SXSW Film Reviews

Animated Shorts

D: Various

Proof, if any were needed, that Disney's rumored recent decision to scrap its traditional cel animation facilities in favor of leaping full-bore into the digital fray might not be their best idea yet: Half of these 10 shorts use to grand effect old-school methods, including Aron Stienke's dreamy "Palo Alto, 1879" and Matthew Dills' "Lost in Found," which uses classic stop motion animation to bring to life a lovesick skeleton. On the digital tip, Austinite Lance Myers' "Subsidized Fate" tackles the connection between advertising and theft with sleek, Flash-animated visuals and Myers' usual less-is-more smarts. Allan Steele's "The Lester Show – Happy Hour" is a likely candidate for Spike & Mike's Sick & Twisted Festival of Animation, with its mangy dog-boy antihero and his talking fish-head friends, but it's also a lethally humorous sideswipe at a culture that allows mangy dog-boy antiheroes to run wild in the streets – or is it? Either way, Steele's lunacy is compelling.

(Alamo, March 20, 10pm)

"Subsidized Fate" received the SXSW Film 04 Special Jury Award for Animated Short.

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