On the day before the monsoon (otherwise known as windsday), I prepared myself for the coming squalls by stocking up on DVDs of classic Disney shorts at my local library. Libraries are an amazing resource for movies that may be a little bit outside the mainstream, and I love venturing into the video section to scout out obscure Disney films. On this trip, I was in pursuit of Depression- and WWII-era shorts ( à la Melody Time or Silly Symphonies)- boy, did I hit the motherlode! I came home with my arms full and a smile on my face, ready to dig into my new treasures. Imagine my delight when I realized that one of the DVDs featured The Reluctant Dragon- a.k.a my favorite short of all time!
For those of you who haven't seen it... you MUST. Originally a short segment in the 1941 live-action movie of same name, The Reluctant Dragon follows a young boy as he befriends an unlikely knight and a dragon who'd rather recite poetry than ravage the countryside (you can watch the short on youtube here). It's charming, clever, and deserves SO much more attention than it gets. I find some new little detail to love with every viewing, but the one aspect I will always adore is the title character: the Dragon! Of course, if this post included everything that makes that"reluctant" reptile as amazing as he is, it'd be as long as
1) He appreciates the finer things...
... meaning: he frequently enjoys picnics furnished with a smorgasbord of tasty treats (jam sandwiches? Chocolate cake? I am so there.), then praises his feast in delightful verse- he even moves himself to tears with his masterful lament "To a Pineapple Upside-Down Cake". Also worth mentioning is the Dragon's exquisite grace, best observed above in a dainty balletic display, coupled with another pleasant poem (this one entitled "Just a-Drifting"). Pair all that with his affinity for accompanying songbirds on the flute and you've got one rather refined reptile!
2) He has a healthy sense of self-respect.
Beyond being highly cultured, the Dragon knows how he likes things and sees to it that they go that way!
3) He keeps it positive.
... However, in the case that he must (SPOILER ALERT... supposing that a fifteen minute short is spoil-able) fight, he confronts it with optimism and, dare I say it, a little bit of joy. I mean, look at that face:
"I'm mad! I'm mad!"
That is a face that knows how to make the best of a bad situation (and really, couldn't we all stand to brush up in that area?).4) He knows the appropriate occasion for a nice cuppa. (Hint: Anytime, anywhere.)
Because, after all, nothing goes better with a battle than a proper brew!
5) He is just plain classy.
'Nuff said.In summation: The Reluctant Dragon is amazing. Go watch it. Now. I mean it.
What are your favorite classics? I'd love to hear in the comments below!
Love and pixie dust,