This selection of short films features classics like The Cat Came Back along with newer releases like the award-winning Hedgehog’s Home. The long winter months provide us with a perfect time to introduce children to new stories, and these films do just that. There are adventures in the animal world and tales from the spirit world—just the right mix to entertain and enchant children of all ages.
Winner of over 35 international awards, Hedgehog's Home is an animated film by Eva Cvijanović. Based on the classic story by Branko Ćopić, a writer from the former Yugoslavia, it is a warm and universal tale that reminds us there truly is no place like home.
In The Mountain of SGaana, Haida filmmaker Christopher Auchter spins a magical tale of a young man who is stolen away to the spirit world, and the young woman who rescues him. The film brilliantly combines traditional animation with formal elements of Haida art, and is based on a story inspired by a old Haida fable.
During the 2010 Wintercity Festival in Toronto, these animated shorts, created by NFB animators with Toronto youth, were shown on screens across the city.
This clip includes 14 shorts: Hockey Day in Toronto, Winter Fun and Snowman Madness (Avondale Alternative School); Penguin Fort, WinterCity 2010 and Skating Buddies (St. Jane Frances Catholic School); Snow Day! (Alban's Boys and Girls Club); The Best Snow Sculpture (Lakeshore Arts); Battle of the Seasons, Snowman Jam!, Snowball Success, WinterCity Magic, What Friends are For and A WinterCity Dream Come True (Mary Ward Catholic Secondary School).
A variation on a fable by Aesop ("The Lion and the Mouse") in which a mouse aids a mighty lion who had once spared his life. This children's film casts real animals – with a big brown bear in the role of the lion, and proves that little friends can prove to be great friends indeed.
In this children’s film, a white mouse cavorts about the forest, mostly on the back of a bumbling black bear, creating such a stir that other forest creatures (a deer, a tortoise, a hawk and a hound) have to put a stop to it. Animals speak with human voices and “act” out their parts.
This short fiction film about a young boy torn between conflicting loyalties is resolved with humour and wisdom. Sunday, 2 o'clock, is zero hour for Gaston. He must be in two places at once: performing at a music recital and playing hockey with his teammates. What is Gaston to do?
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.
Colour cut-out animation inspired by the shape of snowflakes and touched with the airy magic of these fragile designs. While music tinkles invitingly, snowflakes roll and whirl, pulse and glitter, shining with the many hues of twinkling lights. Made without words, this is a joyous film to please the fancy and captivate eye and ear.
This Oscar®-nominated animated short is a magical tale about life as seen through the eyes of a child. In keeping with their Sunday tradition, after mass a family flocks to grandma and grandpa’s house, where the chaotic discussion soon begins to resemble a raucous gathering of crows on power lines. The local factory has shut its doors and, naturally, the adults can’t stop fretting about their money woes. On this particular grey Sunday, a young boy drops a coin on some nearby train tracks out of sheer boredom. Picking the coin up after a train has run over it, he discovers to his astonishment that an amazing transformation has taken place.
In this short animation, a polar bear must try his luck finding a job in the big city when the last of his Arctic ice environment disappears. It’s hard fitting into the human world, however, so this bear finds a more creative solution to his predicament.
This film was made as part of the 8th edition of the NFB's Hothouse apprenticeship.
This hilarious Oscar®-nominated animation is based on the century-old folk song of the same name. Old Mr. Johnson makes increasingly manic attempts to rid himself of a little yellow cat that just won't stay away... Also won the 1989 Genie Award for best animated short film.
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In this animated short, Sleeping Betty is stuck in bed, victim to a strange bout of narcolepsy. The King calls on his subjects to rescue her and they all respond to the call: Uncle Henry VIII, Aunt Victoria, an oddly emotional alien, a funky witch and a handsome prince. But will a kiss really be enough to wake the sleeping princess? The film, drawn in ink, is a classic example of the anachronistic and playful world of Claude Cloutier.