SUMMARY: A retelling of the classic ballad ‘Frankie and Johnny’, in which Frankie’s trial for murder plays out in a rhythmic manner.
WHY IT’S HERE: UPA’s ‘Rooty Toot Toot’ was their most stylised cartoon yet. Based on the ballad ‘Frankie and Johnny’, ‘Rooty Toot Toot’ is a courtroom drama in verse. The script is good but the animation is the clincher, filling the scenario with a unique energy that could only come from UPA. With daring character design and radical use of colour (dull greys and browns dominate, often set against themselves but also juxtaposed with vibrant reds), ‘Rooty Toot Toot’ is an astonishing masterpiece which continued to thrust UPA into the critical spotlight.