1. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I miss the West. :(

    Discussion in 'Entertainment' started by Wreybies, May 13, 2014.

    Not that I haven't enjoyed watching the anime invasion start, almost unknown, in the late 70's and early 80's and into the explosion it is today, but I miss Western, non-Disney animation filled with stories and mythologies I understand and relate to on a primordial level, without having to look things up or have things explained to me. :(

     
  2. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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  3. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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  4. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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  5. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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  6. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    16389__shrek_l.jpg
     
  7. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    Western and primordial? hmmm.....

     
  8. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    La Planète Sauvage is an excellent film. :) The aesthetic of the animation is so stark and yet so rich all at once. Though you've struck a chord with this film, have no doubt ;), what I meant by primordial was not so much that the film be primordial in tone or nature, as this film is, but that its western origin shares a cultural history with me. I watch it and I understand because these are the myths and the symbols that I know and understand because they've been with me since the cradle. In a western animation, no one has to explain to me the cultural and historical significance of a man cutting off his queue, and even when I know what that means (and I do) that academic knowledge isn't the same as gut knowledge. That's why I miss the western animation tradition that was overshadowed in the 80's by anime, and left with only Disney and Disney Clone studios, at least here in America. We used to have animated films with grit and edge and now all we have is princesses with magic ice power learning to feel empowered by running away...
     
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  9. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    I blame Ralph Bakshi for this. He set out to make cartoons for adults and failed so spectacularly (because he's an extremely contemptuous person) that major studios only had to look at Cool World to find hundreds of good reasons not to green light animation for adults.

    But Cartoon Network is bringing a lot of that back with their Adult Swim line up. The idea that cartoons are funny will probably never go away, but shows like The Venture Brothers and The Boondocks have plenty of grit, are very dynamically animated, and might signal a bright new future for cartoon films.
     
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  10. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I freakin' love Venture Brothers. :) I don't want to live in a world that doesn't include Dean Venture goth dancing in Shallow Gravy's Jacket video. ;)

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    @Jack Asher I don't think it's fair to blaim Bakshi for trying, and trying for 30 years: he fought a great deal for Fritz when Warner wanted all sex, violence and politics out of it - imagine Fritz the Cat as a kiddy cartoon. And his usage of rotoscoping gave some incredibly engaging scenes, however unappealing they might seem to majority of audiences. Granted, he worked with some incredibly lame screenplays (Cool World is unwatchable even if you cut out everything but Kim Basinger :p)

    I'd be more inclined to call that problem cultural than to put any blame on any single man: for example, I remember a discussion on this very forum where people were overwhelmingly against anthropomorphized animals in fiction for adults, seeing it as a "gimmick for children" (despite an abundance of evidence against such a narrow view). Or, when talking about animated features, when Studio Ghibli's Princess Mononoke premiered in my country (the US version, 6 years too late I think), it was exclusively run in the afternoons, for children, and the TV trailer's voiceover explicitly called for "Children! Bring your friends and parents to help the beautiful Princess fight the evil forest spirits!" You know something is wrong when audience starts leaving the film in the middle, crying (great way to give a 4-years-old nightmares for years to come :p)

    That said, anyone remember this one? Makes me cry even today:
     
  12. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Astérix and Obélix animations are one of my favorites.

    I also really liked these two:


     
  13. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    I do blame him because he's so fucking awful at animation. Fundamentally he cuts corners where ever he can, shooting on 3s or 4s instead of 2s, using the same color pallet on multiple characters. In Cool World instead of animating the foreground he just painted some flats to look like they were animated and it looked terrible. In Fritz the Cat there's an entire 2 minute scene where Fritz shirt disappears.

    And his lip synching. I worked with students who had literally never done lip synching before who could do it better than Bakshi.
     
  14. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    @Jack Asher hm, Baksi deserves another thread :)

    You are absolutely right - but if you compare Fritz budget of $800.000 with, for example $4mil budget for Aristocats or Rescuers...and those are some of the lamest Disney animations... Anyway, '70s were pretty rough on animation in general - except for this one: :)
     
  15. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters had a smaller budget and is arguably a better movie.

    Just skimming through the wiki article I found this on Fritz,
    You might understand this to be a balls-out retarded way of doing things. Even the Nine Old Men did scores of pencil tests, and you think somehow that some minimum wage slob is going to be better then them?
     
  16. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    @Jack Asher I don't see how Aqua Teen Hunger Force compares with Fritz - both are not for kids, that's the only thing they have in common. Which one is better comes down to personal preference.

    Again, in Bakshi's defence: www.michaelbarrier.com/Funnyworld/FritzPartOne/FritzOne.htm
     
  17. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    You and I have a different meaning of defense, because what I read was, "Bakshi took a stupid risk, cut corners and made the end result look like crap."

    He's not fucking Bill Plympton, when he shoots on 4s it looks like crap. If your movie is being shot on anything other then 2s then it is not movie quality.
     
  18. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    @Jack Asher I can't find that partical citation in the text, sorry :)

    We just have to agree that we disagree then: I'm quite certain, based on what I've read, that, at least in his starting days (utter disasters such as Cool World aside) Bakshi was quite aware he can't shoot for what you call movie quality and the choice made was exactly not to go in that direction. An intended mess is still a mess, I agree with you - but it's also an intention. And let's not talk here about the redeeming quality of artistic intention, or nostalgic gaze, or camp... or the dance on the edge of kitch, which is, for me, what characterizes every single Bakshi features.

    That said:

     
  19. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    I'll take the time to familiarize you with Bill Plympton, who is kind of a minor deity in animation circles. Aside from being incredibly talented he's devoted to his craft. All of the profits that he makes from one cartoon (which are usually earned by winning the hell out of some animation contests) he uses to fund the next cartoon.

    The reason I bring him up is he cuts the same corners that Bakshi does. I had an argument with a friend over what he shot on and we got up and asked him at Comic Con International. He said he shoots on 4s, 5s, even 6s. He uses traditional techniques where he can, which in some cases means just photographing his pencil tests on a lunchbox!

    And he is so-ever-much fucking better at it then Bakshi is or can be.



    EDIT: I also feel like we're dancing around the fact that Bakshi is a notorious coke head, and that should be mentioned at some point.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2014
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  20. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    Where does Don Bluth fit into the this? Because Titan AE was awesome.
     
  21. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Titan AE is awesome! :agreed: but if anything, it's presence, the fact it exists makes me scream even louder as to where is the rest of the tradition? Fox Animation did Titan AE, Anastasia and The Prince of Egypt, and that's all I can find (maybe there are more, can't find them). And though the tone of Titan AE is much rougher and grittier than anything Disney would put out, there is a definite feeling in their films that they're after the same "family friendly" audience. I wouldn't exactly put them on par with other Disney Clone studios, but they're close.
     
  22. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    @Jack Asher
    that's an understatement if there ever was one :D

    Again, I'm not convinced that drawing comparisons between contemporary indie scene and that '70s shows is appropriate - but I'm glad you mentioned Plympton, the true hero of do-it-yourself brilliance :)
    Great little something about him: :)


    And freakin Titan AE, I couldn't wait for that film. And it came out just about the time I was slowly loosing interest in both sci-fi as a pop genre and classic animation as medium of mass culture. And speaking of Bluth: isn't "There Are No Cats in America" just the most ironic piece of cinema aimed for kids? I remember my mother struggling to explain Jew Mice to me (aged 5 and a half ) :)

     

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