The adjective in the title Bad Bugs Bunny, a program of golden-age Warner Bros. cartoons playing at Chandler Cinemas, bears clarification. Purely on the level of cinematic craft, these shorts arent remotely bad. They display the same brilliant wit, peerless comic timing, visual imagination, graphic ingenuity, and musical accomplishment as any of the other Looney Tunes or Merrie Melodies. Theyre bad only in the sense that theyre joltingly un-P.C.
Presented in 16mm by film historian/archivist Dennis Nyback, the program includes selections like Freddy the Freshman (1932), which includes gratuitous Jewish and gay caricatures, and 1941s All This and Rabbit Stew and the Dali-esque Tin Pan Alley Cats (1943), both which feature black stereotypes. Anti-Japanese propaganda is on parade in Tokio Jokio (1943) and Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips (1944). Then theres Ali Baba Bound, a 1940 Porky Pig adventure full of evil Arabs -- including a suicide bomber!
Sat., May 23, 5, 7 & 9 p.m., 2009