-witted as he usually appears, considering all the clever ideas he has to foil Donald's attempts to follow them!
IRVYNE: Yeah, you also see Dale bop Chip on the head in this cartoon, whereas it's usually the other way around. Something that I just wondered (something that I NEVER wondered when I watched this as a kid...) How the heck did the chipmunks get that boat out of the bottle...? Think about it...
I think it's lovely how in this, Donald's last official short cartoon, he's repeating what he did at the very beginning: dancing his little sailor dance. It's a shame they couldn't have fit Peter Pig in there as a cameo, but I suppose no one would have got the reference. It's easy to forget that in this day and age we have easy and free access to the entire back-catalogue of Disney cartoons. In 1956, I dare say "The Wise Little Hen" hadn't been seen by the public in 22 years.
This is a fun little cartoon. It's not Donald or Chip and Dale's funniest, but it's still good for a laugh. It looks nice in its widescreen format and while it's sad to see the end of the Donald cartoons, there are still many of them that we haven't watched this year and can have a look at in the future.