“Mike Judge and Don Hertzfeldt present a dozen eye-popping shorts. Tops are Bill Plympton's wildly funny 2-D Guard Dog and Hertzfeldt's evolutionary tale The Meaning of Life, which teems with as many as 50 squiggly line-drawn figures per frame. In The F.E.D.S., Jen Drummond uses the rotoscoping software employed in Waking Life to capture some quirky grocery-store food demos, while Australia's Peter Cornwell refines clay animation to expose a hospital's dark underbelly in Ward 13. Over too soon, a stop-motion microtoon by PES called Fireworks is a festive salute choreographed with penny candies.” –Andrea Gronvall, Chicago Reader
“Animation fans, no matter their stylistic preference (computer-generated, claymation, old-school hand-drawn), will find much to sate their appetites in this collection of award-winning and critically acclaimed work. There’s not a dud in the bunch. Highlights include Peter Cornwell’s manic, inspired claymation work in Ward 13, in which a badly wounded hospital patient has to fight off a staff of psychotic doctors and nurses who are using the infirm as guinea pigs. Not only is the film’s craftsmanship topnotch, the script has tension. Bill Plympton is as wickedly on point as ever in Guard Dog, taking the viewer inside the demented mind of an overprotective canine who sees hilariously rendered danger in the birds, squirrels and butterflies encountered on his daily walk with his owner. Jen Drummond’s F.E.D.S., created in the same rotoscoped manner as Richard Linklater’s Waking Life (which she worked on), is a droll documentary on the folk who push food samples in supermarkets. But it’s Jonathan Nix’s sweet Hello that steals the spotlight, with its story of a boom-box boy trying to win the heart of the techno-girl down the hall. Through clever stitching together of imagery and music, Nix crafts a pungent essay on technology, generational gaps and emotional courage into a grin-inducing love story.” –Ernest Hardy, LA Weekly
Mike Judge and Don Hertzfeldt present: THE ANIMATION SHOW
The 2005 edition of THE ANIMATION SHOW is an extraordinary and diverse all-new collection of the best animation from around the world! Co-created by Mike Judge and Don Hertzfeldt, the Animation Show continues to annually bring these rarely seen short films into more movie theaters than anyone in history.
Celebrating animation from all walks of life, the 2005 program has gathered everything from groundbreaking new indie films ("FEDS", “Pan With Us") to the very latest in CGI wizardry ("Rock Fish", “Fallen Art”). This year's headliners include Bill Plympton's hilarious "Guard Dog" and Don Hertzfeldt's long-awaited epic, "The Meaning of Life".
As animation continues to be plagued as the single most misunderstood film medium, the animated short film is sadly undervalued and underexposed in American cinema, despite widespread appreciation throughout the rest of the world. With luck, popular animated shorts may see some manner of very limited theatrical play, but are all too often relegated to only being found in chopped-up form on television, or worse, are only exhibited on the internet. The first theatrical animation festival was born in 1976 with the launch of the Fantastic Animation Festival. This was the first show to create the now-universal "program on a flyer" and the first to receive a first-run 35mm theatrical release. The Fantastic Festival's popularity helped pave the way shortly thereafter for similar programs throughout the 80s and 90s, including Spike and Mike's Festival of Animation, the Tournee of Animation, and several others that came and went with varying success. Every year, The Animation Show promises to put animated short films into more theaters than any other animation festival in American history. We aim to finally give these filmmakers the wide exposure their work deserves and to share these short masterpieces on the big screen, where they belong.