(UK 1993 31m) DVD2
Pick up a penguin
p Christopher Moll d Nick Park w Nick Park, Bob Baker ed Helen Garrard m Julian Nott art Yvonne Fox
VOICES BY:- Peter Sallis (Wallace),
Wallace the inventor with a passion for Wensleydale cheese always reminded me of the Beano’s Calamity James without hair and, like that comic creation, he has an infinitely more street-smart pet (substitute Gromit the dog for Alexander the lemming). For any one of a number of reasons Wallace and Gromit became a national institution in the nineties, a source of endless pleasure for young and old and the source of instant fame for its modest creator with a taste for outrageous bow-ties, Nick Park. Much was made of the incredibly pain-staking animation methods used and they are certainly as close to being a polar opposite to the CGI world of Pixar as could be offered. But these films are more than mere animated shorts, they are classic comedies. Period. They belong with the best of Keaton, Chaplin and Laurel & Hardy. And though A Grand Day Out and, particularly, A Close Shave are rightly feted, for me The Wrong Trousers is Aardman’s greatest film.
The film begins with Gromit pending the rising from bed of his owner, Wallace, and anxiously awaiting his birthday presents. Eventually he is presented with a new dog collar (which he hates) and some leftover NASA space trousers to take him for walkies and leave Wallace to eat his cheese and invent his crackpot devices. At the same time, money is running a little thin and Wallace is forced to take in a lodger, in the form of a suspicious looking penguin, who proceeds to take over Gromit’s room and force the poor old dog out into the kennel and, eventually, complete with yellow raincoat and trademark knotted spotted hankie, to leave home. However, the penguin has sinister plans for Wallace, using his trousers to rob the local museum of a priceless diamond. (more…)