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, whose directors I interviewed ahead of their awards season tour.
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.
I’ve been looking forward to interviewing Nora Twomey, especially now that her empowering adaptation of The Breadwinner has arrived, with the aid of Angelina Jolie, to shine a light back on Afghanistan, still in the crosshairs of the longest war in American history.
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.
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, watching stunning animated cinema and interviewing talented directors.
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.
This expressive war epic from the assistant director of Kiki’s Delivery Service handles the toughest of topics with art, skill and grace. I spoke with director Sunao Katabuchi for Cartoon Brew.
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.
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.
We are slaves to fossil fuels, Chasing Ice director Jeff Orlowski once told me. His new film, Chasing Coral, may find that we have also broken our (food) chains.
When I first learned that Matthew Rankin was crafting a surreal short about Nikola Tesla, I knew I soon would be picking his fertile brain about free energy, bird love, and why dystopians are marching to the sixth mass extinction.
The debut trailer of Cartoon Saloon’s newest animated exploration has come at last.
An international collaboration directed by the gifted Nora Twomey, who I’ll interview later this year, and co-produced by Angelina Jolie, whom you may have heard of, The Breadwinner examines the terror and terraformation of Afghanistan through a gender-fluid prism quite rare for animation.
The National Film Board of Canada is responsible for some of the finest animation the world has ever seen. It has also created world-changing documentaries exploring and analyzing how and why our world changes as it does, for better and worse.
Jeff Lemire has been creating some of the most unique comics of the last decade. Just ask Ryan Gosling, whose interest in Lemire’s recent stunner, Underwater Welder, may bear cinematic fruit.
Batman is more than capable of meeting demand across social, economic, political and cultural divides.
A wordless wonder in the tradition of Chaplin, with an eye to rural labor and love, Aardman’s stop-motion masterpiece is for everyone, everywhere.
Paco Roca’s Wrinkles was one of the most moving graphic novels, and animated films, in recent memory. His promising new comic charts a path through the destabilizing territories of war and healing properties of the natural world.
Let’s turn back to the greatest jam band on the bones, and a master of literary horror, reanimated.
Although he is one of the most immediately recognizable directors in film history, David Lynch originally wanted to be an artist.
An unblinking look at the dramatic debate over nuclear power.
Halloween found me wishing happy birthday to the one and old only Ralph Bakshi, whose anti-sermon shook the toonscape.
“At my age, I wouldn’t release it if I thought it didn’t work.”
Extraordinary Tales brings Poe’s harrowing stories to the screen for newer generations raised on boundless technologies and influences.
It doesn’t take long (at all) for the stubborn and refreshingly frank Tartakovsky to hold forth on his frustrations with the way Hotel Transylvania 2 and Popeye were handled.
Like his Oscar-nominated feature debut The Secret of Kells, his new stunner Song of the Sea is steeped in regional folklore but still a universal wonder. But it is a more personal epic, about the extinction of mythological seal people called Selkies, as explored through a lighthouse family riven by loss and misunderstanding but healed by history and magic.