Movie Review: Lady and the Tramp (1955)

TitleLady and the Tramp
Release Date: June 22, 1955
Director: Clyde Geronimi, Wilfred Jackson, and Hamilton Luske
Production Company: Walt Disney Productions

Lady is a Cocker Spaniel given as a Christmas gift from Jim Dear to his wife Darling as a puppy.  Lady grows to find a place at the center of Jim Dear and Darling’s life, but starts to be usurped when the couple have a baby.  Then when they go on a trip and leave Lady and the baby in the care of Aunt Sarah, Lady finds herself completely shooed out of the house.  On the streets, she meets the stray dog Tramp who shows her the good life of a dog with no attachments.  A terrifying rat and a thunder storm provide the drama at the climax of the movie, leading to a happily-ever-after in the conclusion.

There are a couple of dated elements that make it hard for a modern audience to fully enjoy this movie.  For one, it’s full of ethnic stereotypes, which is mildly amusing when it’s Jock, the Scottie, speaking with a Scottish accent, but less so with the Asian exoticism of the Siamese cats or the comedic fake Italian dialect at Tony’s restaurant.  The story also features a macho male in Tramp paired with a docile female in Lady that is old fashioned, and not in a good way.  That all being said, my 7 y.o., who has been reluctant to watch classic Disney movies with me, said she enjoyed this one.

Rating: ***

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