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Race for Your Life, Charlie Brown

Promotional poster for Race for Your Life, Charlie Brown
Directed by Bill Melendez
Phil Roman
Produced by Bill Melendez
Lee Mendelson
Written by Charles M. Schulz
Music by Ed Bogas
Editing by Roger Donley
Chuck McCann
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release date(s) 24 August 1977
Running time 76 min.
Country USA
Language English
Preceded by Snoopy Come Home
Followed by Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (and Don't Come Back!!)

Race For Your Life, Charlie Brown is a 1977 animated film produced by United Feature Syndicate for Paramount Pictures, directed by Bill Meléndez, and the third in a series of movies based on the Peanuts comic strip. It was the first Peanuts feature-length film produced after the death of composer Vince Guaraldi.

Contents

Plot

The Peanuts gang head off to Camp Remote in the Rocky Mountains, where they ultimately compete in a river rafting race on the Rogue River; Charlie Brown, true to form, is accidentally left behind by the bus while at a desolate rest stop in Gorman, California. He is then forced to hitch a harrowing ride on Snoopy's Harley-Davidson motorcycle in order to make the rest of the journey to the camp, accompanied by rock guitar type riffs of "Born to be Wild" while Charlie Brown is shouting in fear at Snoopy's wild driving.

Upon their arrival, the kids are immediately exposed to the regimentation and squalor of camp life which is a stark contrast to their comfortable residences back home in Saint Paul. The children are unfamiliar with the concept that the camp schedule is in military time. Although the kids do their best to adjust to the rigors of camp life, Snoopy, in a tent of his own, enjoys a banana split while watching Sergio Leone's A Fistful of Dollars on his portable General Electric TV set.

The gang must contend with a trio of ruthless bullies (and their feral tabby cat, Brutus, vicious enough to intimidate even Snoopy) who openly boast of their having won the race every year they have competed. The only thing that keeps the bullies at bay is Linus using his security blanket like a whip (which also gets him unwanted attention from Sally due to her praising the courage of her "Sweet Babboo"). It is revealed that their success has always been through outright cheating, using a raft equipped with an outboard motor, direction finder, radar and sonar, and even resorting to every trick they could think of to hamper or destroy everyone else's chance to even make it to the finish line, much less win the race.

The kids are broken into three groups: the boys' group (consisting of Charlie Brown, Linus, Schroeder, and Franklin), the girls' group (led by Peppermint Patty who appoints herself the leader, Marcie, Lucy, and Sally), and Snoopy and Woodstock. Charlie Brown is the very reluctant leader of the boys' group, well-meaning but struggling with his insecurities. His foil is Patty, the leader of the girls' group, who is very confident despite her incompetence as a leader (much of it due to her insistence on every decision, no matter how minor, being confirmed by a group vote).

The groups run into different obstacles: getting lost, stranded, storms, blizzards, and sabotage from the bullies. Snoopy abandons the race to search tirelessly for Woodstock when a storm separates them; after a long search, they manage to find each other and are joyfully reunited. Charlie Brown starts to grow more into his leadership role, becoming leader of both the boys' and girls' groups when the bullies destroy both of their rafts, forcing them to work together.

Thanks to Charlie Brown's growing self-confidence and leadership, the gang is about to win the race at the climax after overcoming considerable odds. Unfortunately, Patty incites the girls to celebrate too soon and they accidentally knock the boys overboard in their excitement; when they attempt to rescue them, the bullies seize the opportunity to knock the entire group out of the race for good.

The bullies gloat their incoming victory only for their craft to sink right before the finish line, leaving Snoopy and Woodstock the only contenders left. Brutus sinks Snoopy's inner tube with a claw, but Woodstock promptly builds a raft of twigs and continues toward victory. When Brutus tries to attack Woodstock, Snoopy decks him, and Woodstock wins the race. Conceding defeat, the bullies begin to vow vengeance next year, but their threats are humiliatingly cut short when Snoopy hands Brutus a rough beating after he threatens Woodstock again.

As the gang board the bus to depart for home, Charlie Brown decides aloud to use the experience as a lesson to be more confident and assertive, and to believe in himself. Unfortunately, right after he finishes speaking, the bus leaves without Charlie Brown for the second time, and as before, he is forced to hitch a ride with Snoopy.

Voice cast

  • Cam Clarke - Snoopy
  • Loretta Long - Woodstock
  • Duncan Watson - Charlie Brown
  • Kirk Jue - Bully
  • Greg Felton - Schroeder/Camp Announcer
  • Jordan Warren - Bully
  • Stuart Brotman - Peppermint Patty
  • Jimmy Ahrens - Marcie
  • Gail Davis - Sally Brown
  • Melanie Kohn - Lucy van Pelt
  • Liam Martin - Linus van Pelt
  • Tom Muller - Franklin/Bully
  • Jackson Beck - Evil Cat
  • Bill Meléndez - Snoopy & Woodstock

Similar Peanuts Specials and Books

Specials

Specials that have a similar summer camp setting as this movie:

Also, The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show episode "Camp" from "Lucy Loves Schroeder" has a similar summer camp setting.

Books

  • It's Off to Camp, Charlie Brown[1]
  • The Many Faces of Snoopy ~ Beagle Scout[2]

Home release

The film was released on VHS and was the first release on RCA's defunct Capacitance Electronic Disc Capacitance Electronic Disc#Milestones. No plans for a DVD release.

References

  1. ^ http://www.amazon.com/Its-Off-Camp-Charlie-Brown/dp/0345479874/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1227478522&sr=8-
  2. ^ http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0345479831/ref=s9sdps_c1_14_img2-rfc_p-3237_p_si1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-3&pf_rd_r=107HYC9971PRTTJ6BFYR&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=463383391&pf_rd_i=507846

External links








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