2011 Oscar Shorts

Go back to Oscars 2011 - Part I

Luckily, the Michigan Theater in A2 shows both the Live Action Shorts and the Animated Shorts. Though they only show it for a week and if you blink then you may entirely miss it. This time I wasn't blinking or napping and I did get to see both. They were both excellent and I've made personal note to myself to try to watch more of these. A lot of previews for these movies are available online. My comments are inline right after the movie below cause I think they all deserve a mention. The Shorts are the playground of the up-and-coming and seeing them one does not fear for moviemaking. Lot's of creative and brilliant work yet to come. Lot's of light in the dark.

Short Film (Animated)

Previews of the movies below

“Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary)” Bastien Dubois
This was rather strange. I really failed to get the story. The animation was great and it was sort of mixed media - different kinds of animation styles, but the story was terrible.

“Day & Night” Teddy Newton
This is from the Disney/Pixar. A feel-good comparison of Night and Day impersonated by two creatures that come from these two worlds. They look Casperish. Cute! Showcases the animation talent and a creative theme.

“The Gruffalo” Jakob Schuh and Max Lang
Helena Bonham Carter lends her voice to the mother telling her kids a story about a happy-go-lucky mouse who bluffs his way escaping predators by making up a story about a "Gruffalo". 'What's a Gruffalo?' you may ask. I guess that's the point. A great story and technically very sound.

“Let's Pollute” Geefwee Boedoe
A sarcastic look at the modern world with all it's waste. Encourages people to pollute and destroy the planet. A animated version of a Michael Moore style polemic. Interesting, but not that compelling. Great job with the technical animation details.

“The Lost Thing” Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann
If I had to own a movie then this would be the one. It's Orwellian, Dahl-esque and Kafka-esque at the same time. A nerdy boy in highly industrialized city presumably in the future finds a strange object/creature and tries to find a home for it. I don't want to give away the punchline and if the movie rightly wins the award then it may be available on the web. It's about a loss of wonder in a society that so rigidly follows rules and directions that they don't explore or wonder anymore.

See trailer here

Who should win: The Lost Thing
Who will win: The Lost Thing

Short Film (Live Action)

“The Confession” Tanel Toom
This is story of two boys about to receive their First Holy Communion in the Catholic Church and one of the kids is such a good boy that he has nothing to really confess for. Thinking that not having anything to confess for will not allow him to enter the Church, he wants to find some sin. They boys concoct a plan and invariably mishaps occur. Not funny ones, but gruesome ones. Well boys will be boys right?

“The Crush” Michael Creagh
A story of Ardle, a 7-year old who develops a crush on his class teacher and decides to tell her that he wants to marry her. She finds it amusing and so does her thoroughly inconsiderate fiancee. Ardle challenges her fiancee to a duel. Very cute movie.

“God of Love” Luke Matheny
This is entirely shot in black and white and has an old feel, but timeless quality to it. Luke Matheny wrote, directed and acts as the "God of Love". He gets a package from Olympus Corporation that contains love-darts. While he tries in vain to get a girl he likes to love him back, it does not work. You fall in love with someone you are destined to fall in love with. And why is he chosen as the "God of Love"? Cause he has good aim.
See clip to find out why -
Oscar clip

“Wish 143” Ian Barnes and Samantha Waite
A teenager is terminally ill with cancer and the equivalent of Make-A-Wish foundation wants to know if they can arrange something special for him. His wish, called'Wish 143', is to get laid. Makes sense right? He's a teenager and has never got laid and he's going to die. The man at the foundation balks. He was expecting fishing by the lake, or a soccer game, or something of that nature. Some local matron volunteers to help, which the boy declines citing that he 'already did it'. He actually hasn't and it's up to his priest to arrange a hooker which he does. Hilarious!

“Na Wewe” Ivan Goldschmidt
This takes place in Gambia at the height of the Hutu-Tutsi Rwandan genocide in 1994. A car full of people gets waylaid by Hutu Power rebels and they decide to massacre all the 'Tutsi snakes'. The Europeans are let go first. Then each of the Africans makes some kind of excuse to get out of the killing by either claiming to be Hutu, not really knowing who their father was, etc. I would give away too much, if I mention who intervenes. You could say Bono rather obliquely, but

See clip: Na Wewe

Who should win:Na Wewe
Who will win:Na Wewe

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