Since I am unable to make it to the Academy Shorts, I am going to comment on why I think The Fly won the 1981 Academy award for animated shorts.Overall, the short animation is about 3 minutes long. It is a phenomenological type of animation being about a typical experience of a fly doing what he does best, pestering an individual in someones house. He begins flying outside and enters into a home where his destiny is soon to end. An individual in the house ends up swatting the fly killing it to be a part of their fly collection.I think this film won because of how impressive the drawing technique was. What I appreciated the most was how the sound paralleled the image. When the fly came to a halt the buzzing sound would stop as well. Although it was a silent (no dialogue) animation, it still managed to be humorous at the end when the individual was swatting the fly. Overall, the piece was well planned and structured.- Hannah Beckey
I think that the animation, "A Morning Stroll" will win, because of the diversity in animation techniques. I really enjoyed the film, because it depicted both an evolution in animation technique, as well as the passage of time. The film started off with simple line animations depicting a man walking through a city in the year 1959. He is amazed to see a chicken walking through the city and entering a house. The middle of the film switches to a more digital type of animation with another man walking through a modern day city in 2009. Again he sees the chicken and attempts to take a video of it, but gets distracted with a game on his phone. The last half of the animation depicts a post-apocalyptic world (2059) in which the man walking has become a zombie. He chases the chicken in hopes of being able to feed on it. Little did he know that that very chicken would lead to his demise. He continues to chase the chicken and ends up running into a door and his head explodes. The very last shot was the most interesting to me, because it depicted both styles of animation right next to each other. Through the diversity of shots, techniques, and overall intensity of the film, I feel that it will win.
Though I do not know what specific criteria winners are based on, I personally thought that the first film shown, "Dimanche/Sunday" by Patrick Doyon, was a very strong and well rounded piece. The animation was stylized and abstract, even simple in some places, but still retained a high level of polish and realized it's different elements well. I thought the piece made particularly good use of animation as a medium, showing the world through the eyes of a young child in it's abstraction. There was just enough of a story to hold my interest, even involving more advanced elements like foreshadowing into such a short piece. I also found the piece's use of sound to be quite effective, with the effects all sounding slightly stylized or abstract as well, matching the visual aesthetic nicely. Overall I found the piece to be well realized, without any glaring flaws, and would imagine it to be palatable to many tastes.
Of all the animated shorts nominated for an Oscar this year I think the one that i was most impressed with was Dimanche/Sunday from the National Film Board of Canada. This piece has a very unique aesthetic that I think really worked well in conveying the tone and mood of the narrative.I loved the dark humor in this piece, i thought there was the perfect amount of seriousness and playfulness. The main character was really intriguing he seemed to be at odds with his bleak community and family situation but he was finding ways to persevere and be imaginative. Even though this was my favorite I think that the other Canadian piece "Wild Life" will win because it has a more Oscar like quality and ere to it. The Pixar short La Luna could win as well because it's really empirically heart warming and cute, everyone loves Disney and Pixar.
I think "La Luna" has a very good chance of winning this category at the Oscars. Aside form it being a product of an major company, it is a story with a happy ending and which illustrates good morals for kids and adults. A boy, with his father and grandfather are in a boat in transit somewhere. Soon they introduce him to their line of work, shaping the moon. The moon has many fallen stars on it, and giant one lands on it. While the grandfather and father fight over how to tackle this problem, the boy immediately dives in and solves the problem. Though the animation style maybe a classic Disney/Pixar look, the style of the characters are completely unique to that story itself. Everything glowed between the stars and its characters. I enjoyed the ending of this short, because it felt complete its is narration of this coming of age adventure for this boy.
Something that I loved about the Oscar nominated animated shorts was that even at face value, they were a reflection of the countries from which they were produced. Canada commented upon the Canadian experience of vast spaces and the entangled frustration, the USA pushed 3D CGI and musical theatre values of hope and dreams, and the UK... awkward and charming, perhaps?I would like to see Dimanche/Sunday win in this category, partly due to how it deals with the mundane and death, and the subject of a child's perspective of the world. This animation was the story of a Canadian boy, his life, and witnessing death all around him. The film has a 2D animation aesthetic, fairly flat and simplistic, like a child's cartoon. The film has a very accessible aesthetic due to this, and guides the viewer gently into the morbid subject. This animation reminded me of the importance of animated IDEAS - this includes all the wonderful uses of the bizarre - the bear head moving, dream bubbles reinforcing characteristics, scale of the train and village emphasizing barrenness. This film is important as it uses animation to deal with a sensitive topic successfully. I found this film subtle and rich (unlike he Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore).