[[caption-width-right:262:"Is the richest man in all the world to starve to death?!"]]
->''"Give me gold, not advice!"''
'''''The Golden Touch''''' is a [[TheGoldenAgeOfAnimation 1935]] SillySymphonies short directed by WaltDisney, and was the last cartoon he ever directed, for reasons explained below.
The plot is similar to the original King Midas fable, albeit updating it from AncientGreece to the times of [[TheMiddleAges Medieval Europe]], obviously to keep in vogue with the fairy tale settings of the Silly Symphonies. The short begins with King Midas bragging and singing about his vast riches, which prompts a smug little elf called Goldie to appear and give him the Golden Touch, albeit with warnings that Midas ignores. Initially, Midas is thrilled at his newfound gift, but quickly discovers its side effects when he discovers that it turns whatever he eats or drinks into gold, prompting a VillainousBreakdown and him surrendering his power, kingdom and riches for something to eat.
The short is notable if just for the scorn it received from Walt himself. Apparently, during the making of ''[[Disney/SnowWhiteAndTheSevenDwarfs Snow White]]'', Walt realized that it had been years since he had last directed a short cartoon, and decided to try it again with this cartoon to see whether he was good enough to direct ''[[Disney/SnowWhiteAndTheSevenDwarfs Snow White]]'' himself, working on the project in secrecy with only two animators, Fred Moore and Norm Ferguson. Unfortunately, upon release, "The Golden Touch" was an immediate flop. Reasons included that the short was stiff and lethargically paced, and that Midas came off as too one-dimensional and too unsympathetic for audiences to care about him. As such, Walt immediately [[CreatorBacklash disowned the cartoon]] and forbade anybody from ever bringing it up around the studio. This failure was also so hard on him that he gave up directing cartoons altogether, stepping aside to become a full-time producer.
* AdiposeRex: King Midas.
* AnachronismStew: Hamburgers were not invented until the 19th or 20th century, well after Midas' time.
* AndIMustScream: It's implied that the cat was fully aware when he was turned into gold.
* AntiVillain: King Midas. He's extremely greedy, arrogant and rude, but otherwise doesn't do anything actively evil or harmful (barring willingly turning his cat into gold), and once the detrimental effects of the Golden Touch come to bite him in the rear, prompting him to surrender his kingdom and riches, he finally comes around humbled by the ending.
* BittersweetEnding: Midas gives up his whole kingdom and riches to Goldie, all just so that he can have a hamburger to eat. Fortunately, he gets just that -- with onions, to his delight.
* BlessedWithSuck: Midas, when he realizes that the Golden Touch will turn ''anything'' he tries to eat or drink into gold. The cartoon even provides the page image.
* TheGrimReaper: A ''golden'' version of him appears during Midas' breakdown.
* IronicEcho: "Give me gold, not advice!" When Goldie reappears, he reminds Midas of his own words.
* KarmicTrickster: Goldie.
* LighterAndSofter: This adaptation removes the tragic story element of Midas accidentally turning his daughter into gold in favor of him just breaking down from not being able to eat anything (which unintentionally makes him less sympathetic). The story tone is also slightly more comedic than the original fable.
* NakedPeopleAreFunny: Subverted when Goldie starts to take Midas' underclothes, but relents when the king begs to keep them.
* OurElvesAreBetter: This one can give you the Golden Touch.
* PlotHole: Appears so, but it's actually not. The Golden Touch seems kind of random, but it's actually just absurdly specific:
** The tips of Midas' index fingers and the front of his face (including the inside of his mouth) turn things into gold -- and '''only''' those body parts.
** An object turned into gold also affects anything softer that is touching it. For example, Midas' cat turns to gold when it's on a tree that Midas touches, but changing water in a birdbath doesn't affect the birdbath itself. Gasses are generally exempt.
** Midas touches his own body and clothes without turning either into gold. The sole exception is when he deliberately transforms one of his teeth. Presumably he is protected from unintentionally altering his self.
* SmugSnake: Goldie, of the non villainous variety, as he takes clear pleasure in humiliating a greedy egotist like Midas.
* (Anti-)VillainousBreakdown: Midas when he realizes he can't eat anything.
* (Anti-)VillainSong: The opening song, as well as the little ditty Midas sings when he discovers the power of the Golden Touch.
* WizardNeedsFoodBadly: What really triggers Midas' breakdown is that ''everything'' he touches, even food he tries to eat or drink, turns into gold. It even turns to gold if he bypasses touching it with his hand and tries to chomp on it!