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Dreams of a Rarebit Fiend: The Pet1921

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  • 4.1
Winsor McCay, renowned for such comic strips as "Little Nemo in Slumberland," earlier explored dream imagery with his 1904 strip "Dream of the Rarebit Fiend" in which a character claims his horrible nightmares are caused by eating Welsh rarebit. In 1911, McCay began doing film animation, personally drawing every frame on rice paper; his most famous effort is GERTIE THE DINOSAUR. He made four films based upon his "Rarebit Fiend" series; note the amazingly complex pan across the city following the monster when the sky is filled with airplanes and a zeppelin, each freshly-drawn for every frame.

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Member Reviews (9)

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top reviewer

Winsor McCay of Nemo in Slumberland and Gertie the Dinosaur (first cartoon) fame gives us this little gem. Foreshadowing Godzilla and even King Kong "The Pet" is a disturbing tale inspired by that most influential tasty morsel the rarebit. McCay, as always, finds the most surreal aspects in his drawing perspective and his ever enlarging tale has a decided dark slant. It is hard to compare it to anything as it is seminal, you have to wonder how many filmmakers saw this before they made their own fantasy films much later. These are familiar images still used today.

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top reviewer

A treasure! Wonderful, and the children loved it too.

McCay opens the door . . .

Very good.

Looks like done on photo'd backgrounds. Interesting.

Not PETA friendly, but a cute animation for its time. Worth a watch for animation students.

Enjoyed this bittersweet gem. Also enjoyed the detailed rendering of the interiors, architecture, clothing, transportation etc.

The pet's body bears a strong resemblance to McCay's Gertie from his earlier work.

Why does Rarebit inspire strange dreams? In this short, a man dreams his wife had adopted a pet that eats and eats then grows and grows. Made by master animator Winsor McCay who created the film GERTIE THE DINOSAUR, as well as the comic strip, LITTLE NEMO IN SLUMBERLAND.