World Animation Celebration
Thursdays, July 26 through August 30, 2007
Thursday 7/26 at 3:30, 5:30, 7:30, 9:30*
*Please note 9:30 show has been cancelled.
(1973) dir Rene Laloux w/Jennifer Drake, Sylvie Lenoir [72 min]
This Czech-French production was the winner of a special jury prize at Cannes and has gained notoriety for its creative and surprising depictions of a distant universe. In a post-apocalyptic future human beings are enslaved to a race of enormous humanoids. Kept as playthings and pets and mercilessly killed by the their captors, wild humans have to attempt to escape execution and build a better society for themselves. Dealing in political allegory and produced during the Cold War; FANTASTIC PLANET explores the concepts of war, exile and eventually the notions of mutual understanding and harmony. Famous for its surrealist and mind bending style FANTASTIC PLANET features a surprising array of strange, mythic creatures and toys with notions of intellectual and spiritual transcendence.
(2006) dir Satoshi Kon w/Megumi Hayashibara, Toru Furuya [90 min]
Fasten your seatbelts! A nerdy engineer invents the DC-mini, a device that enables access to people's dreams, and it isn't long before some of the prototypes are stolen. When the DC-mini falls into the wrong hands, it's up to a prim psychotherapist and her sprightly alter-ego, the titular PAPRIKA to find the culprit before the dream-state and reality irrevocably collide! Satoshi Kon borrows imagery ranging from classic Hollywood, to the circus, to childhood fantasies to create one of the best examinations of subconscious desire seen in any movie. Kon's smart and challenging films are an ideal introduction for anyone who thinks anime is just for kids, and PAPRIKA's artistry and unexpectedly sweet emotional payoff make it one of the most delightful films of 2007.
Daydream Nation: Swedish Animation
The NYC programming entity known as Package Deals have already released 2 wonderful compilations of short films from Iceland and now they have moved on to the unexpectedly prolific land of Sweden – where things must be good right now because the country is bursting with both fantastic animation and sensational music. This program of animated shorts highlights the best of both worlds with music videos for some of indie rock’s hottest artists – Peter, Bjorn & John, The Knife, and El Perro del Mar, to name only a few.
Best Of Ottawa Animation Festival
The largest animation film festival in North America takes place every fall in the Canadian capital. The Ottawa International Animation Festival also puts together a package of favorites and award-winners from its festival. We are pleased to present the BEST OF OTTAWA 2006 with fantastic shorts from more than a dozen international filmmakers hailing from Brazil, England, Germany, Japan, the Czech Republic, Canada, and the USA. Our personal favorite in the program is the neo-viking action film music video by Joel Trussell for Jason Forrest’s bombastic, “War Photographer.”
Thursday 8/16 at 3:30, 5:30, 7:30, 9:30
The Adventures of Prince Achmed
(1926) dir Lotte Reiniger [66 min]
In this mythical fable, director Lotte Reinger blends a collection of stories from Arabian Nights. Famed for being the world’s oldest surviving animation feature, THE ADVENTURES OF PRINCE ACHMED features Reiniger’s unique silhouette animation technique. In the tradition of shadow puppetry, Reinger animates metal and cardboard cut outs over a lighted glass background and uses a multiplane camera to capture the adventures of her carefully crafted figures. The film chronicles the titular Price Achmed as he battles a wicked sorcerer and encounters many of the staples of Arabian fairy tales including unearthly beasts, a beloved princess and Aladdin.
Screens with short animation from the Brattle’s collection.
(2005) dir Jan Svankmajer w/Pavel Liska, Jan Triska [118 min]
Legendary Czech surrealist Jan Svankmajer's films have disturbed, amused and provoked audiences for over forty years, and his admirers will be relieved to know that at the age of seventy-two, Svankmajer has created his most audacious work yet. Taking cues from Edgar Allan Poe and the Marquis de Sade, Svankmajer intersperses his live-action parable about absolute freedom versus absolute control in an insane asylum with stop-motion interludes featuring dancing slabs of human appendages. It all amounts to a hilarious and grotesque study of institutionalized control, and while LUNACY is challenging, Svankmajer's genius invites and rewards an open-minded approach to his latest outlandish work of art.
(aka The Frogs Who Wanted A King)
(1923) dir Wladyslaw Starewicz [9 min]
Legendary Czech animator Starewicz’s version of one of Aesop’s more terrifying fables features a country of frogs who beseech the gods for a king… and end up with a murderous tyrant.
Street Of Crocodiles
(1986) dirs Timothy & Stephen Quay [20 min]
The brilliant Quay Brothers animate the surrealist novel by Bruno Schultz using their trademark miniature puppets. Breathtakingly original.
A Scanner Darkly
(2006) dir Richard Linklater w/Keanu Reeves, Robert Downey Jr., Woody Harrelson, Winona Ryder [100 min]
After mastering episodic comedy, raucous nostalgia trips and realtime digital video experiments, Richard Linklater has recently turned his attentions to animation. His ear for stoner-philosopher speak and affinity for Austin misfits make A SCANNER DARKLY a return to form for the director. Linklater's rotoscoping technique lends an extra level of paranoia and disassociation to Philip K. Dick's classic story of a covert drug enforcement agent whose identity is kept a secret even from his superiors. Things get really weird when he is assigned to investigate himself. A SCANNER DARKLY works as a thoughtful, elegiac statement on drug abuse, a vicious satire on the war on drugs, and as a testament to animation's endless potential for storytelling.