Monday, 28 December 2009

Top Ten Animated Shorts of 2009: Disqualifications & No 10=

Two shorts were declared ineligible for the top ten animated shorts. The Scrutiny Committee declared Bruno Bozzetto's Bolero - Allegro Non Troppo to be in breach of the competition rules as it was deemed not a short, but a feature movie of which Bolero is but a section - a contentious decision as it deprives the list of one of the most spectacular musical animations ever created. Sarah Van Den Boom’s The Skeleton Woman was likewise disqualified on the grounds that it was only a trailer. The list is thereby denuded of its stylish depiction of a woman's struggle with identity and self-worth, reality and fantasy.

Number 10= If the officials were unnecessarily pedantic over disqualifications, they were lenient in the extreme when it came to allowing three movies to tie at 10=. They were....

David O'Reilly: Please Say Something was not I confess a first choice. Many of the features I look for in an animation are missing. (I can only say "beautifully drawn" so many times, I suppose.) However in its penetrating examination of relationships between husband and wife it made its mark with surprising power. Intellectually vigorous, economic in its presentation, it surprised and challenged.

Georges Schwizgebel: The Year of the Deer was a compelling work with a visual swagger in its broad brushstrokes. The narrative kept one gripped as hunter and hunted were brought together before what, in retrospect, was always going to be the conclusion. Georges is a marvellous animator capable of stunning imagery and inventive animation.

Kristian Andrews: Rabbit Punch is a contemporary animation that is ultra-realistic in its presentation of adolescence. (I wanted to include graduation films in the final ten.) Made at London's Royal College of Art, Kristian's partly autobiographical portrayal of two boys intent on mischief was superbly voiced, had a personal style in its drawing and drew one in to the action.

Tomorrow number 9, 8 and 7 in my selection of the movies of my year.

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