A legend from India, interpreted by a filmmaker from that country. It is a story of gods and men, of suns and moons and Earth, interpreted with an animation style and a richness of colour and design as arresting to the eye as the story and the music are to the ear. Sometimes the illustrations are painted on cells, sometimes the figures are cut-outs moving across shining backgrounds, but always the pace is gentle, inevitable.
The NFB's 51st Oscar®-nominated film.
In this short animation film, a magnificent bird performs for the Emperor inside a glittering palace. Its plumage is a blaze of colour. A blackbird, watching enviously, strives to acquire what he so desperately covets, only to discover that a golden cage can’t compete with the open skies.
Borrowing from classical mythology, this very short film illustrates the story of Syrinx, the nymph who attempts to escape the goat-god Pan’s amorous advances by fleeing to a nearby river for help, only to be transformed into hollow reeds. Syrinx is the first film by Ryan Larkin, an Oscar®-nominated director who began his animation career in Norman McLaren’s student group. The technique employed is charcoal sketches on paper; the accompanying music is Claude Debussy’s “Syrinx” for solo flute.
This short animation artfully revisits the Greek myth of Icarus. The son of the master craftsman Daedalus, creator of the Labyrinth, Icarus attempts to escape the island of Crete by means of a pair of wings constructed by his father. Upon receiving these wings, made from feathers and wax, he is told to fly neither too low, where the sea’s dampness would clog his wings, nor too high, where the sun’s heat would melt them -- precious advice the hubristic Icarus tragically won’t heed.
This animated short film attempts to answer the eternal questions, What is dying? and How does it feel? Based on recent studies, case histories and some of the ancient myths, the afterlife state is portrayed as an awesome but methodical working-out of all the individual's past experiences. Film without words.
“Deyzangeroo” is a ritual performed in the Iranian port city of Bushehr. Influenced by the city’s colonial rule by the British and Portuguese, and the African slaves that followed, it is imbued with the terror and magic of the lunar eclipse. The ritual is believed to ward off evil spirits and take back the moon. It works every time. Directed by Iranian-Canadian filmmaker Ehsan Gharib, this animated short features hand-painted animation, time-lapse photography, trick photography using mirrors, and the haunting music of virtuoso percussionist Habib Meftah Boushehri.
Inspired by the people and landscape of Colombia's Banana Zone, Nobel Prize-winning author Gabriel Garcia Marquez created the Buendia family and the village of Macondo, placing them at the centre of his acclaimed novel, One Hundred Years of Solitude. Among the events described in Marquez' novel is the 1928 Banana Strike and the subsequent murder of 3 000 banana workers by the Colombian Army. My Macondo sets out in search of Marquez' legendary village and the truth behind that incident. Is the fictional village of Macondo a real place with a real history? Did the slaughter of the strikers actually take place? In trying to answer these questions, My Macondo explores the nature of history and myth, and poses questions about fiction and truth.
This animated short is a visual representation of Goethe's poem, The ErlKing that uses sand-on-glass animation set to the music of Franz Schubert. The moving images, resembling woodcuts, capture the haunting, nightmarish quality of the tale of the ErlKing who steals and kills a little boy.
This animated short by Paul Driessen tells the story of a boy with an overactive imagination. The young protagonist, bored with his lot, imagines a diabolic and dangerous life of adventure. But when he finally finds himself facing a real-life drama, the mundane life that he always wanted to escape is what he wishes to recapture.
This gentle tale about mortality works in subliminal ways. When an old man is visited by Death at his home in the meadows, he has to delve deep to secure more time for himself. Does he have the strength to find the answers he needs? Can we negotiate our time on earth? How do we reconcile our mortal fate? A lyrical look at a reality as old as humanity, yet as young as today. Based on a story by Richard Kennedy.
This animation short is an adaptation of Michel Tremblay's short story "The Devil and the Mushroom." A tale of supernatural power, greed and violence, it involves a sinister stranger who single-handedly transforms a quiet village into the scene of a phantasmagoric nightmare.