Instructional Media Center

• Animation Feature •


This month's IMC feature is animation - presented in no particular order.  There are many techniques in animation and these films include classic celluloid drawing, stop-motion, and live-action rotoscoping.  Remember "video" in the call# means VHS tape - those old giant tapes that your parents used to watch.  We have VHS players in the IMC.  Enjoy!

Fantasia - PN1995.9.A59 F3583 2000 DVD 
Walt Disney’s original uncut version.  Although the initial release failed to garner critical and popular acclaim, the film eventually gained traction in several edited re-releases.  In addition to being the first stereophonic film, it featured many innovations in music soundtrack recording

Triplets of Belleville - PN1995.9.A6 B45 2003 DVD
When a Tour de France cyclist is kidnapped by the French mafia midrace, it’s up to his grandmother and dog to rescue him.  Thank goodness they join forces with the legendary Triplets of Bellville, a trio of free-spirited musicians.  Enjoy the superb music and the one recognizable word in the film, “hamburgers”. 

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs - PN1992.8 .S569 2009 DVD
Adapted from the popular Brothers Grimm version, this 1937 Disney release is AFI’s number one animated feature all-time. Chocked full of subtle biblical allegory – the fruit from the tree of knowledge makes an appearance as… an apple.  Interestingly, the film’s signature catch phrase rhymes in both the original German and English!
Spieglein, Spieglein, an der Wand / Wer ist die Schönste im ganzen Land?

Bambi - PN1997.5.B3525 2004 DVD
A single mom struggles to raise her son in a rural ghetto teeming with homicidal maniacs and ne’er do well wild animals.  After mom is brutally gunned down, Bambi’s deadbeat dad (the self proclaimed Prince of the Forest) returns to guide the young diffident buck.  In doing so he dooms Bambi to a destructive, ineluctable destiny.  In the final scene, Bambi’s underage girlfriend gives birth to twins.  With no job and little hope for his family’s future, the immature stag struggles to come to terms with the burdens of life, prompting his now famous closing monologue “To be or not to be”…

Spirited Away - PN1995.9.A59 S657 2001 DVD

A cornerstone of the anime genre, critically acclaimed director Hayao Miyazaki wrote and directed this animated feature, which became Japan’s highest grossing film all-time.  The plotline follows ten-year-old Chihiro Ogino on her liminal journey through the realm of the bathhouse of the gods.

Wall-E - PN1995.9.F36 W3554 2008 DVD 
Considered by critics to be Pixar’s most artistic and thoughtful film.  Initially a bleak condemnation of human consumerism, Wall-E turns into a heartfelt robotic love story.  A sparse dialog adds to the sound design and visual concentration.

Persepolis - PN1995.9.B55 P4784 2008 DVD 
Based on Marjane Satripapi’s autobiographical graphic novels, which chronicle growing up in Iran in the 1970’s, this 95-minute film synthesizes all four books.  Black and white animation mirrors the books’ simple illustrations, providing the viewer with an experience surprisingly similar to reading.

Cowboy Bebop - PN1995.9.J3 C69 2002 DVD
One of the IMC’s most popular animated series.  According to Wikipedia – “Cowboy Bebop (カウボーイビバップ, Kaubōi Bibappu) is an influential, universally critically-acclaimed, and award-winning 1998 Japanese anime series directed by Shinichirō Watanabe, written by Keiko Nobumoto, and produced by Sunrise. Its 26 episodes comprise a complete storyline: set in 2071, the series follows the adventures, misadventures and tragedies of a group of bounty hunters, or cowboys, traveling on their spaceship, the Bebop.”

Howl's Moving Castle - PN1995.9.J36 H695 2006 DVD
When an insecure young woman is cursed with an old body by a spiteful witch, her only chance of breaking the spell lies with a self-indulgent young wizard and his companions.  An eclectic English voice-over cast includes Christian Bale, Billy Crystal, and Lauren Bacall.

Looney Tunes Movie Collection - PN1997.5 .L66 2005 DVD

Warner Brothers released this classic collection of shorts in 1979 - recently remastered for DVD.  Comprised of the most famous flicks from their ample catalog of cartoon classics including “What’s opera doc?”, “Robin Hood Daffy”, “Duck amuck”...  Not to be missed, Road-Runner vs. Wile E. Coyote shorts are the quintessential existential exercise in eternal hope beyond reason - like being a fan of the Chicago Cubs – or Portland Trailblazers.

Tex Avery's Screwball Classics - PN1997.5 .T4 1988 video
Avery is best credited with moving Looney Tunes away from children-oriented cartoon characters towards humor that adults could also appreciate.  Later at MGM he further developed characters and themes that pushed the envelope and paved the way for adult cartoon television.  Criminally unavailable on DVD, this VHS contains eight of his most beloved animation shorts from the MGM years.

Masters of Russian Animation - NC1766.R8x M3 1997 video
Although the history of film animation is heavily weighted with American contributions, the Soviets were no slouches.   This series of compilations highlights some award winning films of the Cold War effort from the Russian perspective.  Despite severe censorship, the films run an eclectic gamut of critical themes.

Animated Soviet Propagnda - D744.55 .A65 2006 DVD
From the 1920s to the 1980s, the Russian government ordered the production of several animated propaganda films. Their target audience was the Soviet Union itself and their goal was to win the hearts and minds of the Soviet people. Commentary by leading Soviet film scholars.

Waking Life - PN1997.5 .W353 2002 DVD
A young man stuck in a series of dreams from which he cannot awake explores the meaning of life. Rotoscoping allows the use of live action footage that was later animated.  Watch it for tips on how to realize when you’re dreaming.  They work!

Le chandail - PN1995.9.F7 C53 1991 video
A young boy from Québec loves his Canadiens de Montréal.  Through a series of unfortunate events he is forced to don the hockey sweater of their bitter rivals the Toronto Maple Leafs.  To put it in perspective, this would be worse than wearing a Yankees jersey in Boston.

The Simpsons - PN1992.8.A59 S56 2003 DVD
Who would have ever guessed that a crude skit from the Tracy Ullman show would turn into TV’s longest running animated series.  Created by Portland native Matt Groening.  In case you didn’t know, several of the characters are named after Portland streets.

Animal Farm - PN1995.9.A5 A6 2004 DVD 
A 1954 movie adaptation of George Orwell’s 1945 book.  George wasn’t particularly fond of Joe Stalin.

Phantom Museums : Short Films of the Quay brothers - PN1997.5 .P5368 2007 DVD
Twins Stephen and Timothy Quay have created some of the most detailed miniature stop-motion animation in the history of miniature stop-motion animation.  This two-disc set serves as a retrospective of their 30-year career and includes their most famous films along with shorts previously unreleased.

The Nightmare Before Christmas - PN1995.9.C5113 T56 2008
Jack Skellington “The Pumpkin King” has grown tired of the same old Halloween.  Jealous of the attention that Christmas garners, Jack sets out to remake the holiday in his own likeness and in musical fashion. Tim Burton’s unique animation technique set the bar for modern day stop-motion animation, sparking a renaissance in the genre.

Coraline - PN1997.2.A2 C6735 2010 DVD
Adapted from the 2002 award-winning story by Neil Gaiman.  A young girl’s family moves into an old house where she finds secret passage to a parallel world.  The first stop-motion animation shot in 3D, Coraline was filmed at Laika Studios in Portland!


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