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Rail-rodents The Cartoon Pictures Rail-rodents1954 MPAA: # 5629
Famous Studios
 featuring Herman, Katnip.

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Comments by: Rating: 4 out of 10 stars Posted: August 12, 2005

Routine and forgettable

The cat and mouse theme (or, in the case of Warner Bros, cat and canary or coyote and roadrunner), in which the prey invariably outwits the predator, has been the staple of hundreds of cartoons, and repetition is inevitable. But what distinguishes the classic Tom & Jerry, Sylvester and Roadrunner cartoons and lifts them from the rut are the characterisations and, particularly in the case of the Warner’s cartoons, the sharp cynical edge which gives them a freshness which belies their age.

Herman and Katnip, by comparison, are simply dull. The animation is faultless, but the characters, both in terms of drawing and personality, are bland in the extreme.

After the first minute you are aware that you are in for a long haul and, despite the fact that a cartoon is the ultimate in fantasy, you even begin to wonder why a freight train would have a refrigerated truck (except to freeze the cat), an agricultural machinery wagon (except to chop him into pieces), a crane (except to hit him with the hook) and a cannon (except to fire him to the North pole).

All in all, routine, uninspired and forgettable.

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