The Academy Awards are this weekend. One of the awards that doesn’t get as much media attention is Animated Short Film. These are the nominees this year, one of which I posted about in October.
Short of the Week is a collection of short films — from very short (2 or 3 minutes) to a bit longer (45 minutes or so).
In the About page they say,
“We believe in the power of stories. Stories were our first way of passing on knowledge. From tales around a cave fire to dramatic theater to virtual reality experiences, great stories have shaped our culture.”
You can browse in several ways, including the channels (Animation, SciFi, Horror, Documentary, Comedy, Drama), by genre, topic and style (see below) and also by country and collection.
Some of the shorts I have watched and thought were ripe for contemplation and discussion — and one was just plain charming:
“3 + 1” (in French with English subtitles) — Comedy
“Rosa: These Storms” (in Spanish with English subtitles) — Documentary
“Eggplant” — Drama
Here is an interview with the creators of the site: “Andrew S. Allen and Jason Sondhi on the Relaunch of Short of the Week” (from Filmmaker)
Another related article: “Why Short Films Are Still Thriving” (from the Atlantic)
This short video shows some examples of how Pixar movies are translated and adapted for international audiences. My favorite is exchanging broccoli for green peppers in the Japanese version of “Inside Out” because Japanese kids tend to dislike green peppers about as much as American kids hate broccoli. The video doesn’t mention that the Japanese title of that movie is “Inside Head”. Which sounds to me like what they might use for the title of “Being John Malkovich”. Which is actually titled “Malkovich’s Hole” in Japan. Yikes.
Here’s a post from 2014 about movie titles and translation.
And if you haven’t guessed what “going down the rabbit hole” means from context, here’s the definition and the literary reference.
This is a reminder about what school (and work) often becomes … and what it can be if we encourage more creativity.
It also reminds me a lot of the movie “Pleasantville”. The metaphor is different, but there are similarities in the use of color. If you haven’t seen this movie, you really should. The Japanese title is 「カラー・オブ・ハート」and it stars Tobey Maguire, a few years before he was Spiderman. Here’s the trailer. Fans of the “Fast and Furious” series (Japanese title: 「ワイルド・スピード」may recognize Paul Walker, too.
Pixar in a Box is free lesson series of videos and activities from Khan Academy about storytelling and making animated videos. Here’s the Introduction to Storytelling video:
If this interests you, go back and start with the introduction video to this lesson series on the Khan Academy site. These videos have transcripts, to help your listening comprehension.
This is a free course, and you don’t have to sign up to just enjoy it, but if you want to save your progress, sign up.
If you’re unfamiliar with Khan Academy, here’s Salman Khan’s TED Talk from several years ago, when the organization was just starting out: