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Monday, February 11, 2008


2008 Oscar Nominees - Animated Short Films

Two weeks until the Oscars, which means it's time for ModFab's annual look at the nominees in my favorite category, the Animated Short Films. No There Will Be Bloods or Junos here; this group, almost exclusively comprised of first-time nominees, is viewable online for free. Watch them below, along with our guesses at which will win the golden statue:

I Met the Walrus (view trailer)
director: Josh Raskin

This interesting adaptation of an unconventional John Lennon interview has innovation and nostalgia working for it, but at the end its dazzling stream-of-simulated consciousness gets a little overworked visually. Sure to resonate with baby-boomer Oscar voters, though, and I love the use of found text.

Madame Tutli-Putli (view Part I/Part II)
directors: Chris Lavis and Maciek Szczerbowski

Undeniably my favorite of the five, this fragile tale of a woman's railroad journey is a feast for the (overactive) imagination. Some of the finest stop-motion animation I've ever seen, period. And the characters, even though mostly silent, are vibrantly alive. Although it's very different stylistically and tonally, I keep being reminded of The Triplettes of Belleville when I watch this.

Même les Pigeons vont au Paradis (Even Pigeons Go To Heaven) (view here)
directors: Samuel Tourneux and Simon Vanesse.

The only pure comedy among the nominees, this spiritual farce is charming, polished, and as deep as a kiddie pool. On pure style points alone, it might have a chance. But with four other nominees that feel significantly more substantive in comparison, Pigeons may have trouble.

My Love (Moya Lyubov) (view Part I/Part II)
director: Alexander Petrov

Petrov is the only previous nominee in this category -- he won here for The Old Man and the Sea in 1999 and has been nominated twice previously, for The Cow in 1989 and The Mermaid in 1997 -- so he comes into the competition with a distinct advantage. My Love is also unerringly beautiful, too...an Impressionist painting put into motion. It strikes me as a little flat emotionally and missing definition, but there's no way it won't be a contender.

Peter & the Wolf
(view Part I/Part II/Part III)
directors: Suzie Templeton and Hugh Welchman

An adapation of Prokofiev's classic piece for children, it is, in my view, the weakest of the nominees. It seems a bit lifeless.

Will Win: My Love
Should Win: Madame Tutli-Putli

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Blogger jason said...

oooh thank you for this!

2/11/08, 9:27 PM  
Blogger Manuel B said...

Thanks ModFad ! I am glad someone takes the time to illuminate those smaller categories that (other) people only care about apparently for tie-breaking Oscar pool reasons. :P

2/12/08, 9:07 AM  
Blogger T$ said...

thanks for posting these - I'll have to carve out some time to watch them.

I'm an animation sucker...and I'm always aching to watch the nominated short films.

2/14/08, 6:25 PM  
Blogger Tyler said...

opps, missed the predictions! good post though....

2/25/08, 3:37 AM  

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