Isao Takahata: 1935-2018

April 9, 2018 Morphizm 0

A towering influence.

And yet he still left so much to be discovered.

I watch his art each night before dreaming.

Rest in peace, dear influential.

The Big Bad Fox’s Hand-Drawn Laugh-Off

January 11, 2018 Morphizm 0

In our apocalyptic epoch, sometimes you need an old-school good time grounded in the natural world. Enter The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales, from the directors of the wondrous Ernest and Celestine, who I interviewed ahead of their consecutive Academy Awards nod.

Birdboy’s Interconnected Pollution

January 9, 2018 Morphizm 0

Writing about animation provides me the opportunity to probe the minds of brave filmmakers working against stereotype and industry. That struggle found an apotheosis in the surreal fever dream of Birdboy.

Fox And The Whale’s Metafictional Immersion

January 3, 2018 Morphizm 0

Earth is inspiring, even in the midst of failure. This is an important lesson I learned after interviewing director Robin Joseph about his stunning animated short, Fox and the Whale, a homemade, hand-drawn cli-fi fable debuting, to Oscar acclaim, in a world on fire.

We Can’t Separate Food From Politics

November 9, 2017 Morphizm 0

One of our most persistent fictions of climate change is that the food industry, whose waste and emissions must be brought under immediate control if we are to survive the Anthropocene, can live without immigrants, whose existence puts the lie to nations and nationalism.

Quartz Joins My Civil Resistance

November 8, 2017 Morphizm 0

Call it syndication, or call it the sharing economy. It feels good to see your hard work spread across the spectrum. So thanks to Quartz for picking up my Civil Eats explainer on the Farm Bill’s doom.

Say It Loud and Proud, Oscars: Animation Is Film

November 1, 2017 Morphizm 0

As the establishment continues to reject toxic industry, the movement to place our attention on issues worth the public’s time is reaching critical mass. And that movement will likely sweep The Breadwinner into awards season.

Farmers Markets Come Under Presidential Fire

October 30, 2017 Morphizm 0

My latest investigation for Civil Eats is not so much alarming as predictable. The current presidential administration, already an international laughingstock, has targeted farmers markets for elimination. The punishment? Death by pointless cuts.

A Cartoon Man’s Cartoon Men

October 28, 2017 Morphizm 0

Some of the most influential animation in history have come from the hearts and minds of Phil LaMarr and Carl Jones, including The Boondocks, Samurai Jack, and more. That was all I needed to pick up the phone.

Animation Is Film, Said The Festival

October 23, 2017 Morphizm 0

It may not seem like we need to have a three-day festival in Hollywood celebrating animation as cinema with a capital C. But if that was the case, I would not have spent the weekend with my girls in Hollywood at the Animation Is Film festival.

Feeding The Resistance

October 5, 2017 Morphizm 0

In a globally warming, warring world where Americans throw away half the food they grow, nourishing activism with a heart and mind in service of renewable peace is paramount. Enter author Julia Turshen, who I profiled for Civil Eats.

What Is Organic? Depends On Who’s Asking

September 25, 2017 Morphizm 0

This investigation for Civil Eats is about the terminology we take for granted so that billions of dollars can exchange hands in the organic market, as we throw away over a third of the food we ask our burning Earth to provide us.

Guru Studio’s Aim is True

September 8, 2017 Morphizm 0

For decades, cooler-headed Canada has helped lead the way in animation innovation and mindful programming. Its rising studio Guru is carrying those goals forward in the fantastic new Netflix series, True and the Rainbow Kingdom.

Cli-Fi: 75 Years Later, Bambi Terrorizes

August 15, 2017 Morphizm 0

Written by an immigrant Jew hounded by Hitler, and envisioned by a Chinese immigrant dreaming of America, Walt Disney’s Bambi remains an unheeded warning of terror and terraformation, sadly forgotten by a burning world careening into an exponential apocalypse.

Cli-Fi: The Dead Zone, Mass Extinction Edition

August 4, 2017 Morphizm 0

Stephen King’s horror novel never saw this real-time nightmare coming. A state-sized dead zone at the bottom of the South, which is so deprived of oxygen it might as well be deep space — which is, recalling Alien, where no one can hear you scream.

Niko and The Sword of Light Illuminates Amazon

July 31, 2017 Morphizm 0

The fact that Amazon chose to invest a healthy budget in Titmouse and Niko, in search of staying power and cultural relevance, should be a warning shot to the animation business as usual. After all, as Titmouse told me, we’re in a cartoon gold rush.

Looking Back at Animation’s Future, With Ralph Bakshi

July 24, 2017 Morphizm 0

I’ve spoken a few times with animation auteur, Ralph Bakshi, who pioneered the pathways of underground and overground cartoons for decades. This time, we analyze the live-action/animation merge of Cool World, which like its foundational forebear, Lord of the Rings, created the CGI universe we take for granted today.

Chasing Ice And Coral, Running Out of Time

July 14, 2017 Morphizm 0

It is my honor to be writing for the Center for Biological Diversity’s shiny new publication, The Revelator. My first piece is an interview with the fearless Jeff Orlowski, director of Chasing Ice, and now, Chasing Coral.

Nuclear Cinema: Hiroshima’s War-Torn Corner of the World

July 7, 2017 Morphizm 0

An assistant director on Hayao Miyazaki’s sublime, stunning Kiki’s Delivery Service, Sunao Katabuchi has since made his name well-known in anime film and television. But his impressive new film, the award-winning Hiroshima epic, In This Corner of the World, might make him a household name worldwide.

Cli-Fi: Soundgarden’s Fourth of July

July 4, 2017 Morphizm 0

For me, there’s only one song that explains the United States of America falling apart in the 21st century, and it is probably no cosmological accident that it is written by the late, great Chris Cornell and Soundgarden.

Bong Joon Ho’s Okja Animates Cli-Fi

June 29, 2017 Morphizm 0

Revolutionary filmmakers are shaping the future of cinema by analyzing our destabilized planet. Snowpiercer director Bong Joon Ho’s new vision Okja, out today from Netflix, was inspired by biodiversity at the mercy of capitalization and extinction.