SPARKS plays again Tue, 3/5 4:45 PM
SPARKS was kind of like a cartoon come to life, so I kept that feeling going and saw a whole block of cartoons with Shorts 4: Animated Worlds
BUTTERFLIES: A little girl is a promising artist, sketching the butterfly who lives with her. When a businessman sees her talent he gives her a job illustrating greeting cards. The job is on an assembly line, and is slowly killing her and her butterfly. A metaphor on how industrialization and profit motive kills creativity...or (as my friend Chris put it) a metaphor on how grants for the arts are killing industry.
BYDLO: Polish for cattle, they are brought literally up from the claymation dirt to the music from Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition No. 4, "Bydlo"
CICADA PRINCESS: 16 years dormant and underground, followed by one beautiful day of life on the outside. Beautifully constructed figures.
EXOIDS: Slugs vs. Robots in a post-apocalyptic Los Angeles hellscape. Need I say more? (A: No, it's clearly already awesome.)
KALI THE LITTLE VAMPIRE: None of the other kids will play with little Kali, just because he's afraid to step into the light. Pretty sad.
A KNOCK ON MY DOOR: The sad but hopeful life of a Korean immigrant to America, based on the life of director David Chai's dad. Simple animation hides a surprising, funny, and touching story.
LITTLE KAIJU: A little critter roams Tokyo at night, and a curious man sees him and follows him. Pretty and clever.
OLD ANGEL: Perhaps he's too old for his wings to work anymore. Or perhaps he just needs the right kind of encouragement to fly again.
PRIESTS: The funniest movie in the program, a young priest pesters his mentor with questions of life, God, stage fright, where you're allowed to stick your penis, etc.
SOUTH SEAS DREAM: Lee Lanier (BLOOD ROULETTE) returns with this weird little composition of found footage, music, dancing tikis, and fish. Now if I can just see the "director's cut" where she's not wearing those starfish...
YELLOW STICKY NOTES: CANADIAN ANIJAM: A project from 15 of Canada's best animators, all doing variations on the theme of a to-do list. Just simple line drawings on a yellow background. The cool thing was realizing I've seen so much of (most) of their works before that I could recognize their individual styles.
And for some reason, SLEIGHT OF HAND didn't play. I don't know what happened there. In any case, Shorts 4: Animated Worlds plays again Tue, 3/5 1:30 PM...hopefully with SLEIGHT OF HAND.
And finally (after a quick drink at the Maverick Meet-up at Farenheit) I was in for more shorts with the midnight program Short 5: Mindbenders. I always love the Mindbenders program, and this might have been all told the Mind-bendiest total program yet. The lest said the better, but here we go anyway.
ANAMNESIS: Bent my mind and my notion of memory.
DOKTOR FANG: Bent my mind and what I thought of Freud, Jung, the nature of dreams, and German expressionism.
THE HINDSIGHT BIAS: Bent my mind with a chilling answer to the question of what if you had it to do over again.
MALODY: Bent my mind--and gravity, in a story of a sick woman in a diner. Pancake batter.
MIMIC: Bent my mind by showing me what's about to happen in just a few seconds...
THE WOUND: Bent my mind and inspired the greatest question ever in the Q&A--"What the fuck!?" Hopefully soon to be a feature film!
Short 5: Mindbenders plays again Wed, 3/6 1:30 PM.
Total Running Time: 302 minutes
My Total Minutes: 318,186