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Running Down 'Rabbit'

July 02, 1988

"Who Framed Roger Rabbit" is a technical miracle, but nowhere is it apparent that any of its 750 creators ever saw a Walt Disney film ("The Animated Arena of 'Roger Rabbit,' " by Sheila Benson, June 22).

"Roger Rabbit" has no soul! Where are the scenes that tug at the heartstrings, like Snow White lying pale in death, surrounded by the grieving dwarfs, or Bambi being told his mother died? Disney knew the emotions that could be wrung from a pile of painted celluloids, and the world is richer for his vision.

Where is the music? Surely Toontown has some songs; cartoons are famous for them. Yet there is no "When You Wish Upon a Star" or "Whistle While You Work."

Where are characters like Minnie Mouse, Wendy, Lady and the Blue Fairy to soften the impact of the vulgar, sex-drenched females who abound in "Roger Rabbit"?

The Disney plots were pure enough to be understood and loved by the poorest street sweeper in Bombay. Rabbit's plot is something about the old Pacific Red Cars and building a freeway to Pasadena. Such a subject in \o7 this\f7 film is surely incomprehensible and irrelevant to people living outside Southern California.

"Roger Rabbit" offers no pathos, no quiet moments for reflection. It is a clear case of a first-rate production being betrayed by a third-rate script.

I'm not saying it should have been another Disney film; progress should be made from that.

But it should have been a film that touches every human being--the capstone of 70 years of animated genius--and it isn't.

MALCOLM WILLITS

Hollywood

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