In honor of Memorial Day, we present Christopher Dow’s lively history and critical analysis of World War II’s favorite cartoon fuck-up, Private Snafu, which appeared originally in Bright Lights in[…]
Not since Gene Wilder made nice with his monster in Young Frankenstein or the cannibal mutant got the girl (Tucker and Dale vs. Evil) have our deformed horror staples been so effectively pulled from their scar tissue and replaced with loving stitches. We needed these films, like a salve to our nation’s red vs. blue infection.
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PgniqcgdFo] Great news for animation buffs! Minimalist animation genius, Gene Deitch, creator of Tom Terrific, The Juggler of Our Lady, Munroe, Sick Sick Sidney, and many others will appear for[…]
Hand-drawn animation, once the mainstay of Disney and other studios that created “cartoons” for popular consumption, is becoming something of a lost art. Audiences seem to prefer Pixar-style CGI. Disney[…]
The Avatar hype continues. There was a front-page piece in the L.A. Times today, whining – for lack of a better word – about how “unlike the great majority of best[…]
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXdHTP7omZk] Shed a tear for the creator of gentle Gumby. Art Clokey was a disciple of avant-garde film theorist, Slavko Vorkapich, under whose mentorship Clokey filmed Gumbasia (above) and other[…]
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S02HI-nzAyo] Long before Terminators 1, 2, 3, and 4, a revolt of the machines was successfully quelled by the Great Green Hope otherwise known as Gumby, aided by his four-legged[…]
“Tex Avery — Arch Radicalizer of the Hollywood Cartoon” consists of slightly glorified program notes that I wrote for the Zagreb Animation Festival in 1978. It was a big hit in the Old World and was published in Russian, Croatian, Dutch, French, and Italian (twice), but the only time it ever got printed in English was by Gary Morris in his cinephile-revered rag called Bright Lights. Now, thirty-one years later, Mr. Morris has decided to reissue the piece online. I have forgone attempting any actual rewrites, though, because the observations have not dated especially egregiously, except for my discussion of the then-current state of cartoon criticism. The biggest faux pas contained herein is my overconfident assertion that cel animation would inevitably dominate the future of the medium (oops – maybe not), as CGI was then but a distant pixel on the historical horizon.
Every one of Henry Selick’s four feature films to date has dealt with alternate realities. In the Tim Burton-produced The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), the ghoulish Jack Skellington finds a[…]
There was Alice, who journeyed to Wonderland and through the looking glass, Dorothy Gale, who was carried on a cyclone to Oz, and Wendy Darling, who accompanied lost boy Peter[…]
I’ve survived the family Xmas, and what saved us was the power of the movies. This got me to thinking about all the best dysfunctional family holiday films–I don’t mean[…]