Friday, December 16, 2011

Fantastic Short Film Friday - The Employment (animated)

And we are back with another installment in our Fantastic Short Film Friday series, as we continue to showcase films released in the "lesser" known form of cinema- the short film.

It's animation time again, and I have for you this week a short that's both fun and reflective (do those 2 things go together?). Watching this short, you realize how wide the world of animation is and how different animation outside of the US can be (and in a lot of ways more mature in their themes). Here is a 7-minute Argentinian animated short called, The Employment from filmmaker, Santiago 'Bou' Grasso. The animation style is very European in execution, reminiscent of the work from the French studio Cube Creative whose short Jean-Francois I've previously shared here on the site. The story, the facial expressions, everything is told with a detached deadpan style of humor that makes the story so enjoyable.

Here's the set-up: A man wakes up and starts his day as usual. He turns on his room light and bam you realize this isn't our world. All throughout the city landscape, from the streets to the cabs to the office building, we find people performing menial tasks as if they’re living furniture. People pose as coat racks, hold bathroom mirrors, and give piggy-back rides down the streets. To give anything more would spoil what the filmmakers are trying to say here. Let's just say, I can relate to the feelings of joylessness that everyday life can sometimes bring.

This film is a wonderful look at what international animation can bring that we don't generally get with animation from the US. It's thoughtful, a bit morose and beautifully animated with very little soundtrack and no dialogue. It's a simple story about everyday humans acting like they're in a Flintstones cartoon, doing the menial work in place of technology and yeah, this 7-minute short says more about the human condition then many feature length films.

Check this out if you want to see some wonderful international animation. Check this out if you enjoy thoughtful, meditative works that remind of the whimsical comedic pain of a Woody Allen film. Enjoy this weeks dose of short form goodness in, The Employment.

El Empleo / The Employment from opusBou on Vimeo.

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