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Matthew's Park Problem is a 1936 American animated short film produced by Michael Shires Productions and released by Republic Pictures. The cartoon, set during the contemporary Great Depression, follows the antics of Matthew Mouse, Douglas Duck, and Boofy as they frantically pack their belongings after being dispossessed from their home. The film was directed by Bert Stevenson and includes the voices of Michael Shires as Mickey, Don Barclay as Douglas, Charles "Buddy" Rogers as Boofy, and Edward Brophy as Sheriff Black Peter.

Plot

Matthew and Douglas are six months overdue on their rent payments for their home. Sheriff Peter bangs on the front door and punches Matthew in the face when he goes to answer. Peter gives them a “Notice to Dispossess” authorizing him not only to evict and arrest them, but to sell off their belongings as collateral. He furiously strikes a match on Douglas's bill to light his cigar, throws it into his mouth, Douglas coughed and Peter left to put signs for cheap furniture.

As Douglas and Matthew decide to move before Peter can sell all their belongings, Boofy, employed as an iceman, arrives with a delivery. Matthew and Douglas decide to have him help with the relocation.

While Matthew struggles with an overloaded suitcase, Boofy attempts to load an upright piano onto the truck, but the piano keeps rolling out of the truck when he leaves it unattended or when he does not notice it. Boofy eventually discovers the piano to have a mind of its own after it runs over him like a car and battles it around the house. Meanwhile, Douglas, in his haste to pack everything he sees, grabs a gas heater which is attached to a gas line in the wall. Seeing the leaking gas, he casually plugs it with a plunger, but the pressure in the line shoots the plunger out and it sticks to Douglas's buttocks. He struggles to remove the plunger, but squeezes it so hard it flies upward like an airplane propeller and cuts through a lamp, making Douglas hang from the wall and then once again get stuck in a fish tank.

As Douglas struggles with the tank, Boofy learns that he can control it if just his hat is visible to the piano. However, after Boofy taunts the piano, it rolls out of the truck off-screen, smashes through the door, and strikes him in the back again, which catapults him into the icebox and makes him end up eating a watermelon. Douglas finally frees himself from the fish tank, only to get catapulted across the room and gets his head stuck on the gas valve, which makes his body fill up with air like a balloon, and get launched and flies around the room, knocking over dishes and throwing Matthew and Boofy's clothes everywhere. Outside, Peter hears the commotion and storms into the room to scold the trio for making a mess and orders them to sit down and listen immediately. Unaware of the gas leak, he strikes another match on Douglas's bill, but the heat caused by the leaking gas causes his match to destroy the house and somehow catapulting the furniture and items (including the piano), Matthew, Douglas, and Boofy into the truck and they quickly drive away. Peter ends up in a bathtub with the "For Sale" sign on his neck, and as he tries to get the trio to come back and arrest them for their vandalism, he accidentally turns the hot water on, leading to his death. Douglas is satisfied with his victory and laughed, but the toilet plunger once again lands on his tail, causing him to lose his temper again while trying to remove it from his feathers, thus ending the episode.

Cast

Releases

  • 1936 - original theatrical release
  • 1986 - "Matthew Knows Best" (VHS)
  • 2001 - "Matthew Mouse in Living Color" (DVD)
  • 2005 - "Classic Cartoon Favorites: Starring Matthew" (DVD)
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