2014 Oscar nominated shorts – Animation

The annual collection of Oscar nominated animation short is back. It is always fun to watch, for the stories they tell and the great variety of animation techniques that are featured. From Canada, Me and my Moulton is the National film board’s 73rd Oscar nomination. Norway born director Torill Kove’s autobiographical depiction of growing up with unconventional parents and her desire to get a bicycle. Although this is well done, the conventional NFB style makes this film less interesting. And technically, it is plain and unexciting. Not so with The bigger picture. British animator Daisy Jacobs paints on walls and furnitures to create life-size characters. This technique looks painstakingly difficult and time-consuming. It tells the touching story of two brothers taking care of their dying mother. Feast is a delight from Disney studio. It focuses on a little dog who is always eating. His life (and food) changes when his owner finds love. In A single life, when Pia plays a single vinyl record, she gets older or younger depending on where the needle lands. At only 2 minutes long, this clever computer animated short is close to perfection. The dam keeper is an allegorical fable about a little pig getting bullied at school. And then he becomes a friend with his new classmate, Fox. A bit like Animal farm. And a bit heavy-handed, with too many topics such as bullying and pollution piled on. Its saving grace is the beautiful animation made by a combination of painting and brush-stroke effects. Those five films being too short, this compilation also include four other shorts. Directed by five French animation students, Sweet cocoon is the story of an overweight caterpillar desperate to get inside his cocoon. It is the funniest and the nuttier film of the bunch. There is also Bill Plympton’s latest film Footprints and Glen Keane’s film Duet. The collection ends with Bus story, another NFB film. Over all this is a better than average collection.

And the Oscar went to… Disney’s Feast won the Oscar. Well deserved.

Rémi-Serge Gratton

2014 Oscar nominated shorts – Animation

77 min.

Rated Parental Guidance

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