An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)

G   |    |  Animation, Adventure, Family

An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991) Poster

A family of Emigre mice decide to move out to the west, unaware that they are falling into a trap perpetrated by a smooth talking cat.

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  • An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
  • An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
  • An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
  • John Cleese and Phillip Glasser in An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
  • An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
  • Phillip Glasser in An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)

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Cast & Crew

Top Billed Cast


Phil Nibbelink , Simon Wells


Flint Dille (screenplay), Charles Swenson (story), David Kirschner (creator)

Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews

19 July 2004 | rapt0r_claw-1
A worthy sequel to a great classic
Fievel, the cute little mouse from An American Tail, is going west for Fievel Goes West. This is one of very few sequels that really deserve the title of the original classics. Fievel Goes West may not have as many touching moments as the original, but that's because it's more of a fast-paced western comedy rather than a heartwarming, sometimes tragic tale (tail?) as An American Tail was.

A by-product of the comedic approach is the look of the movie. Instead of the dark, dull, forbidding color scheme of the first movie, the sequel is supposed to be bright, funny, and altogether welcoming. Thus, you get bright sunshine (sometimes a bit too bright from the characters' point of view) and varied color. The animation hasn't changed all too much, unlike The Land Before Time's sequels for video. The animation retains a bit of Don Bluth's touch, though still a bit different. Altogether, the animation is just about as good as it could be in 1991.

The film as a whole is a gem, but the one thing truly, wonderfully beautiful thing about Fievel Goes West is James Horner's immortal soundtrack. The songs are just as good as An American Tail, which is saying a lot; besides, you have a brutally edited reprise of "Somewhere Out There" from the first film, sung by Tanya. Speaking of Tanya, she's voiced by someone different, presumably to allow for her great singing. For proof, all you need to do is listen to "Dreams To Dream". Great though the aspiring singer is, the end credits rendition of the song by the crazy Lindstradt lady is beautiful.

In Fievel Goes West, our title protagonist is lost on the way to Green River, where he will supposedly find a new lease on life with his family and lots of other hopeful mice. But the dream is shattered when Fievel explores the train, and finds a bunch of cats and a huge spider, led by the smooth talking Cat R. Waul, plotting to befriend the mice before turning them into mouse-burgers by means of a mysterious "better mousetrap"! But Fievel is found out, and the spider knocks him off the train, leaving him hopelessly lost in the desert. I thought they might have made up something different, not the whole mouse-gets-lost-must-return-to-family routine. I couldn't help feeling they'd done that before. However, Dom DeLuise returns for a bigger part alongside the legendary canine sheriff Wylie Burp.

So, overall, what of this sequel? Well, it certainly does the original justice. Yes, it does lack the heart of the original, but having less heart than An American Tail does in no way mean being heartless. Don Bluth might not have had a hand in this, but Fievel Goes West lives up to Bluth's classic story of a little mouse called Fievel.

Animation-9/10; Story-7/10; Plot-7/10; Comedy-8.5/10 = Overall-8/10

Critic Reviews

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Did You Know?


Don Bluth and his animation studio, Sullivan Bluth Studios, were originally going to make the film, as they had done with An American Tail (1986). Universal agreed, under the condition that it would cost no more than $9.6 million, similar to the budget of the first film, but $3 million less than The Land Before Time (1988), which Bluth was already directing for them. Faced with the prospect of having to lay off employees at his studio, Bluth declined the job, and parted ways with Universal after finishing their commitment with An American Tail (1986). Ironically, the film was made for roughly $25 million, twice as much as "Land" had cost to make.


Fievel: And then, the hero Wylie Burp, squinted across the dusty street. Hopelessly, surrounded by the Cactus Cat gang, he stood his ground, refusing to back down.


When Fievel says "Let's go on that ride again!" after the can goes down the last waterfall, his voice is sped up.

Crazy Credits

Instead of showing the traditional Amblin logo (the one of Elliot going on the bicycle and flying up to the moon) the logo says, "Amblimation" and Fievel is pushing it, then he stands next to it and his hat falls down over his eyes.

Alternate Versions

The televised version of this film when shown on Universal Kids cuts out the scene of Fievel taking down (shooting) the Cactus Cat Gang. Therefore, the scene starts from Fievel's voice over and saying to Wylie Burp "Have no fear! Philly the Kid is here!", and when he starts to shoot, it goes straight to the bullet turning into the cap of Fievel's cap gun and Mama calling him for supper.


I'll Take You Home Again Kathleen
Written by
Thomas Payne Westendorf
(played on the piano at the saloon)


Plot Summary

Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Animation | Adventure | Family | Musical | Western

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