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* AccidentalAesop: A meta example. Along with ''Film/HeavensGate'', this film is a good cautionary tale of how [[DoingItForTheArt trying to make your passion project literally perfect]], with little concern for the [[RealityEnsues realistic restraints]] of time, money and even human capability, can blow up in one's face.
* AnimationBump: While the animation compiled together in the Recobbled Cut is generally of excellent quality (and we're talking [[VisualEffectsOfAwesome really, really excellent here]]) the scenes animated by Richard Williams himself, in addition to the War Machine climax (with impeccably drawn, detailed moving polygons drawn by hand in an era before CGI) noticeably feature the most fluent and three-dimensional animation in the entire film, which is impressive considering the animation quality of several scenes not animated by Williams. The scenes animated by veteran animators [[WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes Ken Harris]] and [[Franchise/DisneyAnimatedCanon Art Babbitt]] also qualify.
* AntiClimaxBoss: After being built up for most of the film as the ultimate threat to the Golden City, One-Eye is swiftly defeated ''just outside it's limits''. By a tack.
* SugarWiki/AwesomeArt: Try to remind yourself every ten minutes or so that the film was made entirely with hand-drawn animation, without a computer in sight. Because you ''will'' need to.
* BigLippedAlligatorMoment: There's a TON in the "Arabian Knight" (Miramax) cut, but one that stands out is the Thief encountering his mom in the plumbing pipes. It makes about as much sense as it sounds.
* CompleteMonster: [[BigBad Mighty One-Eye]], from the original workprint and ''The Recobbled Cut'', is a brutal warlord who introduces himself in the aftermath of a complete massacre of an army he and his army have defeated, [[AtopAMountainOfCorpses forming a mountain of hundreds of corpses]] upon which One Eye announces his intent to bring the Golden City and all within to destruction. Regularly making a habit of abusing his personal harem and using them as living furniture, One Eye spitefully orders the treacherous wizard [[EvilChancellor Zigzag]] thrown to his pet alligators [[UngratefulBastard even after Zigzag provides him with the means to invade the Golden City]]. One Eye is implied to make a regular habit out of mass slaughter and seeks to annihilate the Golden City purely as a show of his [[BloodKnight bloodthirsty might]].
* CultClassic: A veritable holy grail for animators and animation fans.
* EndingFatigue: The war machine falling apart. As one observer remarked, it "looks as if someone ''died'' from animating it," not only because of the exhaustive, incomparably amazing 3D hand-drawn animation, but for the fact that it goes on for nearly ten minutes ''after'' the villain has been defeated.
* EarWorm:
** In the Miramax and Allied Filmakers versions, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LwALtxT93_E "Beem Bom"/"We're What Happens When You Don't Finish School"]]. Say what you will about the songs, but that one is pretty damn catchy.
** "Have no fear, have no fear! Zigzag, the Grand Vizier is here!"
** "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTd2zJOdogM#t=5m30s Somehow it's so amazing!]]"
* FandomRivalry: With Disney's ''Disney/{{Aladdin}}'', which clearly borrowed a lot from this film, which was already 20+ years into production when that one was conceived. Richard Williams would regularly show footage of it to the staff of ''Film/WhoFramedRogerRabbit'', many of whom would later work on it, which didn't help. The more pessimistic fans will say that Disney outright stole Williams' ideas, while those more optimistic assume that it was a pre-emptive ShoutOut, as they had no idea if it was ever going to be completed or not.
* FanonDiscontinuity: To both fans and non-fans of Richard Williams, the Mirimax version does not exist.
** WordOfGod says that even Richard Williams HIMSELF refuses to acknowledge any version other than his workprint and the Recobbled Cut, only submitting the workprint for restoration and archiving.
* FunnyAneurysmMoment: The thief stealing the film at the end, considering what happened to the film in RealLife.
** Also, the film was finally released under the title "Princess and the Cobbler" in September 1993. A month later, Creator/VincentPrice passed away. So Zigzag's final line "For Zigzag then, this is....the end!" is oddly prophetic.
* HarsherInHindsight: It's implied in at least one version that the Thief is keeping the film until the reviews come in. The film has never been nominated any awards, and it's only the workprint that has been archived. [[FridgeBrilliance Maybe one day he might actually give it back...]]
* HypeBacklash: An increasing number of people are claiming that the film isn't quite the masterpiece its fans make it out to be, feeling that while the animation is top notch the storytelling is weak and several scenes are mainly animation for animation's sake rather than furthering the plot. (As [[http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/doc-nyc-review-persistence-of-vision-is-a-heartbreaking-account-of-a-thwarted-animated-masterpiece-20121109 this article]] puts it, Williams "had 95 minutes of footage for a 79-minute movie.")
** Williams himself later said that this contributed to the film's ultimate fate. Because he was never sure when the film was going to be finished, every publicity piece on it had him declaring that it would be finished sometime soon. The fact that it never was ultimately hurt its reputation and made him look like a liar.
* JerkassWoobie: The Thief is a smelly, selfish... well, thief, who keeps finding [[EverythingTryingToKillYou various ways to get beaten up]], first by an old lady, then a polo game, then a self destructing war machine and even a bed '''THAT COMES ALIVE FOR NO REAL REASON'''. He only gives up the golden balls by the end because he feels they aren't worth the abuse.
* MisBlamed: Calvert, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Thief_and_the_Cobbler#Production_under_Fred_Calvert_.281992-1993.29 who really liked Williams animation and tried to keep as much of the original as he could]], gets most of the flack for the shoddy animation, but the Completion Company forced him to finish ''Thief'' as cheaply as possible and had the movie outsourced ''twice''. Then again, it ''was'' his decision to add dialogue where it wasn't needed.
** Who was it that made [[spoiler:Tack tan ''in the middle of the night?'' '''The cel painters.''']] Thankfully, [[http://orangecow.org/thief/thiefmk4caps/ThiefMk4Work1-166.jpeg the error has been fixed for Recobbled Cut Mark 4.]]
** The Completion Bond Company, really. Contrary to [[RonTheDeathEater popular opinion]], they did not "steal" the film. Richard Williams signed a contract with them that said he would complete the film at a fixed date for a specific amount of money, of which he did neither.
* {{Moe}}: Tack.
* NarmCharm: For some, the Calvert and Miramax versions are these.
** Special mention for the Thief's [[DeadpanSnarker snarky]] inner monologue, which for several is the only redeeming factor of the latter cut.
* NauseaFuel: Due to the camera angels and the extremely fluid animation on the 3D objects, it can be pretty easy to watch the war machine falling apart while getting a bit of motion sickness.
* OvershadowedByControversy: By this point, the story of the film's exhaustive production, Williams' tenacity to make it perfect, and its eventual incomplete fate are far more well-known than what actually happens in it.
* {{Padding}}: A handful of scenes, such as the polo game, the war-torn soldier returning to King Nod and ''especially'' the war machine, go on several minutes longer than they probably should for no greater reason that Richard Williams wanted the already awesome-looking animation to be ''even more awesome''. [[TropesAreNotBad There hasn't been much complaint]].
* SoOkayItsAverage: While no one has yet to balk at the [[SugarWiki/AwesomeArt god-tier]] animation, the actual story isn't seen as much more than an average fairy tale.
* TastesLikeDiabetes: The "Am I Feeling Love?" sequence.
* {{Tearjerker}}: King Nod freaking out upon seeing his daughter on the battlefield.
** The history and eventual sad fate of the movie itself could be considered one, particularly in regards to its creator.
* VisualEffectsOfAwesome: '''THE WHOLE MOVIE'''. It boasts some of the most smooth, fluid, and overall painstaking hand-drawn animation ever put to film (''especially'', again, the war machine sequence). It's practically... scratch that, it's ''literally'' the only reason the film exists!
* WhatTheHellCastingAgency: [[InvokedTrope Invoked]] for the sake of comedy. The skinny, wimpy Tack delivers his sole line in the deep, suave voice of [[spoiler:Creator/SeanConnery]].
** Played much more straight in the Calvert/Miramax cut, which either completely redid voice tracks or, more infamously, gave previously nonspeaking characters lines in order to have an AllStarCast.
* WhatDoYouMeanItWasntMadeOnDrugs: The original version is probably the second trippiest animated film, after ''WesternAnimation/YellowSubmarine''. Befitting, as Richard Williams is a big fan of that movie.
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