This short animation adapted from a short story by Heather O’Neill, who also narrates the film, follows three fallen angels seeking companionship in Montreal’s red-light district. The survivor of traumatic childhood experiences, Johnny is a handsome thief who finds himself drawn to Mia’s fragile beauty. Both have a soft spot for Johnny’s best friend and partner in crime, Pinky. But when one of Pinky’s endearing quirks sets off a tragicomic chain of events, Johnny plots his revenge with methodical detachment. Peopled with characters living on the margins of society, this film casts light on the frailty of human relationships. The film features hand-drawn pencil and pastel animation rendered in stereoscopic 3D.
In this short animation, Oscar®-winning director Chris Landreth (Ryan, 2004) uses a common social gaffe—forgetting somebody’s name—as the starting point for a mind-bending romp through the unconscious. Inspired by the classic TV game show Password, the film features a wealth of animated celebrity guests who try to prompt our beleaguered protagonist to remember his old pal's name. Finally, he realizes he must surrender to his predicament and jump head-first into his subconscious to find the answer.
An elderly Japanese man boards a ferry bound for an unknown island. As he looks out over the water, the falling rain triggers a string of memories, including of a childhood experience in Fukuoka and a brief encounter many years later, aboard a smoke-filled seaside train. The only constant is the rain, a woman and Mount Fuji. When the man arrives on the island, it begins to pour, and a mysterious woman on a motorbike greets him…
Directed by Latvian filmmaker Vladimir Leschiov, Rainy Days looks at three key moments in its protagonist’s life, when events that should have happened never come to pass, yet change the course of his existence. The unique animation technique used to create the film, consisting of black tea and ink on paper and precise, delicate drawn lines, conjures a warm and tranquil atmosphere that mirrors the man’s graceful acceptance of his fate—and his awareness that all we have is what is.
This short animation takes a look at the redemptive power of food, wine, music and love through the eyes of our protagonist, Chuck. A husband and father, Chuck is jovially cooking dinner and listening to Chopin when his wife Sylvie spontaneously invites a group of boisterous colleagues over for dinner. The festivities begin to spiral out of control, and Chuck must find his way through a planned diner à deux that has turned into pandemonium. Filmmaker Bruce Alcock follows the fine tradition of beloved food films such as Babette’s Feast, using the preparation of a meal as a vehicle for exploring the grand themes of love and life through simple yet evocative line drawings.
This animated short presents a dilemma faced by a couple every time they go out to eat. Will their culinary differences douse the flames of romance, or will love prevail? Set to a rollicking doo-wop song by Canadian songwriter Alexander (Zander) Ary, the film brings Lynn Smith's gouache paintings to life as she animates directly under the camera. This short is a tasty comic narrative that skips along an array of tantalizing dishes. Vocalists Susie Arioli and Zander Ary each bring a unique interpretation to this funny, charming song.
A modern adaptation of the myth of Hercules, BAM tells the story of a young boxer struggling to negotiate between his shy, bookish nature and a divinely violent temper. Where does this rage come from? Is it psychological or environmental - or is it something altogether more primordial?
This funny short animation was written and created by Tali (At Home with Mrs. Hen) and is inspired by the filmmaker’s misadventures as a school bus driver in the Eastern Townships. Our protagonist dreams of becoming a bus driver in order to cruise down quiet country lanes and connect with nature, her young charges and their parents. But her idyllic view of her new job is sorely tested after she meets her surly boss, named Killer, and discovers that winding roads can prove treacherous in winter, especially with a faulty clutch. Through her cheeky humour and oblique look at the reality of people living in the Quebec countryside, Tali delivers a film that is unique, witty and touching.
This short animation is set to the words of poet Hélène Dorion. In the film, a man and a woman's love for each other rivals only their affection for the written word. Literature accompanies the murmur of their lives and the harmony of their feelings. Filmmaker Félix Dufour-Laperrière’s imagery parallels Dorion’s words to articulate the familiar cycles of longing, loss, and desire.
An allegory of mankind heading for disaster, this animated short is a tragic vision inspired by the 4th movement of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition. Drawing on the composer’s brilliant ability to evoke work and labour in his music, animator Patrick Bouchard brings earth to life through animated clay sculptures, creating a tactile nightmare in which man is his own slave driver.
This short animated documentary tells the story of 2 Chinese Canadian women making their theatrical debut playing “comfort women” in Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues. Jia Tsu Thompson and Mary Mohammed spend long hours rehearsing at Mu Lan Teahouse in Halifax, where they read their lines over and over, sip tea, and recount buried stories of war. As they diligently practise together and at home, they come to have their own personal catharses. Fusing activism and performance, the film honours the thousands of girls and women from Korea, China, Japan and the Philippines who were forced into sexual slavery—into providing “comfort” to soldiers in the Imperial Japanese military during the 1930s and ’40s.
This short animated film follows Antoine, a young boy fascinated by his mysterious neighbour, a man rumoured to have once been a big game hunter. Antoine is eager to learn about hunting, but the lesson he learns from the wise older man is not at all what he had expected: Antoine is left with a profound reverence for life. The film is based on Jacques Godbout’s book Une leçon de chasse, which was nominated for a 1997 Governor General's Award for children's literature.
Ages 15 to 18
Arts Education - Visual Arts
English Language Arts - CanLit
Media Education - Film Animation
Media Education - Film and Video Production
Read “The End of Pinky” and address how the adaptation remained true to the original and where the script diverges from Heather O’Neill’s text. If you had to produce an animated version of a short story, which one would you option the rights for? Explain why. Create a storyboard for a short story that your class has studied. Present the storyboards as if you were pitching a project to a major film studio.