183. Brotherhood of Man – Robert Cannon

LONESOME MOUSE

SUMMARY: A man learns that the similarities between mankind outweigh the cultural differences, and that these differences should be accepted and celebrated rather than used as a reason to push us all apart.

WHY IT’S HERE: After the success of ‘Hell-Bent for Election’ the talented animators who were soon to form the legendary UPA studio were hired once more by United Auto Workers (who sponsored the previous film) to make ‘Brotherhood of Man’, another politically Liberal film that was ahead of its time in its multicultural message. This message lead to the studio being investigated by the FBI as part of the Communist Witch Hunts that forcefully tried to bully the nation into one distinctly un-Liberal mindset. But it is not just the politics of ‘Brotherhood of Man’ that mark it out as interesting. Far more than in ‘Hell-Bent for Election’, the flat, stylised simplicity that would come to define UPA productions is in evidence and this potentially risky approach works beautifully. It was the continued combination of this style and the wit that is amply on show in ‘Brotherhood of Man’ that would lead to UPA becoming one of the most critically acclaimed studios of the coming decade.

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