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Classic Cartoon Favorites: Volume 4
Starring Chip 'N Dale DVD Review

Buy Classic Cartoon Favorites: Volume 4 - Starring Chip 'N Dale from Amazon.com Classic Cartoon Favorites: Volume 4 - Starring Chip 'N Dale
DVD Details

Running Time: 63 Minutes / Rating: Not Rated
1.33:1 Fullscreen, Dolby Digital Mono (English)
Subtitles: English; Closed Captioned

DVD Release Date: January 11, 2005
Originally Released Between 1947 and 1954
Single-sided, single-layered disc (DVD-5)
Suggested Retail Price: $14.99
White Keepcase

Review by Jack Seiley

At last, we have a DVD release devoted to Disney’s lovable chipmunk buddies. While they’ve never been as high-profile as Mickey, Donald, or Goofy, Chip ‘N Dale have remained two of the most appealing cartoon characters through the years. Starting out as foils for Donald Duck to overcome in his cartoons, the two pals eventually got their own series – even though it only amounted to 3 shorts when all was said and done.

Classic Cartoon Favorites: Volume 4 – Starring Chip ‘N Dale contains 9 shorts spanning the career of the squeaky little pals. It includes 2 of the 3 cartoons under the chipmunks’ banner, and rest is made up mostly of Donald Duck shorts, with a Pluto cartoon thrown in as well. Although the starring characters vary, each short prominently features the amusing antics of Chip ‘N Dale.

Reviews of the individual cartoons follow, in the random order they appear on the disc.

"Chicken in the Rough" (1951) (7:09)

While retrieving some acorns from a farmyard, Dale mistakes some hen’s eggs for large acorns. While checking them out, one of them hatches, and in trying to get the chick to get back into its shell, he gets mistaken for the chick by the mother. Dale finds it frustrating, especially when the rooster tries to teach him to eat worms, but Chip finds it hilarious.

"Chip 'an Dale" (1947) (6:43)

Donald takes a portion of the chipmunks’ tree for firewood, provoking the little rodents to sneak into his cabin and get it back. At first, they have some difficulty with the feisty duck, but they find a way to make good use of a giant snowball to defeat him.

"Out of Scale" (1951) (7:18)

When Chip and Dale’s tree doesn’t fit in with the scale of Donald’s backyard miniature railroad diorama (which seems to have been inspired by Walt Disney’s own mini train), the duck chops it down, causing the little guys to take up residence in one of the little houses. However, they find a very clever way to convince Donald to put the tree back.

"Chicken in the Rough" "Chip an' Dale" "Out of Scale"

"Two Chips and a Miss" (1952) (6:55)

In my favorite of the chipmunks’ cartoons, the two pals unknowingly both go to see the ravishing rodent babe Clarice at the Acorn Club. Once there, they start to compete for her attention, eventually ending up performing with her on stage. This has to be one of the flat-out cutest shorts put out by the Disney studio, and I find it to be the funniest.

"Food for Fuedin'" (1950) (7:04)

When Pluto decides to hide his bone in Chip ‘N Dale’s tree, he manages to disrupt the chipmunk’s stash of acorns. The clever tree-dwellers crawl into some big gloves and use them to aggravate the big pooch.

"Working For Peanuts" (1953) (6:49)

In this toon, Chip ‘N Dale discover a new kind of nut! No, not a crazy person – a peanut! When seeing Donald’s elephant perform for peanuts in a local zoo, the two mischievous chipmunks try to sneak in and steal the pachyderm’s stash.

"Food for Fuedin'" "Out on a Limb" "Three For Breakfast"

"Out On a Limb" (1950) (6:37)

Donald seems to be a duck of many talents, as in this cartoon, he finds himself as a tree trimmer . . . who just happens to be clipping the tree that belongs to the stars of this set. Chip ‘N Dale at first mistake Donald’s clipping tool for a monster, but once they see that the duck’s behind it, they provoke some angry quaking.

"Three For Breakfast" (1948) (7:10)

Our favorite chipmunks smell a wonderful scent coming from Donald’s kitchen. After they discover that he’s baking some delicious pancakes, they find some inventive ways of stealing some flapjacks for themselves. (There’s a Chinese stereotype in this one – where’s Leonard Maltin when you need him?!)

"Dragon Around" (1954) (7:04)

After reading a book of fairy tales, Chip ‘N Dale mistake Donald’s steam shovel for a giant, fire-breathing dragon. The rodents suit up as knights and go to battle with the metal monster to save their treehouse.


The shorts are all displayed in their correct aspect ratios of about 1.33:1. The video quality is disappointing. The image on all the shorts is overly soft and quite dirty. Some of them almost look comparable to VHS quality. This is true of all the shorts on that make their DVD debut in the Classic Cartoon Favorites series – including all those on this disc, and few on Volume 2 – Starring Donald. It’s obvious that there wasn’t much care taken to restore or clean up these shorts. They don’t look downright awful, but they could use a lot of improvement.

The Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono soundtrack suits the cartoons fine. The track sounds dated, but it offers generally good balance, making for a pleasing mix.

Starring Chip 'N Dale Main Menu "Working For Peanuts"


Besides the toons, there’s no extra material to be found. The only thing that could possibly be constituted as a “bonus” on this DVD would be the option for Disney’s FastPlay, which allows the shorts to play out without having to select them individually. Ever wished DVDs were more like VHS? Here’s your answer!

When FastPlay begins, a voiceover says a selection of a bonus features will be included. That is true of other DVDs equipped with FastPlay, but not in this case. All we get are the shorts themselves.

Previews for the highly anticipated 2005 Platinum Edition DVDs, Bambi and Cinderella, play before the cartoons when choosing FastPlay. They can also be found under the “Sneak Peeks” menu, alongside previews for the DVD releases of Mulan II and the Miyazaki Wave 2 titles: Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, Porco Rosso, and The Cat Retuns.

The menus are enhanced for 16:9 televisions, and feature lively music. The main menu features some animation depicting sparkles and lighting. The disc comes in a standard, white amaray keepcase. Included are a 1-page insert that lists the cartoons and advertises other volumes of the Classic Cartoon Favorites and an advertisement for March's Disney Learning Adventures.

"Two Chips and a Miss" "Dragon Around"


This volume of Classic Cartoon Favorites is the easiest to recommend, as there’s never been a Region 1 release of Chip ‘N Dale cartoons on DVD until now. Though the presentation is disappointing, it doesn’t hinder the enjoyment of these funny shorts.

Of course, this stuff could show up on the format again in the Walt Disney Treasures line (and I’m assuming with a superior restoration). The Donald and Pluto shorts seen here will certainly show up in future Treasures volumes of those respective characters, but the question is: Where will the 3 Chip ‘N Dale shorts be presented? A good guess would be that they’d be part of an assorted Treasures set, featuring various cartoon characters, but when that would happen is too difficult to judge at this point.

So in the end, I would definitely recommend this release to anyone who wants an enjoyable sampling of the cartoons the chipmunks have been featured in. Some may choose to wait for the material to show up on the Treasures, but I would even recommend it to them too, as nothing is firm yet and it might be somewhat of a wait.

More on the DVD

UltimateDisney.com | Review Index | Upcoming Disney DVDs | Classic Cartoon Favorites: Wave 1 | Walt Disney Treasures Page

Related Reviews
Classic Cartoon Favorites: Volume 1 - Starring Mickey
Classic Cartoon Favorites: Volume 2 - Starring Donald
Classic Cartoon Favorites: Volume 3 - Starring Goofy
Davy Crockett: Two Movie Set (with Chip 'N Dale short "The Lone Chipmunks")

Reviewed January 14, 2005.

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