• Fleischer were responsible for some brilliant cartoons, some of them still among my favourites. Their visual style was often stunning and some of the most imaginative and ahead of its time in animation.

    The character of Betty Boop, one of their most famous and prolific characters, may not be for all tastes and sadly not as popular now, but her sex appeal was quite daring for the time and to me there is an adorable sensual charm about her. That charm, sensuality and adorable factor is not lost anywhere here, nor her comic timing, and her role as a mermaid is handled beautifully without dulling down her personality.

    For me, 'Time on My Hands' is among the better Fleischer/Betty Boop animation-mixed-with-live-action efforts. Not one of Betty or Fleischer's overall best by any stretch, but it is more imaginative and interesting than most of their cartoons featuring live-action and real life performers. As far as those with Ethel Merman goes, 'Time on My Hands' is a better cartoon than the still pleasant but not great 'Let Me Call You Sweetheart'.

    Admittedly, the story is flimsy, barely existent even, and anybody looking for non-stop hilarity are best looking elsewhere. The title song is pleasant enough, but not an especially memorable one. Wouldn't have said no to more animation perhaps as well but that's probably just me.

    However, the animation is outstanding, everything is beautifully and meticulously drawn and the whole cartoon is rich in visual detail and imagination. Every bit as good is the music score, which delivers on the energy, lusciousness and infectiousness, great for putting anybody in a good mood.

    On top of these, 'Time on My Hands' is amusing and charming with a delightful Betty, a creatively rendered underwater world and a surrealism that's both wonderfully strange and transfixing. A big interest point too is Ethel Merman sounding a dream and with an incredibly vibrant presence in nicely shot live action.

    All in all, very nicely done and well worth the time. 8/10 Bethany Cox