Did the Right Film Win? 2013 Animated Oscars

Hi guys!  We are up to 2013 in my series on the Animated Oscars and I have a special treat for you! Queen Elsa has come to visit to review all 5 films!

elsa2I admit in my review for the Disney Canon of Frozen I was a little defensive and perhaps overly concerned with trolls.  This time I took a different approach and just decided to have fun with it. I know people feel all kinds of ways about Frozen and I explained it as best as I could.   But there are plenty of great animated films for everyone so hopefully you can enjoy hearing my thoughts on one I enjoy.

The other 4 films are also worth seeing (no Shark Tale skunks in this year!).

Ernest and Celestine- Done by some of the same team that did The Illusionist and The Triplets of Belleville.  This is a watercolor sketchbook style story about an unlikely friendship between a mouse and a bear.  They kind of become bandits and the friendship evolves over time and then when both are put on trial they teach their societies something important about love, labeling and racism.  A real gem of an animated film (and can also be very funny).

Despicable Me 2- I think the Despicable Me movies are just ok and I wasn’t a big fan of Minions, so I wasn’t sure what I’d think of Despicable Me 2 on the rewatch.  I think the disappointment of Minions actually made me appreciate this film even more.  It has a lot of solid laughs, which didn’t happen in Minions.  I really like seeing Gru with the 3 little girls and being an overprotective Dad.  The Minions are also funnier in small doses than the main attraction.  It’s no masterpiece but a decent comedy for kids.

The Wind Rises- The strongest competition for Frozen.  A great film that just gives us the life of a man and we decide what we think of him and his dreams.  It is a story about hope and how a dream can carry you through tough times.  It is a magic-free film from Miyazaki about the life of a airplane designer named Jiro during World War II.  It made my top 50 animated countdown so clearly I love it.   It goes without saying the animation is stunning.

The Croods-  This was a new one for me from Dreamworks.  I’d heard bad things about the film and you know what? I actually enjoyed it.  I liked it was about a family and thought the script was pretty funny.  I liked how the created new animals and world for them to meet.  It made it unpredictable and surprising.  I liked the voice cast especially Nicholas Cage who has a freak-out even animated!  It’s not a masterpiece but liked it a lot more than I thought I would.

I’d still give the Oscar to Frozen because I think it has the best characters, music, story and everything else.  One of my favorite animated films from Disney.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!  🙂

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Did the Right Film Win? 2011 Animated Oscars

Hi guys!  Time for the next in my animated oscars series.  Today we are looking at 2011 which was an eclectic year for animation with no Pixar or Disney nominations.  I personally would have nominated Arthur Christmas and Winnie the Pooh but the 5 they went with are interesting in their own right.

This is a bit of a long one but I think you will enjoy it.

Basically I thought Puss in Boots may be my favorite film from the Shrek universe.  I like how they kept the parody elements down.  I also liked the 3D back when I first saw it and think the animation holds up very well.  The voice work by Antonio Banderas is good and I like the action which was a loving homage to Zorro and those kind of classic films.   On downside I didn’t love how they handled the Salma Hayek character.  She starts strong but isn’t treated with much respect and ends up having to be rescued and as an ordinary love interest.  I also think it can feel a little episodic and gets a little convoluted at moments.  But overall I enjoy Puss in Boots.

Kung fu Panda 2 I really enjoyed.  I know many readers don’t care for it, which is cool.  Always good to have a variety of opinions.  I think they toned down the humor and made a real kungfu movie with good fight scenes and battles.  I think they also majorly upgraded the villain with Shen voiced by Gary Oldman.  I like the adoption subplot and the development of the Furious Five is much better than in the first.  Overall, I think it is a good martial arts movie!

Then we have Cat in Paris which was a huge surprise for me.  I had never heard of it and I really liked.  I thought the animation was unique and beautiful.  I really liked the Mother character and felt she was well developed and interesting.  The story surprised me and didn’t go exactly as I thought it would.  The music is really strong and it’s both scary and funny.  Its a real hidden gem.

The fourth nominee is a foreign film called Chico and Rita.  This is a very adult animated film with a lot of nudity and I had to skip over sections.  That said, I liked the character of Rita and the music.  The animation I thought looked rotoscoped and generic; although, there are pretty moments.  I didn’t like the character of Chico and felt the movie was a little to easy on him.  He’s a real jerk and doesn’t deserve Rita.  The jazz music is really catchy and I can see why it was nominated even if it isn’t my cup of tea.

The final nominee is Rango.  If you have been a fan of the blog you might remember my review of Rango last year. I was pretty tough on it and I must admit I liked it a little bit more this time around.  The beginning has some interesting surrealist touches and towards the end the story picks up.  I appreciate they were trying to do something different but overall the pallet feels very beige to me so everything ends up looking bland and the same.  I also feel it takes way too long for the story to get going and don’t find Rango ambling around very funny.  Granted I haven’t seen many Westerns it is spoofing so that may be part of it.  I think the characters are underdeveloped and you go long stretches without characters which makes them even weaker.  Overall, I’m just not a fan of Rango but I see why others like it.

Of course, Rango won for the year and I think in this case the wrong film won.  There just isn’t enough story and the artistry is too bland for me to get behind Rango.  If I had to pick out of the 5 I would go with Cat in Paris.  I think it is visually inventive, the story surprised me and I really liked the characters.  Overall, it is a real delight.

What would you pick out of the 5 films?

Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet Review

The new film released by Gkids, Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet, is a tough film for me to review.  It has great stuff wrapped in a not-so great packaging.  There is a side of me that wants to give it a free pass because it is made with such love and devotion, it is in 2D animation and the parts that are good are really good.  But for long segments the The Prophet feels like a Sunday School lesson and so I am torn on it.

The Prophet is based on Kahlil Gibran’s book of poetry called The Prophet, which is a popular book of spiritual affirmations and positive thoughts.  Evidently it was a passion project for Salma Hayek who produced the film.

prophet3To set up for the poetry they have a framing device of a man named Mustafa (voiced by Liam Neeson) who has been on house arrest for stirring up the people and giving them hope.  He is a prophet of some kind, a very Messianic like character.  There is a little girl named Almitra (voiced by Quenzhane Wallis) who has refused to talk for 2 years because of the death of her father.

prophet211These sections reminded me of the old Living Scriptures animated movies we used to watch in Sunday School but even those had an actual story (Daniel and the Lions Den, David and Goliath etc).  This is just a lot of Almitra getting into trouble, authorities moving them around and then Mustafa proselytizing to the people for long segments.

There are 8 shorts within the framing device directed by some of the great artists and animators of our time and those are wonderful but it’s all the other stuff that is tough to sit through.  I’m surprised Lion King director Roger Allers wasn’t able to wring more drama out of it. They were just too long and boring.  Perhaps they should have just done it Fantasia style with a concert and shorts approach?  That would have been much better because you would have gotten right to the cream filling!

Anyway, the 8 shorts are

On Freedom-

animated by Michal Socha, Sound designer Bartek Baranowski.  A beautiful segment with birds and wires symbolizing both being caged and released.

prophet5On Children-

Animated by Nina Paley, Music by Damien Rice. From the creator of Sita Sings the Blues a beautiful short

prophet7On Marriage-

Directed and Designed by Joann Sfar a tango of sorts that was a very strong effort.

prophet2On Work-

Directed, designed and animated by Joan Gratz  (this one was a particular favorite of mine.  It reminded me of Van Gogh painting)

prophet4On Eating and Drinking-

Directed, designed, animated by Bill Plympton (another favorite)

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Plympton_ProphetOn Love-

Directed by Tomm Moore.  This one really had a strong narrative and I kind of wish it was a feature not just a short.

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prophet11On Good and Evil-

Directed by Mohammed Saeed Harib

prophet14 prophet15I found this segment available online.  It will give you a feel for the picture. 

On Death-
Directed, designed, animated by Paul Brizzi, Gaetan Brizzi.  It reminded me of the same animators efforts on Fantasia 2000.  Beautiful.

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The voice cast is all fine.  Liam Neeson is of course good as Mustafa and Salma Hayek is endaring as Kamila.  Even now I’m finding myself saying ‘it was pretty good’ but I’m telling you while I was watching those framing segments were really hard to sit through.

My advice on this film get it on dvd and go to the shorts.  Watching it that way you would have an argument for one of the best of the year.  In a way it is a little bit of a shame they are all together because what a great race we’d have for Best Animated Short with all these greats contributing!

It’s tough to give a grade to a film that is so up and down.  A film that tries so hard even in the sections that don’t work…I love the shorts so overall I’m inclined to be generous towards it I suppose.

Overall Grade- B-

No content problems that I saw.  PG and even Bill Plympton keeps it clean 🙂

Did the Right Film Win? 2009 Animated Oscars

Hey guys!  So 2009 was a very strong year for animation.  It was a year with 5 films nominated for Best Animated Feature Film and all 5 I enjoy.  There were also strong films that I personally think could have gotten a nomination in another year like Ponyo (I know you’all disagree with me on that one but oh well!), 9 and A Christmas Carol, to name a few.

Not only are the 5 films nominated very strong but they are also really different so I had a lot to say about each.  I ended up making 2 videos about them (my editing software was also giving me all kinds of grief so I got up what I could in 2 batches).  The first video is about Princess and the Frog and Secret of the Kells.

Basically I’m hot and cold on Princess and the Frog.  There is a lot I love about it and then things I really don’t like.  I love the animation, the character of Tiana, vocal performances and 3 of the songs.  I don’t like the voodoo elements, the convoluted story or Prince Naveen.  He is not Tiana’s equal.  All in all, that puts it in the middle of my Disney rankings. It’s certainly worthy of the nomination and worth a watch even with some major flaws.

Secret of the Kells is beautiful and looks like illustrations from a book.  It is only lessened in my opinion because I think Song of the Sea by the same team is much better.  Maybe an unfair comparison but I can’t help it when they are so similar.  Nevertheless, Secret of Kells has a beautiful look to it.  I like the story and the lead character Brendon is very appealing.  The Aisling of the forest is beautiful with stirring music from Kila.

The next video has the remaining 3 films- Fantastic Mr.  Fox, Coraline and Up.  You all have heard my thoughts on Up ad nauseam but I did get a little emotional when talking about it and how it reminds me of my Grandpa who I love.  It’s a special movie to me and I filmed the review several times but each time I started to tear up.  That was my honest response so I left it in. 🙂

Fantastic Mr Fox is a very creative film directed by Wes Anderson.  I love the world building and the story is a lot of fun based on Roald Dahl’s book.  I really like the characters like Ash, Mr and Mrs Fox.  The story is unpredictable even for someone who has read the book and it is extremely creative.  It is actually my favorite Wes Anderson film and while I don’t find it super funny I do enjoy it.

Coraline is a film from Liaka and I liked it much more this g0-around.  I always enjoyed it but for whatever reason I really was charmed while watching it this week.  It is directed by Henry Sellick who did Nightmare Before Christmas and it has the same dark tone and style of that film.  I love the character of Coraline.  She is sincere, quirky, endearing, inquisitive and in the end loving.  She ends up getting presented with another version of her family through this magic portal and it leads to some big scares but also a huge heart.  I love that she comes to accept her parents for who they are, even though they aren’t very good people in a lot of ways.  She still loves them anyway.  It’s really surprising and visually inventive.

In this case, I clearly think the right film won because Up is my favorite movie.  If I was going to pick a second place I would pick Coraline, but I can see people’s arguments for all 5.  What would you pick?  Thanks so much for your comments and for watching the videos.  It has been a great series both on the channel and this blog and next up is 2010 where my Tangled got snubbed (wa, wa, wa,….).  I look forward to watching the Illusionist for the first time.  Thanks!

Did the Right Film Win? 2003 Animated Oscars

Today I uploaded the next in my Animated Oscars: Did the Right Film Win series.  We are on to 2003 and we get 2 special films and one that I hate.

If you guys follow my blog you know I did not like Brother Bear.  You can read my full review to find out why I felt it made the wrong choice every time and got a rare F from me.

The two worthy nominees are Finding Nemo and The Triplets of Belleville.

Finding Nemo is the wonderful Pixar film about a father fish searching for his son who is in an aquarium miles away.  It is funny, creative, very well paced with beautiful seascapes.

The Triplets of Belleville is not for everyone.  It is challenging 2D animated film from Sylvain Chomet.  The story is about a woman who’s Grandson becomes a cyclist but then is abducted.  She meets a famous vaudville act The Triplets of Belleville who help her find her Grandson and sing a lot of catchy songs along the way.  There is no dialogue for the most part and it is very strange but I like it.  The animation is stunning and the music will make you want to dance.  It made my Most Artistic Animated Films list.

So what do you go with the artistic film with great music or the crowdpleaser with great heart and good jokes?  Watch the video and find out. 🙂

What would you pick? Would love your thoughts on if the right film won in 2003.

The Rachies- 2014 Animation Awards

The Oscars are coming up this weekend and I have seen every animated film that came out in 2014.  I’ve seen all the big, medium and tiny films I could get my hands on.  20 in total.  Needless to say I love animation.  It is my favorite medium of film because it literally is art on the page and for the most part it is family friendly and well rounded (comedies, dramas, comic book movies, the whole 9 yards).

So, I’m going to give some of my own awards for animation this year.  Here goes…

Overall Best Animated Film- Song of the Sea

song of the sea4Best Mainstream Animated Film- Lego Movie

the_lego_movie_2014-wideBest Use of Music and Animation- Tale of Princess Kaguya

princess-kaguyaBest sequel- How to Train Your Dragon 2

how to train your dragon castFavorite Character- Baymax Big Hero 6

baymaxBest Villain- Archibald Snatcher The Boxtrolls

Boxtrolls-Ben-KingsleyBest Adult Animated Film- Rocks in My Pockets

rocks in pockets4Worst Movie- 3 way tie Legends of Oz: Dorthy’s Return, Nut Job and Hero of Color City. All stinkers don’t see!

Downloads2Best Comedy- Penguins of Madagascar

penguins1Best Tragedy-  Wrinkles– I cried my eyes out but in a good way.

wrinkles-graphic_1Most Beautiful World Creating- Book of Life

The-Book-of-Life-5Better Than I Expected It To Be-  Mr Peabody and Sherman

mr peabodyBest Direct to DVD- Pirate Fairy

pirate fairy3Shoney’s Award- Not Good but Not that Bad,  Planes Fire and Rescue

PLANES FIRE & RESCUEBest Hidden Gem- Miniscule: The Valley of the Lost Ants

MinusculeBest Steampunk Movie- Jack and the Cuckoo Clock Heart

jack--the-cuckoo-clock-heart_32261404703551Best Song Sequences- Rio 2

rio2-2Best Sunday Inspirational Movie- Henry and Me

henry and me9There you have it!  All the animated films of 2014.  What tremendous variety and what a great experience I had watching them all.  It will definitely go down as one of my favorite years ever. Happy time to be an animation buff.

Song of the Sea Review

song of the sea4

I have been hunting down the hidden animated gems from 2014.  Today is probably the most prominent hidden gem as it has an Oscar nomination: The Song of the Sea.  It is from Cartoon Saloon and distributed by Gkids Films directed and written by Tomm Moore.  It is the same team who made the lovely Oscar nominated Secret of the Kells in 2009.  As wonderful as Kells is I think Song of the Sea is even better.

I can’t remember the last time I cried so much in a movie and in a good way.  In a ‘I love these characters and I’m involved in the story’ kind of way. It is the 3rd animated film in 2014 to deal with subjects of death, grief and loss in a mature and beautiful way.  I was really moved by it and wish more people would see it.

There will be some spoilers but I will try to keep it to a minimum.

song of the seaThe main story is about a family that lives on a small island running a lighthouse.  At the opening little boy Ben loses his mother to childbirth with his sister Saoirse.  We then quickly move up and find out she is an odd child who at 6 has never learned to talk.  Ben resents his sister and he constantly carries around his mother’s book of Celtic legends.

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The stories focus on a myth called the selkie which if you’ve ever seen The Secret of the Roan Inish it is the basis for that movie as well.  The selkies live as both seals and humans and they have a power which animates everything including other magic like fairies.

The characters then go on a journey where they face peril, meet an Owl witch, some more friendly fairies and learn much more about Saoirse, Ben and their Mother. (I really don’t want to give much else away).

song of the sea3As you can tell from the photos on this post the animation is gorgeous. It flows and never makes the easy choice.  Everything has the feel of a wave because that is the power of the selkie myth.

song of the sea7There is a scene where Ben must say goodbye to his Mother and just writing about it now makes me tear up.  It really moved me.  The only thing I can think to relate it too is in Harry Potter when Harry has to stop looking in the Mirror of Erised and has to say goodbye to his parents.  It’s that kind of emotion.

song of the sea10
The Mother in the story

In front of me at the theater there were two little girls maybe 4 and 6. They were very chatty but it was kind of interesting to hear their reactions.  It definitely scared both of them at certain points and they were pretty upset.  Song of the Sea also has some jump scares and very tense moments that build.  They were asking their Mother if so and so character was going to be ok, very worried.  That’s really the only downside to Song of the Sea is it is pretty sad and scary in spots.  Characters go a lot of the movie heads hanging down in mourning.

This would not be the movie to put on for the kids birthday party or for a lively sleepover.  However, it would be good for a Sunday night movie viewing where there is time to discuss more challenging concepts with kids and get their thoughts. Save comedies like Lego Movie, Penguins of Madegascar or Spongebob for the parties and use Song of the Sea for a quieter softer parenting moment.

fairies song of the seaIf you can get out to the theaters and see it I would implore you to go.  Support hand drawn and smaller animation at the box office.  Movies like Song of the Sea deserve a wider audience.  I would love if we could get out of having a 2 system animation world and embrace lots of different studios and ideas.  That would be amazing!

I loved it.  I was really moved by it.  It made me cry and laugh on occasion. It’s sad but it is not a downer.  It is so hopeful and peaceful even in the sad moments that you don’t feel manipulated with your tears.

It was stunningly beautiful and even though I got lost from time to time in the Celtic lore it didn’t really matter because I knew enough of what was going on to root for our heroes.  The voicecast is also good with David Rawle, Brendan Gleeson, Fionnula Flanagan, Lisa Hannigan and Lucy O’Connell.

song of the sea5

I just wish more people would see it.  I went into Song of the Sea wondering if it was worthy of the nomination over Lego Movie (which I loved).  They are so different but yes Song of the Sea deserved it over Lego (Boxtrolls which I also loved should have been left off).  Song of the Sea is one of the best animated films I’ve ever seen.  Yep.  I will use that hyperbole.  I loved it!

The music by Bruno Coulais and Kiia is pitch perfect.  Like I said the only thing to really consider is if it might be too sad for very young children and when is the best time for a more thoughtful picture for our kids.  I bet they will love it too!  I think it is better than Princess Kaguya in both artistry and story and that’s saying a lot.

Overall Grade- A+

My youtube review.  Got emotional talking about it.

Rocks in My Pockets: A Review

rocks in pockets4 One of my goals this year is to watch the hidden animated films of 2014.  I have already reviewed Jack and the Cuckoo Clock Heart, Wrinkles, Miniscule: the Valley of the Lost Ant, and Tale of Princess Kaguya.  I am planning on seeing Song of the Sea this weekend so look for that review to be coming.  All these smaller films have been beautifully animated with unique stories you won’t get from the major studio.  I highly recommend taking a look at the reviews and finding the film that looks the most interesting to you.

Today we are going to talk about the adult animated film Rocks in My Pockets.  This is an extremely challenging film and it is definitely not for everyone but I’m glad I saw it.

Trailer

It is the work of Latvian artist Signe Baumane and it is practically a one woman show.  She writes, directs, animates the entire film.  She even provides the narration which is problematic as she is clearly not a native English speaker and it comes off very robotic. At first I actually thought it was a computer translator not a person.

rocks in pockets9
The animated Signe

Rocks in My Pockets is the tale of Signe’s family history of mental illness.  It is done using hand drawn and paper mache stop motion.  It is brutal, disturbing, vulgar and upsetting at times.  That’s why I say it is definitely not for everyone but I also found it moving, raw, honest and beautiful in the way disturbing art can be.

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She starts with the story of her Grandmother who tried to commit suicide in a river but did not have rocks in her pockets so she failed in her attempt.  I don’t know if I’ve seen a movie that so accurately describes the panic, madness, and strange peace that happens inside the heads of those dealing with mental illness.  I have never had that serious of an incident but I have had panic attacks so I related to all her descriptions.

rocks in pockets5

In the former Soviet block nation of Latvia the psychiatrist hands out pills, mainly valium or puts the mentally ill in an insane asylum; thereby either trying to dull or hide the problem.  We have come a long way in a sense but we still have a long way to go on the stigma and treatment of mental illness in America today.

rocks in pockets3

Signe then tells the stories of 4 of her cousins and  in the most painful segment her own story of  battling schizophrenia.  Like I said it is disturbing and brutal stuff but I was strangely moved by it.  I guess it felt like someone sharing their soul through art and I appreciated that.

rocks in pockets1

The section on post partum depression was interesting. Signe says it is the ‘legitimate’ mental illness.  I never thought about it but that is really true even if it is still not treated with the weight and importance it should.  There is a very disturbing section where her Grandmother see’s a rabbit eating her own babies and she looks at her 8 children and for a second is envious of the rabbit.

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When Signe has her own baby and it is a transcendent experience for her but it doesn’t make the mania inside her go away it was a very poignant moment.  Her cousins have the same problems wanting to love desperately but feeling unable to do so.

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The animation is gorgeous and constantly daring and surprising the viewer. I loved how it moved and felt like a sketch from inside Signe’s mind.   Since all the stories are about women the female bodies are intentionally drawn in a way so they look nude despite being fully clothed (except for one scene where a back is shown). You get a feeling Signe feels naked while drawing this story and that leads to her visuals.

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With mental illness Hollywood tends to either make the sufferer scary and erratic or loveable and sweet.  Signe does none of that.  She tells their story in all its rawness yet still has great love and sympathy for the characters.  It defies every cliché you could imagine and that moved me.

It is also unafraid to talk about self harm and other destructive techniques of ‘indulging your insanity not fighting it”.  The end of the film she talks about her day to day life and how she has learned to cope with her illness finally summarizing her survival method beautifully.

“I am a working artist.  This is my work in progress.  I have to continue to live to complete it” 

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That’s not to say it is perfect because it’s not.  Signe’s narration is a huge problem.  Like I said it is robotic and very off-putting and since there is no other dialogue that is unfortunate.  I don’t know if we needed to hear about every cousin and Signe and the Grandma. It’s a 126 minute movie, pretty long by animated film standards.  I would have cut it down to 90 minutes.  As it is you leave the experience exhausted.  You are stimulated and maybe even inspired but exhausted.

Rocks-in-my-pockets

Signe also doesn’t give us any answers.  She just tells the story but maybe in a way that is the answer? “You will never  be able to walk and talk again without the yellow green and pink pills” said the doctor without giving her a diagnosis. Her sister then says ‘Maybe it’s good to tell everybody so that they know what’s in their genes…It’s in the genes. You were designed to be crazy”

Maybe we just need to let people tell their stories?

Like I said not for everyone but I was moved by it.

The score by Kristian Sensini is also extremely strong and moving.

Overall Grade- B (mainly because the narration is a big stumbling block. If they changed that to a professional actor it would get an A).

Wrinkles: A Review

wrinkles-graphic_1

Is your greatest fear growing old and getting put in a home to wither away isolated from the world?  If you answered yes than I have the movie for you.  The Spanish animated film Wrinkles is one of the saddest movies I’ve ever seen.  That’s not a knock against it.  There is absolutely a place and even necessity for tragedies in cinema.   And I was moved by it and terrified and cried my eyes out…

Here’s the trailer.

Wrinkles has an interesting story.  It is animated using hand drawings by the Spanish artist Paco Roca.  It was released in Spain in 2011 and was nominated for an Annie in 2012  Nevertheless, it was the short list of possible Oscar nominees in 2014 because of finally getting an American cast dubbing and release in April 2014 (they certainly took their time!).  It cost only $2 million euros to make (2.2 mil dollars).  That’s astonishing when you see how lovely the animation is and even a low budget film like Secret of the Kells cost 6.5 million euros. It shows how cheaply animation can be done and achieve something beautiful.

Arrugas-Wrinkles-movie-3

Wrinkles is about a man named Emilio who is put into a nursing home by his kids and given a man named Miguel as his roommate.  In the English dubbing these parts are played by Martin Sheen and Matthew Modine respectively. And basically the movie is about the deadening day to day life at the home and Emilio’s descent into Alzheimers.

wrinkles_06cMiguel is a bright light even if he cheats a few people out of money at the home.  He does everything he can to make people happy in their delusions and it is sweet to see.  For instance, there is a woman who fantasizes she is on a train to Turkey and he brings her a menthol cigarette she doesn’t light and they talk about how the journey is going.

Miguel is also very sweet with Emilio who grows paranoid as he loses one thing after another.  Emilio’s family comes to visit on Christmas (only on Christmas) and he can’t remember his grandson or why they are there.  He hates it at the home but it is where he needs to be at the moment.

wrinklesThere is a swimming pool at the home which taunts the residents who are not mobile enough to get in the water . However, it is very appealing to the younger generation putting their father in the home because ‘we remembered how you used to love to swim’.  That is the so sad…There is one triumphant scene where Emilio decides to swim anyway and it is tense and joyous and completely lovely.

The ending with a prison break from the home seemed a little far-fetched but still lovingly done.  Everything about the movie is lovingly done.  It is heartbreaking but with love and it profiles an issue we don’t want to talk about.  We want to hide it away like we hide the people away.  As someone who doesn’t have children I will probably end up in some place like that.  It’s so sad.

WRINKLES - 1There is some humor mixed in and the dialogue is very well done. Miguel gets most of the jokes and like I said he is the light in the home.

Wrinkles is definitely grown up animation but I think it is an important message for kids to learn too.  Life is still life even if they can’t remember and are hidden away.  There is 2 uses of the F word but it is pretty clean story.  It is definitely a heart breaker but in Miguel’s case there is a thin shred of hope throughout the film. I was really moved by it. Since when did every story have to be a comedy? Tragedies are important so we can absorb our own tragedies better.

It’s tough to watch but sometimes that is the most profound.

Overall Grade- A, Content Grade- B