September 22, 2017


Scrappy cartoon mice are as American as baseball, apple pie, and an abiding sense of optimism that somehow endures constant alienation and glaring injustice. That combination of the wholesome and the serious defines An American Tail, a poignant re-imagining of the immigrant experience from legendary artist Don Bluth and wunderkind executive producer Steven Spielberg that dared to challenge Disney for animated musical supremacy.

Just because you find some success in America, however, doesn't mean you relinquish your underdog status. By the release of the sequel Fievel Goes West, Bluth was gone, Disney was ascendant once more, and the Mousekewitz family was still seeking a better lot in life. It was time to change the approach.

Brian Rudloff joins us for this special double feature episode, as we try to reconcile two very different films with the same core message: somewhere out there, dreams can still come true.

An American Tail (1986)
Directed by Don Bluth
Produced by Don Bluth, Gary Goldman, and John Pomeroy
Written by Judy Freudberg and Tony Geiss
Starring Phillip Glasser, Amy Green, Nehemiah Persoff, Erica Yohn, John P. Finnegan, Christopher Plummer, Madeline Kahn, and Dom DeLuise

An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
Directed by Phil Nibbelink and Simon Wells
Produced by Steven Spielberg and Robert Watts
Written by Flint Dille
Starring Phillip Glasser, Cathy Cavadini, Nehemiah Persoff, Erica Yohn, Dom DeLuise, Amy Irving, John Cleese, and James Stewart

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