Despite the silly, saccharine and inconsequential nature of its story, Disney’s Lady and the Tramp still stands as one of the great achievements in the history of the Mouse Factory’s animated features. Even if the movie had no story it all, that wouldn’t change the fact that it is one of the most gorgeously illustrated of the Disney animated films. There isn’t a frame of this film that I wouldn’t be happy to have framed and hanging on my wall. The animation of the canine characters fluidly blends realism and anthropomorphic fantasy. The filmmakers also make superb use of the movie’s 2.55:1 CinemaScope aspect ratio, a rarity among animated films of any kind.
The film is also unique in that it was also filmed simultaneously in the 4:3 Academy ratio. However, the “Full Screen” version on the new DVD is not this version, but a pan and scan of the CinemaScope film. That doesn’t matter, since here we watch only the widescreen version if we can, but it’s still sad that one of the original versions of this classic is not available.