Thursday, 5 November 2009

"Bave Circus" Philippe Desfretier, Nicolas Dufresne, Sylvain Kauffmann & Martin Laugero (2008)

The circus arrived late to town. Snails are slow creatures needing a little coaxing. Made by four students from that amazing animation factory, Supinfocom Valenciennes, Bave Circus is a delightful film by Philippe Desfretier, Nicolas Dufresne, Sylvain Kauffmann and Martin Laugero. A young boy sits in his tree house on a rainy day, the far off pennants of the circus fluttering above the big top. Investigating the contents of a red box uncovers a host of multi-coloured gastropods, snails to you or me. Now there are lots of things a young French boy can do with snails but this fellow places one on a convenient piece of string allowing it to enact the first of a series of gravity defying feats before, ladies and gentlemen, our very eyes, in a performance that develops to incorporate the boy himself in the action. There is considerable charm to the 3D piece - courtesy a utilisation of impressive artistic ability, Autodesk 3DS Max and Adobe After Effects. As is now customary from students of Supinfocom, and elsewhere to be fair, the animation is handled adroitly. I particularly liked the cinematic quality of it all in which, by way of example, focus changes from boy to snail or we follow the swish of the trapeze act, a tribute to skillful and smooth editing as well as the animation. Where the latter comes into its own however is the magic of boy at snail size as well as the stars of the show, the snails themselves, all translucent colours of the rainbow. Thomas Miquel’s music enhances an already excellent short.

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