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Category:    Home > Reviews > Animation > Comedy > Fantasy > Surrealism > Feature Film > CGI > TV > Toys > The Phantom Toolbooth (1969/MGM/Warner Archive DVD)/Strawberry Shortcake: Fun Under The Sun (2014/Fox DVD)

The Phantom Toolbooth (1969/MGM/Warner Archive DVD)/Strawberry Shortcake: Fun Under The Sun (2014/Fox DVD)

Picture: C+ Sound: C/C+ Extras: D/C- Main Programs: C+

PLEASE NOTE: The Phantom Toolbooth DVD is now only available from Warner Bros. through their Warner Archive series and can be ordered from the link below.

Here's a few more children's titles...

Chuck Jones and Abe Levitow co-directed The Phantom Toolbooth (1969) while Jones was enjoying his tenure at MGM. An animated feature bookended by live action footage has a young Butch Patrick (The Munsters, Lidsville) as a young man who suddenly finds a strange box in his house that turns into a toolbooth. A mini-car even shows up and he is asked if h wants to go through or not. When he does, he becomes animated. Choosing to take the trip, he lands up in a Dr. Seuss-like world of absurdity where each character knows something about math, science or knowledge.

It is not a great work, but a smart ambitious one that deserves rediscovery and though Jones repeats himself a little bit, there are still enough nice moments throughout that young children should all be able to see this one once. June Foray, Mel Blanc, Daws Butler, Cliff Norton and Hans Conreid are among the great voice actors here.

There are sadly no extras.

Strawberry Shortcake: Fun Under The Sun (2014) is a simple, short and child-safe enough CGI installment of the new generation of the title character in action, but sadly lasts only 66 minutes, so this is a rather basic single. Still, it is at least a place to start for newcomers or one big fans will want to see and hear. Extras include Digital HD Ultraviolet Copy for PC, PC portable and iTunes capable devices, DVD-ROM printable Coloring Pages and a Music Video.

Hope they do better next time.

The anamorphically enhanced 1.85 X 1 image on Phantom and anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on Sun are about even, though Phantom has a slight color range edge in part because it was remastered for this release. The lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono in Phantom is a little weaker than I would have liked and could use a lossless upgrade, so the lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo on Sun is just a little better.

To order The Phantom Toolbooth Warner Archive DVD, go to this link for it and many more great web-exclusive releases at:


- Nicholas Sheffo


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