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Entries in animated films (382)

Friday
Dec082017

The 2017 Animated Contenders: "In This Corner of the World"

by Tim Brayton

Of the 26 animated features submitted to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science for Oscar consideration last month, a respectable five – just the thinnest hair under 20% - came from Japan. Ignoring Oscar eligibility, and throwing Your Name. on the pile (it was a 2016 Oscar hopeful but its commercial U.S. release came this spring), and 2017 has been a pretty fine year for anime in the United States.

Out of all those films, I humbly submit that the best one is In This Corner of the World, director Sunao Katabuchi's adaptation of a 2007-'09 manga series by Fumiyo Kōno. It's actually the story's second cinematic incarnation: in 2011, it was adapted in live-action. I haven't seen that film, but even so, I cannot fathom how it could be anything but a pale echo of the Katabuchi film: In This Corner of the World is an extraordinary triumph of animation as a storytelling vehicle. And this is no less true just because it's telling a mostly realistic story that doesn't "need" to be animated...

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Monday
Dec042017

Annie Nominations Embrace "Coco" and "The Breadwinner"

by Nathaniel R

Coco and The Breadwinner are the top competitors for the Annies (and maybe the Oscars)

The Annie Awards first began handing out prizes in 1992 but weren't quite on a calendar year yet with Beauty and The Beast, a 1991 film, honored in that inaugural year. They've since aligned themselves to the calendar and last year their top prize went to Zootopia, which also took the Oscar. Coco leads their nominations for 2017 and also presumably leads the Oscar race with The Breadwinner the widely admired darkhorse at both. Presumably again as we won't know what the Oscar nominations are until January 23rd. 

Both of the leaders are powerfully rooted in cultural specificity (Mexico and Afghanistan respectively) and are, in their own way, tearjerkers, rather than the more traditionally glib action comedies that tend to be the bread and butter of the animated film world... at least in America.

We'd love to raise a glass to the nominations for the streaming series Trollhunters which we're huge fans of but we'd rather throw the contents of that glass inb Annie's face for preferencing Cars 3 and Despicable Me 3 over the insanity of The Lego Batman Movie. If you wanted to honor a sequel, that's really the way you wanna go? The complete list of nominees and a few more comments, cheers, and jeers are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Dec012017

The 2017 Animated Contenders: "The Big Bad Fox"

by Tim Brayton

If you've been following the Best Animated Feature Oscar for the past few years, perhaps you remember the 2013 nominee Ernest & Celestine, a gentle and generous children's movie from France, about the adventures of a bear and a mouse becoming best friends while on the run from the law. This year, two of that film's producers and one of its directors are back in the hunt with The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales, an anthology of stories about the inhabitants of a rural farmyard in France.

The film took a roundabout path to theaters. Based on comic books by Benjamin Renner – the Ernest & Celestine director, back to help usher his material to the screen, with co-director Patrick Imbert and co-writer Jean Regnaud – the three stories were initially intended to be episodes in a TV series. Somewhere along the way, they got promoted to feature film status, with the help of a framework narrative presenting the stories as plays put on by an enthusiastic, barely-competent theater troupe of farm animals.

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Wednesday
Nov292017

Coco, CMBYN, and the Specificity of Feeling Seen at the Movies

by Jorge Molina

Award season means trying to watch as many movies as possible in the shortest amount of time to feel included in the zeitgeist (well, in our zeitgeist here, at least; movies from all across the board that, apart from wanting to be in the awards conversation, often have little in common.)

Recently I watched two movies that, at first glance, couldn’t be more different. On one hand there’s Coco, Pixar’s newest entry about a Mexican boy wandering into the Land of the Dead. And on the other, there’s Call Me by Your Name, the much-discussed festival favorite that follows the romance between a teenager and an older man in sun-drenched Italy. On the surface, these two films don’t share much yet they offered me a very similar cinematic experience.

Both made me feel seen (yes, in italics). They reflected parts of my identity that I rarely get to see reflected on screen. How did they do that? By being as specific as possible...

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Sunday
Nov262017

Box Office: Animation of 2017

by Nathaniel R

This long holiday weekend saw the releases of three major Oscar contenders. Call Me By Your Name had a sensational per screen average (101,000 per screen). Darkest Hour also showed its prosthetic Churchill face for a good opening ($44,000 per screen). And then there was Pixar's Coco, which easily trounced Justice League to take the #1 spot. Critics are raving and, more importantly, Latino critics are raving, too, as you can see at Remezcla and here at The Film Experience.

So let's do the box office report differently this weekend and look at this year's Animated Features...

ANIMATED FEATURES AT THE BOX OFFICE IN 2017
GROSSES AS OF NOV 26th
1. Despicable Me 3  $264.3 
6. Captain Underpants $73.9 
2. Lego Batman Movie $175.7 7.🔺 Coco $71.1 REVIEW 
3. The Boss Baby $175 REVIEW
8. Lego NinjaGo Movie $59 
4. Cars 3  $152.9  9. Smurfs: Lost Village $45 REVIEW 
5. The Emoji Movie $86 REVIEW
10. Nutjob 2 Nutty by Nature $28.3 

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Saturday
Nov252017

59 days til nominations. Time for a little Disney trivia

by Nathaniel R

Disney won every single short category plus Documentary Feature at the 1953 OscarsWith 59 days left until Oscar nominations, it seems an appropriate time to remind everyone that it's not Meryl Streep (20) or Woody Allen (24) or even John Williams (50) who holds the record for Most Oscar Nominations of All Time, but industry titan and one of the most influential people who ever lived: Walt Disney. His fingerprints... or mouse glove prints if you will, are still all over showbiz, especially the business part. But we're here to talk Oscar. He received an incredible 59 competitive Oscar nominations, winning 22 of those races.

So in addition to holding the record for most nominations, he also holds the record for most wins. The last of those nominations and wins was his only posthumous honor -- Winnie Pooh and the Blustery Day (1968) took the Animated Short Oscar (then called "Best Short Subject, Cartoons")...

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