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Afi Film Fest: A Window On Some Far Shores : Thursday

March 08, 1987|CHARLES SOLOMON

"The Puppetoon Movie" (U.S.A., 1987, 7:30 p.m.). Before he produced and directed his famous science-fiction features, the late George Pal animated a charming series of stop-motion shorts known as "Puppetoons." Arnie Liebovit's uneven compilation includes some of Pal's most famous work: "Tubby the Tuba," "John Henry and Inky-Poo" and the anti-war parable "Tulips Shall Grow." But Pal never intended an audience to sit through 90 minutes of these miniatures, and the result is a bit like eating an entire box of bonbons at one sitting. In a heavy-handed new prologue featuring Gumby and numerous other characters, Liebovit suggests that Pal invented stop-motion animation--which simply isn't true.

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