Animation Now! is a bit of a film festival staple, I’ve been going to them off and on for many many years now, it’s a combination of short animation pieces from around the world, and can be pretty spectacular sometimes.
Last year, for intance, they had academy award winning animations included, and the ones that hadn’t won academy awards were still pretty astonishingly good. For the most part at least.
This year it seemed a lot more hit and miss.
There was one real stand out piece, an Australian short (about 5 minutes long) called ‘In My Day’ (2005), which is a collaborative effort between primary school children, elderly residents, and a local animator from a small town called Natimuk, the older residents tell tales of their childhoods in the town (and in the school) in the 1930s, and the children drew pictures to go with the storie. Really brilliant stuff. And the only piece that got applause from the audience.
‘McLaren’s Negatives’ (2005) was interesting, telling the tale of the life and works of animator Norman McLaren. There was a tiny little Australian one called ‘An Unusual Circumstance’ (2005) which was very sweet. And there was a horrible, brutal, and really just generally unpleasant piece from the USA called ‘Son of Satan’, nasty nasty stuff. Another quite nicely made piece was out of Taiwan, and called ‘The Man of the Hour,’ pretty good stuff.
Worst pick of the bunch? I don’t know. But ‘Sans Secularity’ (2004) was pretty friggin’ bad. Otherwise, I guess it would be pretty mean to list all the bad ones, so I won’t bother. (Also, bad animation is so forgettable you tend to, you know, forget it.)
It was only on once, so I don’t need to bother saying ‘save the price of the ticket for something a bit more reliably good’.