(a.k.a. The Little Fox
) is a Hungarian animated film from 1981, produced by Pannonia Film Studio
. It is based on a novel by Hungarian author István Fekete. The novel was also translated into German, but never in English. It is known in English through the animated adaptation. You can view the whole movie with English dub here
The story is about a young fox, whose family was killed by a human hunter, and is raised by his uncle. He learns to hunt, learns the necessary skills to survive in the forest, and gets revenge on the hunter who killed his family.
Vuk, along with Cat City
, is often considered one of the most beloved classics of Hungarian animation.
In 2008 an All-CGI Cartoon
sequel called Kis Vuk
(released in English as A Fox's Tale
) was created, in which none of the creators of the original cartoon were involved.
This book and film provide examples of:
- Adam and Eve Plot: Invoked by Karak, when he tells Vuk and Vixen that they "still have things to do. The human might've killed me, but the free foxes must not perish." Subverted in that Vuk and Vixen are far from being the last foxes in the forest.
- Anti-Hero: Vuk
- Babies Ever After: The film ends with Vuk and Vixen having their own litter.
- Bloodless Carnage: Despite all the animals killed by the foxes, and by the hunter's guns, not one drop of blood is seen. Most egregious example is when the dogs and the hunter fell into the fox traps. However they're seen in thick bandages later.
- Book Ends: The movie begins with the litter of Vuk's parents. It ends with an almost identical scene with Vuk and Vixen having their own litter. The dialogue between Vuk and Vixen also mirrors the dialogue between Vuk's parents Kag and Iny.
- Butt Monkey: Vahur (Barny in the english dub) the fox hound, to Chew Toy levels.
- Catch Phrase: Vuk is an acronym for "Vadászom. Utamból. Kotródj!" (I'm hunting. Out. Of. My way!), for which the old Vuk was named after. The Meaningful Name acronym part Lost in Translation in the english dub, where the Catch Phrase became "If I can see it, I can catch it."
- Cats Are Mean: Although the cat is a minor character, she's rather unfriendly to Vuk.
- Carnivore Confusion: One of the most brutal aversions in the history of children's cartoons: many animal characters, even those who have spoken lines, or even have their names given, are killed and eaten by the main protagonist.
- Clucking Funny: In the beginning of the movie, the rooster and the hens provide much comedy... before being killed and eaten by the protagonist's father.
- Child Prodigy: Vuk is repeatedly compaired to his grandfather, who "was the first among the foxes"
- Composite Character: The vixen in the movie is an amalgamation of Vuk's sister (whom he rescues from the hunter's cage) and his future mate from the book.
- Cunning Like a Fox: Invoked even in the theme song.
- Dead Guy Junior: Vuk is named after his grandpa.
- Disneyfication: Despite the above mentioned aversion of Carnivore Confusion, a lot of the novel's brutality is toned down in the film, and much comedy is added.
- Dogs Are Dumb: Or at least easily outsmarted by foxes.
- The Faceless: All human characters.
- Film of the Book
- Generation Xerox: Vuk to his grandpa, and one of Vuk's cubs to him.
- Heartwarming Orphan: Vuk himself. The way he cries for his parents can be a big Tear Jerker.
- Humanlike Foot Anatomy: The foxes and the dogs.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Karak in the movie, jumped out from under the brushes to distract the hunters, and save Vuk and Vixen.
- Humans Are Bastards/Humans Are Cthulhu: Oh, so much. They are always present as a faceless threat to the animals.
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Vahur and Fickó crosses over to this near the end of the movie.
- Infant Immortality: Oh, so very averted. Vuk's siblings are killed along with his parents.
- Life or Limb Decision: Sut had to bite down his tail, to escape from a fox trap.
- Lost in Translation: Many of the jokes in the Hungarian version were missed in English. Also the Catch Phrase, see above.
- Mama Bear: Íny, Vuk's mother in the novel. She permanently disfigured one of the hounds sent in their burrow.
- Never Live It Down: In-universe. Vahur and Fickó will never be able to clean themselves of the shame Vuk and Vixen put them into.
- The Obi-Wan: Vuk's uncle Karak.
- Papa Wolf: In the original novel, Kag, Vuk's father fought and killed one of the hounds the hunters sent in his burrow. It's implied in the film that there he put up a fight too, but since the same dog reappears unharmed later in the movie, it seems to have been a Curb-Stomp Battle in the dogs favor.
- Parental Substitute: Karak to Vuk.
- Prickly Porcupine: Szú is a hedgehog rather than a porcupine (since the film takes place in Europe), but has a grumpy, Deadpan Snarker personality that fits this trope.
- Ravens and Crows A very mean crow appears in the middle of the film, who swore revenge on Vuk, after he tore out three of his tail feathers.
- So Proud of You: Karak to Vuk, at one point.
- Surrounded by Idiots: Vahur again, while guarding the geese, with Fickó/Fido. The geese were drunk, and with Fickó he had the following exchange
Vahur: Two hounds on the job. Dog No.1. -that's me- guards the goose on the right. Dog No.2...
Fickó: Who's that?
Vahur: My goodness, what a fool I have to work with?