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Village of Idiots

Village of Idiots

| 12 min

Based on a Jewish folk tale adapted by playwright John Lazarus, this animated short tells the story of Shmendrik, a simpleton living in a small Polish village. Weary of daily life in his native Chelm, Shmendrik sets out on a quest for knowledge that brings him to a new Chelm, a place eerily reminiscent of his old Chelm. An amusing take on our tendency to romanticize what we don't have.

  • director
    Eugene Fedorenko
    Rose Newlove
  • animation
    Eugene Fedorenko
    Rose Newlove
  • writer
    John Lazarus
  • narrator
    Nicholas Rice
  • voice
    Hindy Nosek-Abelson
    Yank Azman
    Gloria Block
    Jack Newman
  • dialogue
    Jack Newman
  • voice recording
    Greg Shim
  • original music
    Normand Roger
  • musical arrangement
    Normand Roger
  • music performer
    Alain Cazes
    Denis Chartrand
    Michel Dupire
    Normand Roger
    Patrick Vetter
  • sound editing
    Jean-Baptiste Roger
  • foley
    Andy Malcolm
  • foley recording
    Tony Van den Akker
  • re-recording
    Serge Boivin
    Geoffrey Mitchell
  • post-production coordinator
    Éric Barbeau
  • program administrator
    Ed Barreveld
    Ida Di Fruscia
    Gisèle Guilbault
  • producer
    Michael Scott
    David Verrall
  • executive producer
    John Spotton
    John Taylor
    Dennis Murphy
    Gerry Flahive
    Barrie Angus McLean
    David Verrall


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Ages 9 to 18

Study Guide - Guide 1

English Language Arts - Children's Stories/Fables
Media Education - Film Animation

Warnings: Be mindful of certain anti-Semitic stereotypes that have been portrayed through art in the 20th century.

Based on a Yiddish folk tale, this animated short tells the story of Shmendrik, who lives in the Polish village of Chelm. Discussion and activities will vary depending on the age of the viewer. Some viewers may need to fully discuss what happened in the story, whereas other viewers will be ready to compare this story to folk tales from other cultures. Possible topics to discuss include: Why do stories sometimes make characters out to be complete fools? Is Shmendrik right in thinking that all villages are essentially the same?

Village of Idiots
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