Monday, February 04, 2013

Oscar Nominated Animated Shorts 2013

This week I saw the theatrical release of a compilation of the 2013 Oscar nominated animated shorts. All the nominated films are dialogue-free, & the program is suitable for children

Maggie Simpson in "The Longest Daycare"
David Silverman; USA, 2012, 5 minutes

Maggie battles the unibrow baby in the world's worst daycare center. I enjoyed the characteristically irreverent throw-away gags, like the TSA-style security checkpoint at the Ayn Rand School for Tots.
Adam and Dog
Minkyu Lee; USA, 201, 15 minutes

The story of the Garden of Eden, told from the point of view of a loyal dog. The film has the hand-drawn look of classic Disney cel animation. I liked the many shots in which the characters are only small figures in the landscape.
Fresh Guacamole
PES; USA, 2012, 2 minutes

Ingenious stop-motion animation in which incongruous non-food objects stand in for the ingredients of a guacamole.
Head over Heels
Timothy Reckart and Fodhla Cronin O'Reilly; 2012, 15 minutes

Stop-motion animation depicting an aging couple who live in the same house but are separated by opposing gravitational forces. Despite the absurdity of the set-up, the tone is serious.
John Kahrs; USA, 2012, 7 minutes

Stylish Disney short in black & white, combining CG with fluid hand-drawn characters. A spontaneous romantic connection is made amidst the skyscrapers & elevated trains of New York City.

The program is filled out with additional "highly commended" films.

Richard Mans; New Zealand, 2011, 4 minutes

CG animation depicting a robotic creature's efficient colonization of an alien planet. It's an evil version of the NASA missions to Mars.
Leo Verrier; France, 2011, 9 minutes

A feverish cartoon homage to Jackson Pollock. An art thief not only steals but also ingests his acquisitions.
The Gruffalo's Child
Johannes Weiland and Uwe Heidschötter; UK, Germany, 2011, 27 minutes

CG animated version of a children's book about a little girl monster who goes into the forest alone to learn fear. I found the story charmless, but I also did not quite follow it. This was the only film with dialogue, & it was rhyming at that. The animators did not come up with good solution for depicting fur.

The compilation is hosted by William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg, who won in this category last year with The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore. They speak to the viewer between films, but their commentary has nothing to do with any of the shorts

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