November 30, 2012

The Animated Shorts You Must See

Animation has come a long way, but even to this day people and companies alike still find ways to innovate the long-standing medium.

Here is a list of the standout films that have that have both made their way to the academy awards and have slipped under the radar to go unsung. Regardless, just take a look and be amazed at the power of creativity these individuals were able to produce with a limitation that many take for granted, time.

La Luna: The short film that was released with Brave as an appetizer for the feature that almost stole the show. The story focuses on a young boy trying to decide whether to follow the examples of his dad or grandfather as they both hold the tedious occupation of being moon janitors. The aesthetics of the film resembled that of a Studio Ghibli film, the famous production house of the legendary Animation director, Hayao Miyazaki. La Luna director, Enrico Casarosa wanted the film to match that of the concept work that was all watercolor portraits, So for the background he painted the skyline in the same medium. The Disney/Pixar magic is sprinkled throughout the film and the heart in this movie is undeniable. La Luna is included in the Disc of Pixar’s Brave DVD/Bluray.

Rain Town: A graduation film by Japanese animator Hiroyasu Inshida (a.k.a. Tete). This film takes the traditional route by using pencil to paper for the majority of the feature accompanied by the help of a tiny bit of 3d animation and benefits greatly for doing so. The film evokes a somber yet hopeful tone from the audience all the while having exactly no dialogue whatsoever, A feat that hasn’t yet been achieved since the first few scenes of Pixar’s classic WAL-E. You’re not doing anything in the office right now. You’ve got plenty of time to check out Rain town here.

Arcane: This is another graduation film by French animator Bastien Belvaux out of EMCA, the animation school in Angouleme, France. For the art style (which by the way I’m really impressed by.) Belvaux uses simple geometric shapes to pull off a fully breathing and believable city and protagonist. The film is subtitled which is a bit of a bummer but I think also adds to the appeal of the film. Even for a short film this project is not too lengthy but, just long enough to introduce the protagonist, his objective and his revelation. Be sure to catch Arcane right here.

Playing with light – Mon ami le robot: Yet another French animated Short. This time directed by Louis Thomas, Theo Guignard and Benjamin Morea. Mon ami le robot focuses on the imaginative minds that children poses. In this case we are viewing a child going on a wild adventure with his robot companion through the deep depths of the ocean. The film has an impossible to miss since of heart but can still seem completely wacky at times. The art of this movie is about balancing the cute and cuddly with complete imaginative wackiness. I’m starting to fall on love with the attention to detail and craftsmanship That the French are teaching these animation students. Be on the lookout for some great work coming out of France in the coming years. You can check out Playing with Light- Mon ami le robot here

Pyrats: We will end this list of shorts with (you guest it) a French animated short. Pyrats is a short by a group of students who blogged the various stages of development of their project which was an interesting. The film does stand in the shadow of Disney as far as the art style but the thing that caught my attention was the fact that in just above a minute and a half the team just revealed an entire story plus plot twists to keep you entertained. Check it out here.

And there you have it folks, I’m sure these films will last you for the duration of your shift in your cubicle since of course; you’re on YouTube the whole time anyway. Don’t worry I won’t tell.

Image Credit: Pixar

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