Friday, March 6, 2009

World Builder - Man builds holo world for woman he loves.

World Builder is one of a couple videos posted by Bruce Branit available to view on Vimeo. This award winning short film is not only a fantastic display of computer graphic effects from Branit VFX, but is also a very touching story. More people need to be connected to films like these. This is a re-post from, go check out her site, it's a big wad of awesome. Oh and if you can, I recommend full screening this one. Enjoy.

World Builder from Bruce Branit on Vimeo.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Watchmen Saturday Morning Cartoon

This is of course a joke...there is no Watchmen cartoon for kids. But that didn't stop author Harry Partridge from purposefully , in his own words, "totally and unironically misinterpret[ing] the source material". Anyway, on the eve of seeing the finally realized live action Watchmen film, I hope all you longtime fans love this I much as I did. Sorry no embed, just a link (click on 'watch this movie' after the jump). Enjoy.

Saturday Morning Watchmen

UPDATE: Someone posted it to Youtube and I highly expect it to get pulled down soon, but if you are too lazy to click through to the authors site, here is a poor quality embed...while it lasts.

Watch the Oscar Nominated Animated Shorts Online

Oscar nominated animated shorts are always a little confounding to me, because it's not like you can just run out to any theater and see them for yourself. Sure some show up at the begining of other animated features, but other than that, you are lucky if you can even find them later in a compilation DVD (and that's if you even remeber to take the time to look). So I went out and hunted down the 5 animated shorts that were nominated for a 2009 Oscar: Lavatory Love Story, Oktapodi, Presto, This Way Up and the winner La Maison en Petits Cubes. They are all fantastically drawn and most are quite funny. La Maison en Petits Cubes is kinda sad, might wanna watch it first.  Enjoy.

NOTE: If any of these videos aren't working or are otherwise pulled down, please message me so I can find another source to embed.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Sita Sings the Blues - Gorgeous Combo of Animation & Music

Wow...after having watched this film last night, I am still stumped at how to best describe it. It is funny, it is sad, it is dramatic, it is...nothing short of beautiful.

Sita Sings The Blues is, at it's heart, a simplified adaption of part of the ancient Hindu allegory Ramayana. Interspersed throughout the film are scenes from the artist Nina Paley's own life and experiences, that parallel the story of Ramayana. On top of these are added two more layers. The first is the oft irreverent narration breaks that provide comedy and contrast between the two paralleling storylines (these moments have an almost Mystery Science Theater 3000 quality to them). The second is the musical numbers which are animated in sync with the luxurious voice of 1920's jazz artist Annette Hanshaw to emphasize Sita's (and Nina's) plight.  As for the award winning animation itself, there are four unique animation style changes throughout the movie!

Yet there is another separate, but equally interesting, story revolving Nina's struggle to get the film made and the permissions to release it. You see, Sita Sings The Blues is available to watch in it's entirety online, but cannot be shown commercially in theaters. In fact, due to our country's ridiculous copyright laws, Paley is restricted to selling only a limited run of 5000 DVD's. After that she can only release it as a free download (available March 7th, 2009) under a Creative Commons license. The copyright issues as well as radical fundamentalist threats on her life, are addressed and discussed in an interview with Paley, about the challenges of getting the movie made. I highly recommend this interview, as she touches on a lot of issues that commercial artists tend to avoid.

The following link will take you to the Sita Sings The Blues official website.

If you are interested in obtaining the music by Todd Michaelsen, you can purchase songs direct from the musician's page.

Below is a trailer for the movie, one of the musical scenes from the film and a compilation reel for music by Michaelsen. Enjoy.