Monday, December 11, 2017

Elf on the Run (AKA Teresa eta Galtzagorri)

I just watched this movie through my cable's on demand service directed by Agurtzane Intxaurraga. It is about a girl and also an elf who escapes from the forest into a carnival, to be captured by a circus ringmaster and then set free by the girl. The girl is mad at her mother for being mean to her, especially compared to her baby brothe,r a series of events partially brought on by her accidentally breaking her mom's camera in a Rube Goldberg-esque way. This alienates the children she's playing with who leave and don't come back for the rest of the story. I don't want to spoil too much so I'll stop there save for a few critiques.

The highlight of the movie is the art direction and animation which is surprisingly good for what is a low budget production. The story is a bit above average, notable more for not including annoying characters and including the right pieces than for pushing boundaries. To put it succinctly, it's a direct to video sort of film but for once it's actually good. At least until the dance party moments in the ending. The version of the film I watched is dubbed in English and I probably would have enjoyed it more in the original language which I'm reasonably sure is Spanish. This film is a little weird in that it's available in a lot of places but there's little information available on it.

I give the movie a 7.5 out of ten. It is the best animated film I've seen since Mune. I might share my thoughts on Mune or Short Peace soon. I tried to catch A Silent Voice in theaters but it was only playing at night and I had to work. I'll have to watch it on DVD when it comes out.

For those who are reading this post in the United States, contact your local congressional members and tell them to support net neutrality. If you look at this site, you'll be able to identify your local congress persons and find out whether they support net neutrality or not. If they don't, let them know that you won't stand for it.

Friday, April 28, 2017

North of Blue and Window Horses

I found out through Animation World Network that Joanna Priestly is creating North of Blue, an abstract animated feature. Read about it there for your self. The trailer has yet to be released.

Window Horses is an animated film about a shy poet who goes to a poetry festival in Iran. It's showing in festivals right now. I hope to either catch it at a festival or see it in a later commercial release. There's no saying how long this film will stay obscure.

I'm currently working on a page with information on film availability. One change I may make in the future is promoting films that are simply old and not just obscure ones. After all, many animated films are becoming less and less obscure. I'm also entertaining the idea of making an animation web forum for overshadowed movies outside of the mainstream of US and Japan. See you all again when I make the next update.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Defunct Animation Blogs

Over time there's been a lot of animation blogs that produced good content but eventually shut down for one reason or another. It's a bit frustrating to see some of the best animation blogs and even communities disappear and to make it worse, half the time you're not sure why the blog closed.

Frames Per Second Magazine link
Animatsiya in English link
Ha Neul Seom link
Michael Sporn's Splog link
Too Long for Twitlonger link
Animondays link
Keith Lango Animation link

I have been around the animation community for a long time and seen a lot of blogs close. Frames Per Second closed because of the death of Emru Townsend who couldn't find a kidney for transplant. Animatsiya in English closed because of the blog runner Niffiwan's frustration with video takedowns and probably from moving on in life. I still don't know why Ha Neul Seom closed down and it's a shame and I don't know why Your Daily Cartoon has stopped. Michal Sporn's Splog, as anyone who's visited it knows, ended when Michael Sporn died. Too Long for Twitlonger had some really interesting commentary but wasn't around for very long. Animondays was a good blog though I remember surprisingly little of its content aside from the Craig Bartlett interview. Keith Lango had perspective and animation tips but got caught up in work.

Some blogs are as far as I can tell, still around but haven't been updated in a while.

Animation Backgrounds
The Animation Activist
AniPages Daily

Many of the great sites of the animation blogosphere are gone or on hold. The English Animatsiya(Russian animation) community is dead and tensions between the US and Russia are very high(Syria, elections, etc...). IMDb has closed down all its forums. The only movie stores left in my area are big box stores and video game stores. In brighter news Netflix is investing in original content some of it good, but distributors getting into the animation game isn't how I wanted the progression of animation to happen.

I'll be updating this blog and making improvements. My links section is badly out of date. There is more to do and I need to get to it.

Edit-4/9/2017 Removed Your Daily Cartoon from the defunct blog list as I see that it has recently been updated.