Anime wins Oscar

by dm00

“Anime”, that’s Japanese animation, yes?


Kunio Kato’s (Fantasy Story, The Apple Incident, The Diary of Tortov Roddle) film La Maison en Petits Cubes won the Oscar for best animated short film this evening.

It’s a sweet little film about an old man remembering his life — as he swims down through the flooded layers of his house, at first chasing a dropped, favorite pipe, but then chasing the memories conjured by the abandoned rooms.

It’s not a surprising story, but it is well done, and manages to touch the viewer’s heart.


Like Kato’s earlier films, this one shares the appearance of being done on ancient paper (and shares his storybook imagery).  Unlike Kato’s earlier films, which take the form of separate chapters, often complete with turning pages or title-cards, this film is a single story around a single incident — though, of course, each room, deeper in the water, and deeper in the past, contains its own episode.

If you’ve liked Kato’s earlier films, you should definitely seek this one out.  Even if you didn’t care much for the slow pace and general artiness of the earlier films, you might enjoy this film.  I think Kato has improved his pacing.  For this viewer, it also helps that the film is a bit less surreal and more human.

5 Responses to “Anime wins Oscar”

  1. 1 21stcenturydigitalboy February 22, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    Ah, I came in to the room when this was getting handed out and immediately though the art looked familiar – of course it was Tortov Roddle I’d seen. I will most definitely seek this out.

  2. 2 Francisco February 24, 2009 at 8:24 pm

    Where can you buy this little film ?

  3. 3 Nanzu February 24, 2009 at 11:33 pm

    nice .. La Maison en Petits Cubes .. never heard before ..
    anyway i love anime

  4. 4 dm00 February 25, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    Francisco: I’ve heard that it may be available from iTunes, but I have not found it there.

    Magnolia Pictures is currently touring a collection of Oscar-nominated shorts around the US, and mention a DVD in the works (they have collected past Academy Award-nominated short films on DVD), so watch for it from them.

  1. 1 Junichi Yamamoto — sad robot in rubble/Hot blooded alien/Kobe & I « Drastic My Anime Blog Trackback on June 1, 2010 at 2:25 pm

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