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Even though I was ony six years old when I saw this film I was so touched by it that I remember it to this day. I hope that a cleaned up version will be available on DVD soon.
I remember watching this fim and my sisters and I would just cry and cry. Especially the part where skinny helps fatty climb the pole. The cCBS Childrens Film festival was what led to my love of great independant films.
My wife and I were talking about this film just last night and I decided to "google" it and see what we came up with. That's how I found this forum
I was probably about 8-9 when this was shown, and it has stuck with me all these years (I'm 45). The scene at the end where one of the boys runs back to say goodbye at the end still tears me up.
What brought it up was that we were talking about out own children's struggle with acceptance and their interaction with various friends.
There is some small warmth in knowing this film affected others like it did me and that it is still a topic of discussion. I did find this available on VHS, but am almost afraid to order in the fear that the seeing it now would somehow not be as good as my memory.
This film must have left an impression on countless children. David Sedaris writes about Fatty and Skinny in "The Youth in Asia" I had forgotten the film until I read "Me Talk Pretty One Day' and read the essay
That's right! But, as with many of us, he remembers the film incorrectly. The scene where he yells, "Komatsu!" actually occurs at the end, and he's thanking him, not apologizing.
Here's the section, with edits:
Neil was old when she moved to Chicago, and then she got older...I took her for a second opinion. Vet number two tested her blood and phoned me a few days later suggesting I consider euthanasia.
I hadn't heard that word since childhood, and immediately recalled a mismatched pair of Japanese schoolboys standing alone in a deserted schoolyard. One of the boys, grossly obese, was attempting to climb the flagpole that towered high above him. Silhouetted against the darkening sky, he hoisted himself a few feet off the ground and clung there, trembling and out of breath. "I can't do it," he said. "This is too hard for me."
His friend, a gaunt and serious boy named Komatsu, stood below him, offering encouragement. "Oh, but you can do it. You must," he said. "It is required."
This was a scene I had long forgotten, and thinking of it made me unbearably sad. The boys were characters from Fatty and Skinny, a Japanese movie regularly presented on The CBS Children's Film Festival, a weekly TV series hosted by two puppets and a very patient woman who pretended to laugh at their jokes. My sisters and I watched the program every Saturday afternoon, our gasbag of a collie imposing frequent intermissions.
Having shimmied a few more inches up the pole, Fatty lost his grip and fell down. As he brushed himself off, Skinny ran down the mountain toward the fragile, papery house he shared with his family. This had been Fatty's last chance to prove himself. He'd thought his friend's patience was unlimited, but now he knew that he was, wrong. "Komatsuuuuuuuu!" he yelled. "Komatsu, please give me one more chance."
The doctor's voice called me back from the Japanese schoolyard. "So. The euthanasia," he said. "Are you giving it some thought?"
"Yes," I said. "As a matter of fact, I am."
In the end, I returned to the animal hospital and had her put to sleep. When the vet injected the sodium pentobarbital, Neil fluttered her eyes, assumed a nap position, and died. My then-boyfriend stayed to make arrangements, and I ran outside to blubber beside the parked and, unfortunately, locked car. Neil had gotten into the car believing she would live to experience the return trip, and that tore me up. Someone had finally been naive enough to trust me, and I'd rewarded her with death. Racked by guilt, the Youth in Asia sat at their desks and wept bitter tears.
I always thought it was Fatty and Skinny
I have thought about this film for many years. I saw it once when I was very young. It meant so much to me to see Asians on film. I am Amer/Asian. My mother is Korean, my father American. For years the only Asian I ever saw was my mother. This was the first film I ever saw with persons who looked like my mother. I have spent all my life in the United States (for which I am very grateful) but always wanted to know what it might be like in Korea. The story is set in Japan but it mattered little to me. My mother told me of stories that she played while in school and they were the same as portrayed in this film. I'm glad I found this site and have ordered the film. I am very grateful that such a film was made, it has had a lasting effect on me.
Has anyone out there ordered the version of Skinny and Fatty that is available through this website ( VHS only )? I'm just wondering about the quality.
Whenever I saw that this movie was going to be on, I would always watch it. It was one of my favorites. I have not seen it for more than 35 years, but I can still hear the boy yelling " Komatsu ! " at the end of the movie........like I saw it yesterday.
I saw this when I was four years old, and I still remember it. This is remarkable, especially now that I have a four-year-old child. I'll be careful what he watches.
I grew up in West Kentucky, in a small town that was quite removed from the larger world. The CCFF was a bolt from the blue - that there were these wildly different places where people looked and lived differently, and yet they had the same little problems and joys as I. As a small child, I got a concrete sense of the brotherhood of man from this series. This sounds mauldlin, but it's true and I don't know how else to put it. The CCFF worldview was quite a departure from the Cold War view that people elsewhere were a different species altogether.
The CCFF movies ignited a curiousity in me that would stick for years. I always wanted to go out and see the larger world as a result. Later I would go to college in California then join the Peace Corps. I have to say that this little series that ran across the grain of the times changed my life in some way, maybe a large way.
Growing up in Hawaii obviously exposed me to a variety of different cultures and I feel blessed to have seen Skinny & Fatty - no less in original Japanese with english subtitles (my preference on foreign language movies).
This is a pearl of a movie that I remember with fondness if not with total clarity. It's more a warm feeling I get whenever I do think back to my elementary school days and watching this movie with my classmates...it was just one of the many reasons why Hawaii was a beautiful place to be raised.
I laughed at Janet's note, above, as these are my sentiments exactly. The CCFF was a prime instigator of my love of independent film, perhaps THE primary inspiration. And I, too, remember "crying & crying" whenever my siblings and I saw this film - though we deliberately saw it repeatedly - and referred to it in childhood, often!
In fact, my only precise memory of the film is the scene of Skinny trying to help Fatty up the pole. But I've continued to hold the belief the entire movie had great substance or this scene would not have been so wrenching nor so deeply imbedded in memory. I remember, too, my mother using the film as another lesson to not speak ill nor to think superficially of others: Not small nor unimportant lessons, in the least!
I also have another vague memory of a captivating children's film, theatrically released in theaters, mid-late 60's, that eludes me. Perhaps titled "Candy Island"? It involved three animals, including at least one dog (perhaps named Candy) - who were trying to "escape". (Not "The Incredible Journey")...One scene showed a dog exiting a small tunnel by sliding down a ramp - reminiscent of a luggage shute. -Like S&F and the pole-climbing, that's all I remember. But that movie, too, greatly affected us as children - and may have shaped our adulthoods!
i recently found a copy of skinny and fatty at a garage sale
pleasecould someone please tell me if could find skinny and fatty on dvd or any of the films in this series,,,,thank you
It's been available on VHS for awhile.
Go to my main CCFF page (click on the logo at the top of this page), and scroll down to "Skinny & Fatty" for ordering information.
Like Brent, I'm 45 and still have fond memories of Skinny and Fatty. It really touched me as did a lot of the CBS Children's Film Festival offerings. I didn't make the connection until recently, but I think it was responsible for my love of film and travel.
I also was deeply moved by this film and although I have not seen it for mabey 35+ years , I can remember parts of it .... I believe I learned enough to develope a high sense of empathy I carry to this day
I remember sitting alone on a wooden floor, watching a 12inch black and white, and being totally captivated by "Skinny & Fatty"..It was the early seventies, and to this day I have not been able to forget that movie! As an elementary school teacher I belive our children would benefit if this movie and all the other movies from the CBS Children's Film Festival...How can we make this happen?
Ditto much of what others have said. Skinny & Fatty was only seen once by me but left memories that lasted a lifetime. I was in ten schools by high school so never made friends easily. Then, was able to stay thru all of high school in one beautiful location in Northern California that had great people and are still my best friends to this day, though I am now 45 years old.
It was wonderful growing up and watching these great children's films, such as, Skinny and Fatty. I'll never forget my brother and sisters, all of us bunched up around the television. We enjoyed it so much. I appreciated, how the writers projected such good friendship between two buddies. I would love to have this classic on dvd.
I am so glad I found this website. My sister and I still talk about the CCFF and loved the "Skinny & Fatty" episode. We both were pleasantly plump for our age and were teased at school. We carried that into our adulthood and have kept extra weight on over the years. Being able to reminisce about this special time in our lives makes all the difference. We were also very young at the time, both in our mid 40's now. I find it amazing the things we remember at times. She and I find comfort knowing these films still exist. When and where can we order from?
Thank you so much for keeping our childhood alive in our adult life. Bless you!
Check the many posts in this forum or just use the link on the main CCFF page.
Now that it is 2009, is there still any way to buy copies of the movie Skinny and Fatty. The site that did have it, doesn't seem to exist anymore?
Any ideas, Thanks, Joy