The Blue Bird (1940)

The Blue Bird DVD

Twentieth Century Fox
 Shirley Temple, Johnny Russell, Gale Sondergaard, Eddie Collins
Directed by: Walter Lang

Synopsis: The fanciful tale of a selfish, ungrateful girl named Mytyl (Shirley Temple) who complains about being poor when in fact that she has her health, a home, food and a loving family, is sent on a quest with her little brother Tyltyl (Johnny Russell) by Fairy Berylune (Jessie Ralph) to find the bluebird of happiness.  The fairy provides them with companions in the human form of their dog Tylo (Eddie Collins), their cat Tylette (Gale Sondergaard) and Light, a beautiful woman transformed from a lantern (Helen Ericson.)

Featured Feline: We have a joke term for movies which paint cats in a bad light while making dogs out to look good, and that is “dog propaganda.”  This film is a good example of this with Tylo, the bulldog, being loyal and true to the children, which is fair enough, but Tylette the black and white long-haired cat is scheming, conniving and out to thwart everyone’s plans from the very beginning.  This movie definitely does not give cats a good name.  But we have to admit that Gale Sondergaard does a wonderful job of playing the wickedly self-centered Tylette in human form.

The Blue Bird

Final Mewsings: If you were a cat turned into a human, you’d be disagreeable, too.

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