Review: Wallace & Gromit: The Wrong Trousers (1993)


Director: Nick Park | 30 minutes | animation, comedy, family, short film | Original voice cast: Peter Sallis

It’s been six years after Wallace and Gromit’s debut, and this time they’re staying on Earth. It is Gromit’s birthday and his disappointment in his owner that he has not thought of this is superbly portrayed. You really sympathize with him! Fortunately for Gromit, Wallace has not forgotten him, but whether Gromit is so happy with his present remains to be seen. In addition to a collar, he gets a pair of ex-NASA Technotrousers, “perfect for walkies”. Not exactly the ideal gift for a dog, but that again typifies Wallace, silly and tactless.

Meanwhile, it is also clear that the bad economy is also casting its shadow on the household at 62 West Wallaby Street, as Wallace has decided they have to rent out a room. Soon the tenant is found in the form of a penguin, who instead of the empty room takes over Gromit’s room, plays loud music and winds Wallace around his finger. This will drive Gromit out of the house and eventually even completely off the lot. One of the most moving moments is when Gromit leaves the house after taking one last look at the photo that shows him with Wallace. Lump in your throat! With Wallace & Gromit: The Wrong Trousers, you just forget that you’re looking at chunks of clay.

For half an hour of playing time, there is an incredible amount of story and suspense in “Wallace & Gromit: The Wrong Trousers”, perhaps more than in an average James Bond movie! Even though the viewer immediately knows that the penguin is not up to much good – the long gazes and the fact that he unceremoniously squats Gromit’s room is enough to be convinced of this – it remains a mystery for a long time exactly his intention is. There is really no point of criticism of this short animation film, the Oscar that won the film for best short animation is more than deserved. Nick Park’s craftsmanship is undeniably at its peak in this film.

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