Thursday, April 8, 2010

High Five Info of Cartoon Animation

This are high five information in cartoon animation going to held between April 9 - 15.

  1. “Ran” changes Shakespeare’s king to a samurai lord, his daughters to sons, and throws in a Lady Macbeth-ish wife for one of them. But its chief creations and most profound delights are cinematic: vast, gorgeous landscapes; splashes of lurid color; a score played by an entire orchestra; heated, bloody battles; tricks of scale and perspective and contrast.
  2. “How to Train Your Dragon” The latest 3D adventure film is also one of the very best family entertainments in years a genial tale of a young, nerdy Viking boy’s encounter and eventual friendship with a deadly dragon, the very species his people have spent generations trying to vanquish. The script is funny and sharp, the vocal work bright. But the real star is, as it ought to be, the animation: fantastic textures of skin, hair, water, smoke, thrilling action sequences, uncanny depth of field, and so on. It doesn’t feel real-real, as “Avatar” did, but it’s meant to be a (you should forgive the term) cartoon, and it’s a doozy.
  3. “Mother” South Korean director Bong Joon-Ho came to attention here with “The Host,” which looked like a monster movie but was really about a fractured family. This film is nearly the opposite, telling the story of a selfless mom (Hye-Ja Kim, utterly, utterly glorious) trying to clear her dimwitted son (Bin Won) of a terrible crime to which he has confessed. There’s actually a murder mystery at the heart, which keeps you well on your toes, but the real drama is in the woman’s crusade. And Bong concocts a myriad of vivid filmic ideas. Gripping, funny, and altogether terrific.
  4. Ashland Independent Film Festival This year’s AIFF is the ninth, and features world premieres of two made-in-Oregon features along with an invariably well-curate selection of dramas, documentaries and shorts, many of particular local interest. Ethics force me to reveal that I’ll be speaking about my Paul Newman biography at an event on Sunday, in exchange for which the festival is according me lodging. But I’d be there anyway, as I have in the past: it’s always worth the drive to see good films in such a magnificent setting.
  5. CHEAPIE OF THE WEEK (Good values for tough times) “A Town Called Panic” A truly unique movie that never stops surprising and delighting. Using stop-motion, a pair of Belgian animators have brought plastic toys to life inside a world with a warped logic and zippy energy all its own. A horse, a cowboy and an Indian live together in a little village which turns upside-down when somebody does something dumb and draws the attention of some mischievous extraterrestrials. Filled with wild and silly humor, ceaselessly entertaining, its like “Toy Story” made by insanely inspired kids. Note: although it’s excellent family fare, it is subtitled.


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