The last animated feature to have been personally approved by Walt Disney is a Major Cat Movie. But even taking into account that the feline characters are anthropomorphised to the nth degree, I’ve always found there’s something strangely uncatlike about their movement and behaviour, as though the animators studied the movements of cartoon cats rather than real ones. For example, the prowling of Thomas O’Malley (full name: Abraham De Lacey Giuseppe Casey Thomas O’Malley) reminds me more of Shere Khan the tiger or Bagheera the panther from The Jungle Book than of any real cats I’ve ever known.
However, that doesn’t stop me fancying Thomas O’Malley something rotten. This may have something to do with Phil Harris‘s voice, but then again, I never fancied Baloo the bear in The Jungle Book, also voiced by him, so maybe it’s just O’Malley’s rootless, slightly reprehensible character and street credibility.
Other animated animals to which I have felt physically attracted include Darwin the guinea-pig in G-Force (voiced by Sam Rockwell), Delgado the German Shepherd in Beverly Hill Chihuahua (voiced by Andy Garcia) and the semi-suilline protagonist of Porco Rosso, variously voiced by Shûichirô Moriyama, Michael Keaton and Jean Reno. (I’m not fussy – I’ll take him in any of the dubs.)
This video for the song La métamorphose de Monsieur Chat by the French rock band Dionysos re-edits some of the visuals from Les Aristochats (as the film is known in France) to charming effect.
Warning: there’s a seven-letter English profanity repeated several times in the (otherwise mainly French) lyrics, so don’t listen if you’re easily offended.