{in theatres} The Animated Short-Film Oscar Nominees

Yesterday, I reviewed the live-action short-film nominees. Today, we’re on to the delightful animated entries.

Adam and Dog

@ 2011 Adam and Dog

@ 2011 Adam and Dog

Minkyu Lee’s beautiful short film tells the Adam and Eve story from a new character’s point of view. The first dog explores Eden, befriends Adam, and faces a hard choice. The film is dialogue-free and gorgeously drawn. It was my favorite of the set for its distinct artwork, oh-so-dog-iness animation, and poignant theme: A true friend will follow you straight out of paradise and into the unknown.

Head Over Heels is a claymation treat by Timothy Reckart. The film portrays a couple at odds without dialogue but with a multitude of whimsical sight gags and imaginative visual storytelling. I laughed out loud and teared up just a little at the end.

Paperman is Disney’s short-film entry directed by John Kahrs (animator on Tangled, Bolt, Ratatouille, The Incredibles, Monster’s Inc., Toy Story 2, A Bug’s Life). You might have seen Paperman when played before Wreck-It Ralph‘s theatrical release. The film will probably win the animated short-film Oscar for its black-and-white animation and sweet story of boy-meets-girl, boy-loses-girl, paper-airplanes-aid-in-getting-of-the-girl story. It’s lovely, if predictable, and it uses some brand-new CG-plus-traditional-drawing software that animation geeks are very excited about. Watch it and read more here.

Maggie Simpson in “The Longest Daycare” is everything you love about The Simpsons: Razor wit (Maggie fights her way through The Ayn Rand Day Care Center), imaginative visual jokes, and tight storytelling. This film goes without dialogue as well, and there’s no need for it. Directed by David Silverman (a frequent Simpsons directer and co-director of  Monster’s Inc.), the short is humor timing perfected.

Fresh Guacamole is two minutes of pure imagination by the festival favorite PES (who is rumored to be doing a Garbage Pail Kids feature soon). There’s no use explaining it when you can just watch it.

Do you have a favorite animated short?

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Sarah Magill

Sarah Magill has a full-time movie habit made possible by a day-time greeting card writing gig. She blogs at Gimme Some Film and is learning to write scripts and direct. She tries to balance her screen obsession with trail running, jazz singing, book clubbing, and hanging out with The Best Golden Retriever Ever, Copa.

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Comments

  1. LIz Stevens — February 12, 2013 @ 11:16 pm (#)

    Love short films! The Paperman one is so great!

    • sarah — February 14, 2013 @ 10:01 am (#)

      Agreed : )

  2. Ali | Gimme Some Oven — February 13, 2013 @ 12:45 pm (#)

    I was reading up on the new animation techniques on Paperman. That stuff boggles my mind.

    I need to see Adam and Dog! Love the premise! :)

    • sarah — February 14, 2013 @ 10:01 am (#)

      Animation is such a science+art. Very cool.

  3. Brian — February 13, 2013 @ 4:34 pm (#)

    I just saw them this afternoon. Paperman is still my favorite. It’s kind of predictable, but I still connect with it emotionally every time I see it. And I’m a huge fan of the hybrid animation style.
    I was also a big fan of Head Over Heels. While Paperman is about falling in love (well, meeting cute, at least), Head Over Heels does a nice job of depicting the far more difficult task of staying in love. The way it depicts two people occupying the same space but living totally separate lives is really great.
    Adam and Dog was very enjoyable too. Great art style and totally made me want to hug a dog.
    I liked the other two (and Guacamole was very creative), but they didn’t resonate quite as much.

    • sarah — February 14, 2013 @ 10:01 am (#)

      Yeah, Paperman got me, too. So did Head Over Heels. The whole animated slate is high quality!