The Animation Show: Volumes 1 & 2 (Box set)
B- Sound: C Extras: C+ Shorts: B-
more influential and popular animators of the past decade, Mike Judge and Don
Hertzfeldt, have teamed up to put together one of the most insane, entertaining,
and overall enjoyable animation collections in recent DVD history. This plethora of every brand of animation
including classic pen and paper, CGI, Claymation, and much more pulls audiences
in with its excellent uniqueness. With
animated short presentations from over 21 artists this collection kept this
viewer captivated and entertained until the end. Today animated shorts are sadly not seen very
often, having gone the way of the 8-track tape, seen by studios to not be
profitable or necessary. The truth of
the matter is that it is much harder to put a true, inspirational, and
entertaining message in a 5-10 minute short then it is to say in today’s 90
minute to 3 hour films. With the
plethora of talent flowing through this set it is no surprise that this set is
outstanding. Though some shorts are better than others, it is always
interesting to see the array of different mindsets animators personify and to
which arena they place their creative talents.
Judge is mainly known for his gruesome duo Beavis
and Butt-head as well as his tightly wound Texans on King of the Hill. Don
Hertzfeldt may be a name that many are not familiar with, but has found success
with his ‘Rejected’ cartoon short series.
So if you hear people spouting out nonsensical comments such as “My
spoooon is too big” or “My anus is bleeding,” that is homage to the talented
and crazy Don Hertzfeldt. Together
(along with the help of select others) both Judge and Hertzfeldt have decided to
present audiences with a plethora of animated short entertainment.
shocking. Some are sad. Some are down right nonsense, but one thing
is for sure they are all creative.
Overall, the set consists of thirty-one animated shorts. On Volume One, Don Hertzfeldt takes it upon
himself to set-up a platform for the DVD having created three new shorts
(‘Welcome to the Show,’ ‘Intermission in the Third Dimension,’ and ‘The End of
the Show’) to bookend the compilation nicely.
Mike Judge lends some of his early art attempts to this DVD set, some
being more entertaining then others. The
more interesting aspect of Mike Judge’s contribution is the noticeable parallel
of his early art to his future endeavors, such as a short entitled ‘Office
Space starring Milton’ and an array of characters resembling those of Beavis
and Butthead. Many great shorts exist on
this animated compilation, to name a few of this reviewer’s favorites (other
than Judge’s and Hertzfeldt’s works):
separate animated shorts (using Claymation) from Australian artist Adam Elliot,
who takes a dark humor twist on family life, even stating that he mainly draws
his ideas autobiographically. These
shorts are a must see from this Oscar winning artist.
Fifty Percent Grey
A man who
explores the after life and all it has to offer. Another morbid but somewhat humorous twist on
an interesting subject of what happens in death.
this epic hospital, monster battle this reviewer could only say ‘My God this is
cool!’ This Claymation short (probably
one of the longer ones) follows a man as he ambitiously attempts to escape a
hospital that has unforeseen intentions beyond helping him. This short is amazing, plain and simple.
technical aspects of this set are surprising.
The picture is quite consistent from short to short being clear and
crisp; realizing that many of the shorts are meant to have a rough look. The picture presentations vary according to
how the original short was presented, but most remain color balanced and
overall good. The Sound is a simple
Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo that is adequate and does not detract, but does have
issues of balance this reviewer having to turn up and down the volume based on
each shorts needs. The extras are
plentiful on this set, though not always entertaining.
extra that stands out is a featurette entitled ‘100 Years of Animated Shorts,’
which goes through the long life and history of animated shorts. Other extras include "Mt.
Head" galleries of concept art and character design, "The
Cathedral" motion tests, animatics, and production art, "The
Rocks" production photo album, "La course a l'abime"
storyboard-to-scene comparison, "The Feds" recipe for animating,
"Fallen art" creating and animating characters, Bonus film
by Chel White: "A Painful Glimpse into My Writing Process",
"Magda" the making of piece and Bonus film by Pes: "Kaboom"
with the making of "Kaboom".
end, a great set with great art….Go buy!
- Michael P Dougherty II