The DVD is surprisingly filled with special features from deleted scenes to chats with the cast, and even a gig with most of the acts. The features are very entertaining and also highlight how tight, how full of ideas, and how much love they have for the art that this group of performers has.
As a monkey lover (not like that you dirty boy! Lol!) I have trouble watching films about animals which don’t feature monkeys. After overcoming this initial disappointment, I sat down to watch this Walter Dizzy classic. The story is about a family who have a hundred Dalmation dogs (the ones which look like zebras) and are entering the American version of Crufts- ‘The Abe Lincoln Sponsored Stars And Stripes Canine Appreciation Gala Contest Bonanza For Dog Breeders Featuring Exciting Races, Daring Obstacles, Grooming Awards, And Stalwart Obedience Show!’ or better known as TALSSASCAGCBFDBFERDOGAASOS! The family hear about a loophole that if someone has 101 dogs of the same breed they automatically win the top prize- the Woofey, and a million one dollar bits. Their dogs are mongrels you see- stupid, ugly, and disobedient. The first part of the show is taken up with the family trying to train their dogs to sit, sleep, run, eat, dance, and sing- this leads to some wonderful hits such as ‘Spot The Wrong’un!’, ‘Who Let The Dogs Out’, ‘Barken’, ‘Oh What A Lovely Bone’ and ‘Get Off My Nice Clean Carpet You Dirty Bitch’. Realising their dogs are useless they try to exploit the loop. Most of the film is taken up by the owners and their lovely children trying to get their puppies to mate so that they reach the target of 101- this led to some questionable scenes which young audiences were not prepared for and the eventual ‘disappearances’ of many of the staff. 40 years later a mass burial site was exhumed where a number of bodies of the staff were found- some with bones inserted in the wrong spot (pardon the puns). Bette Davis spices things up a tad with her portrayal of Cruel Fella D’Evil- a local mobster who went mental when her husband was murdered by the Godfather, Don Niro De Pachinko. She hates the sound of dogs, but loves the taste, and has heard an ancient myth which speaks of ‘the flysh of the one hundred and first born pup shall give eternal life to he who shalt feast of it’. She tries to kidnap number 101 (Ploppy) and eat it, but the other dogs set traps up for her around the house, such as messes under the windows, messes on the hallways, and worst of all, messes on the door handles. I won’t spoil the ending for you, but it ends by the plot coming to and end and the credits rolling. Although this was filmed about a hundred (and one!) years ago, the graphics and camera-work are very enticing. Disney were the only studio rich enough back then to make their films in colour, which is why this looks so could compared to other rubbish like Castle Blanka. Unfortunately the unsavoury nature of the plot combined with the toilet humour, and the fact that it was basically a remake of the Nazi propaganda film ‘Eine hundert und eine Rettungen’ or 101 Salvations mean that it makes for inappropriate viewing.
Best Scene: Fred Willard’s humorous commentary throughout the various stages of the dog trials- it was one of his first appearances, at the age of 42.