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The Oscars are coming up in two short weeks. That’s pretty large news around these parts. But we’ve got nothing against short news. Specifically animated shorts.
We’d probably get in a lot of trouble if we showed you video for all of the Academy Award nominees for Best Picture, but now we can watch all of the nominees for Best Animated Short Film. As you can probably guess, these are some top quality shorts, and are worth the combined 36 minutes or so that it would take to watch them in all of their dialogue-free glory. After all, you’ll need a reason to scream at the TV when your favorite one wins or loses.
First up is Head Over Heels, a delightfully warm and quirky reminder of how much we can take our significant others for granted. Timothy Reckart’s stop-motion is smooth and fluid, especially given his unique setting of a floating house with two separate centers of gravity. It’s gorgeous animation and timeless tale that will make a lot of people say, “Awww.”
But Head Over Heels could lose to the juggernaut that is Disney with their entry, Paperman. Not just because it’s Disney, but because it’s just as beautiful, trading a CGI aesthetic with something much more Golden Age, and telling just as lovely a story, this time of lovers meant to be rather than lovers long together. Chances are you’ve seen it or heard of director John Kahrs’ reverence to the power of paper over technology, as it’s taken the Internet by storm over the last couple of weeks.
And now for something completely delicious. PES, real name Adam Pesapane, presents the shortest short ever nominated for an Academy Award, Fresh Guacamole, and you’ll be all the more rewarded for knowing nothing about it beyond the fact that the animator’s inspiration was thinking a grenade looks like an avocado.
The animation in Minkyu Lee’s Adam and Dog, a combination of animation over painted backdrops, is positively breathtaking. Essentially, it’s a meeting and subsequent friendship between a scrappy dog and Adam, whose nudity and the fact that he’s the only human around (for a while) don’t leave too much to the imagination as far as the setting. It’s simple, effective and moving.
And last, but not least is David Silverman’s The Longest Daycare, starring none other than Maggie Simpson and Gerald Samson, that damned baby with the unibrow. For his short, Silverman went back to a Golden Age himself, back to great Simpsons sight gags and movie references.
Tell us which one was your favorite in the comments and find out who wins on February 24!
(Thanks to Bleeding Cool for tipping us off to these)