Annecy 2013 – Day 5

I’m absolutely devastated that I missed Bill Plympton’s talk on Cheatin’ this morning. This was due to excess alcohol consumption last night. Poor form on my part. On a more positive note, I did manage to drag myself out of bed in the afternoon and saw a couple of feature films.

First up was Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return, which is playing in competition this year. This movie had some really great voice talent (Patric Stewart, Dan Akroyd, Hugh Dancy), so I figured it would be at the very least a half decent movie. Unfortunately I was wrong…

I almost fell asleep twice during Legends of Oz. It was really boring. Here’s the deal – the Scarecrow, Tin Man and the Lion suck Dorothy up into a rainbow and bring her back to Oz. Years have passed in Oz but for Dorothy it was just yesterday when she was there last. A new villain, The Jester, is taking over the land and apparently the only person who can stop him is Dorothy. As the Scarecrow, Tin Man and the Lion are bringing her back, they are overrun by flying monkeys and instead of bringing her to Emerald City, the rainbow machine dumps Dorothy in the middle of Oz. Most of the movie involves Dorothy traveling to the Emerald City, and meeting some strange characters along the way (sound familiar?).

The animation in this movie was pretty good, I just really wish they had tried to do something different instead of sticking to the same formula of the first movie. Also, for some reason I never really warmed to Dorothy and as such never really cared what happened to her. Maybe if you’re a 7-year-old girl this might be an entertaining movie. I don’t know. What I do know is that, I’m sorry to say, it wasn’t even close to entertaining for me.

Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s ReturnLegends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return

After Legends of Oz, it was straight off the Decavision for a bit of anime. I really liked Sakasama no Patema. The film is about a young girl called Patema who falls down a hole and ends up in an upside-down world. The new world is a kind of Orwellian society where they believe that “Inverts” (the upside down people) are evil and were sucked into the sky by God. In the new world Patema meets a boy called Age, who quickly realises that Patema is anything but evil and that perhaps there’s more to this than meets the eye. Naturally, there is, and as they try to escape the evil ruler of Age’s world he and Patema discover the truth about what happened to the Inverts.

This was a great movie. It was interesting, both visually and from a story point of view. The mix of 3D for the backgrounds and cell animation for the characters really worked. I even thought the music was great. This definitely gets a big thumbs up from me and I am keen to see more from director Yasuhiro Yoshiura.

Sakasama no PatemaSakasama no Patema

Tomorrow is the last day of the festival, and as much as I’m having a great time, I’m starting to get a little tired. I even bowed out of the Annecy Rejects party in favour of an early night. Hopefully I can hold it together for the awards ceremony tomorrow night and the closing party.