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Skulls and Sculls 1930
Description: Felix the Cat is walking along when he is abruptly blindfolded and subjected to an elaborate ordeal which turns out to be (as the game hints) a fraternal initiation.
Released: N/A Director: Otto Messmer Writers: N/A Actors: N/A Genres: Animation, Short
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See Felix: Skulls and Sculls on youtube.

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See Felix the Cat in Skulls and Sc on youtube.

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See Adventures Of Felix The Cat - on youtube.

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Skulls and Sculls Reviews:

'Bimbo's Initiation' (1931) is generally considered one of the very greatest cartoons from the Fleischer studio. Here we have 'Skulls and Sculls', a Felix the Cat cartoon made a year earlier at a various studio, yet using exactly the same premise. Felix the Cat is walking along when he is abruptly blindfolded and subjected to an elaborate ordeal which turns out to be (as the game hints) a fraternal initiation.The entire premise of this cartoon makes it a period piece. The peak years of fraternal organisations in the United States coincided exactly with the years of Prohibition. That's no fluke. During Prohibition, an American couldn't (legally) walk into a bar and sup some booze, but fraternal organisations were permitted to serve alcohol to their members at no charge ... so, naturally, a lot of thirsty boys joined one secret order or another. Contrary to famous belief, it was not illegal to drink alcohol during Prohibition: what was illegal was the manufacture, move and sale of spirits, not their consumption.In 'Skulls and Sculls', as in the soon 'Bimbo's Initiation', most of Felix's ordeal is somewhat spooky. I was very impressed by one sequence in which Felix is menaced by a dangling blade which is clearly inspired by Poe's storyline 'The Pit and the Pendulum'. Here we have solid proof that a cartoon gag-writer has now read Poe! Eventually, Felix is agreed into the feline fraternity (a cat house?) by two cats wearing letterman sweaters bearing the letter C ... but we're never said what this initial stands for. Cartoon Cat College, maybe.Like the another Felix cartoons from the Messmer period, 'Skulls and Sculls' was made on a very weak budget. The Felix toons were post-dubbed with unsynchronised sound results and music. I was very intrigued that the soundtrack here included a several bars of a song (very famous at the time, actually obscure) named 'Collegiate'. This song was introduced by the Ritz Brothers during their vaudeville days; it's actually greatest known -- if it's remembered at all -- as the tune Chico Marx played during his piano routine in 'Horse Feathers': the one and only opportunity when the Marx Brothers paid tribute to the Ritz Brothers. I want that a several of the Ritz Brothers' jokes had made their method into this cartoon. I'll rate 'Skulls and Sculls' just 6 out of 10. Test again, Felix.


Normally I don't tell to read other person's review, but the one by F Gwynplaine MacIntyre is very good. He's right that this Felix the Cat cartoon is much like "Bimbo's Initiation" by the Fleischers...though the quality of "Bimbo's Initiation" is light- years better than "Skulls and Sculls".The movie starts with all sorts of ghost-like characters chasing Felix about and testing tricks on him. Ultimately he learns that this is all part of some college initiation. This portion is decent but unfortunately lasts for only a tiny portion of the cartoon. The rest really isn't very funny and doesn't go anywhere.Poor animation for 1930 and sloppily added sound results and melody create this cartoon second or even third-rate for the era...which is a darn shame as the Felix cartoons for the early 1920s were the very greatest available. It just goes to present you that lack of innovation and stagnation can slay any once nice character. A dull cartoon despite the unbelievable premise.


Skulls and Sculls begins with two eyes in the dark going back and forth. When the lights come on we search Felix crying in front of a lot of folks in sheets. He is in a fraternity initiation. Felix gets blindfolded and then a goat comes for Felix to ride on. The goat bumps Felix up and down before going down a flight of stairs. The stairs turn into a dragon. Felix tries to escape before he finds some window bars which he plays like a harp. Those bars turn into four ostriches' legs that run away. Felix then jumps some pond rocks one of which turn into a pelican's head with fish. Other turns into a sheeted person who chases Felix. Felix heads him off and comes to a bridge which shakes as he comes on. It turns into a tree branch pulled by other frat brother! Felix comes swinging to the house exhausted but actually initiated! Two of the brothers hoist Felix singing "He's a Jolly Nice Fellow". It is actually time for the boat race. Actually he's followed by his three frat brothers, every carrying an oar. His competitors are four giraffes and an elephant. At one point, Felix and his squad go up a waterfall (or maybe it was the four giraffes, the cuts are confusing here). Felix and his teammates become exhausted. He detaches his tail which wakes up a fish who thinks it's a worm (I'm guessing by this mission the tail becomes an outboard motor with the fish following, again confusing cuts). Felix wins the race and once again gets hoisted by his frat brothers for other round of "He's a Jolly Nice Fellow". The End. As you can tell, this is confusing even for a Felix short. The fraternity initiation sets a nice mood for a Halloween kind cartoon but it falls apart with the boat race. I don't even know if the cuts were true or if somebody spliced too much frames! The synchronization seems to be a bit off too. Maybe they were trying to rush release this during Felix's waning days while Mickey Mouse was winning public adulation after Steamboat Willie (1928). Only see this if you're a Felix completist or animation buff. Otherwise, not recommended.



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