One Soft and One Hard Shorts

October 22, 2009

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More often than not, European animated shorts are too ‘weird’ for me to enjoy. Still, there are some that captivates and moves me. Here are two of my favourite animated shorts, a masterpiece of storytelling that is Father and Daughter and a trippy mindfuck called Instinct. Wabisabi talked about them before in her old blog, but I suppose it won’t hurt to promote these gems here as well.

Both works are extremely powerful, but in different ways. One made me shed tears, while the other left me speechless. One is more relaxed in pacing/atmosphere and gradually creeps inside you, while the other is bizarre and confronting. I think they’re good examples of ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ approaches to anime I’ve talked about before here.

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6 Responses to “One Soft and One Hard Shorts”

  1. Gargron Says:

    Powerful indeed. The first one, at least. I watched many things, and have seen many sujets, but the turn of events in it was absolutely unexpected.

    And the Instinct is a bit difficult to understand, whether it were his and that other woman’s imaginations/dreams or real unnatural relationship with animals.

    Anyway, I can recommend you Les triplettes de Belleville, also a powerful but more comedian animation.

  2. gaguri Says:

    I think the french words at the end of Instinct was something like ‘so powerful is the force of nature’. I don’t think it was a dream, just that the reality and feelings he was going through at that moment with his pet is so bizarre and disturbing, it was only fitting to be depicted in an animated medium in such a way.

    And thanks for the recommendation, I will keep that in my mind =)

  3. 2DT Says:

    The first was good, tugged on the heart strings, but the subject matter was perhaps a bit typical. The second… wow. Very impressed.

    Thanks for sharing.

  4. gaguri Says:

    My pleasure.

  5. Shadowmage Says:

    Father and Daughter was a pleasant piece that was well animated, scored and presented, but it didn’t manage to penetrate my callous soul since such stories are exceptionally common.

    When I first started INSTINCT, I thought it was going to be some sort of thriller/horror due to the foreboding music and overall dark ambience. Then the guy kissed the cat and I knew what direction this was going. I’ve already seen this kind of presentation in Mind Game, but I like how everything was distorted since it fit well with the protagonists rather “twisted” taste.

    Anyways, unless this is endorsement of beastiality, a part of me says the topic was merely an exploitation of an unusual subject matter for the shock effect, and the intrigue that I felt was not generated by the piece itself but the context created by a gimmick. But then again, I’ve long come to accept and enjoy artistic pieces like this one not as an argument but merely an observation.

    Overall, nice finds.

  6. gaguri Says:

    Hmm I didn’t think such stories were really that exceptionally common. At least, not the way it presented it, was totally unique for me.

    As for Instinct, I don’t think it was an endoresment or exploitation. Disregarding whatever ‘message’ we may take from it (which may differ for different viewers), I thought it was fantastic in portraying ‘so powerful is the force of nature’. Perhaps the man could not help but have such strong desire to connect with the cat, but then we see that cat can not help but be just a cat, and being keep distractd by bird by her instinct, the man finds he can not properly connect with the cat even at the moment of his sexual climax. But it feels as if the man will continue this bizarre relationship with the cat, for we are helpless at the forces of our instinct.

    I also liked how the man must get away from city and escape to park, just like how the guys escaped into brokeback mountain, and girls formed emerald rimajon in simoun. Nice play of settings. Overall, a brilliant artistic piece of short for me.


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