The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Project)

An ongoing survey of the Criterion Forum membership to create lists of the best films of each decade and genre.
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matrixschmatrix
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 11:26 pm

The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Project)

#1 Post by matrixschmatrix » Tue Jan 01, 2013 12:30 pm

BALLOTS ARE DUE BY THE END OF THE DAY JULY 6, 2013

Hooray, we will be a bunch of adults watching cartoons! What could be better. Everyone's welcome to post on this one, and please feel free to invite friends and family to contribute.

Please PM me your list of what you believe are the top 50 Animated films toward the end of the project. More importantly, post about them as much as you possibly can- I understand that not everyone can post about everything they watch, but give it a shot. We're going to have a lot of shorts discussed, so if it's on youtube, let people know, and try to watch other people's faves too.


THE RULES

So this is tricky, and I'm willing to take suggestions for improvement on some of these

BASICS

Each individual list is to comprise no more or less than 50 films, ranked in your order of preference (with no ties). You can make it your top 50 favorite Bugs Bunny cartoons if you want, there are no rules for minimum number of films seen or anything.

ELIGIBILITY

Any feature film, experimental film, short film, TV miniseries, TV movie, or TV special done with traditional hand drawn animation, cel animation, computer animation, rotoscopy, stop motion, claymation, or any other form of animation is eligible. If you're not sure if something is animated, or if it has enough animation to qualify, bring it up in the thread, or just vote for it. I'm going to say that a mixed media work with as much animation as Who Framed Roger Rabbit? definitely qualifies, but there are plenty of corner cases.

TV series are out, so no voting for The Simpsons or any particular episodes of the The Simpsons. As far as anime goes, I'm not sure I'm qualified to draw the line between eligible miniseries and ineligible TV series, so if you have a borderline one, bring it up in the thread.

For more details about rules and procedures, please refer here.

ELIGIBILITY – REMINDERS / SPECIAL CASES

Placeholder

RESOURCES

The Animated Movie Guide, a listing of animated features released theatrically in the US from 1937-2009.
The Disney Shorts Encyclopedia, and its sequel project the Internet Animation Database
The Canadian Film board's list of animated films from, uh, Canada
A bunch of recommended Soviet/pre-Soviet Russian shorts, in no particular order
Previous Animated Films thread
Any other resources are welcomed, and I'll be looking for more myself in the near future.

GUIDES WITHIN THIS THREAD

Do you feel you have an especially informed opinion about the work from a particular studio, country, style, etc.? Well why not make a guide, then? Seriously, there are rabbit holes and to spare with this genre, so anyone with any kind of expertise, please share it with the class.

Available Guides:

Tex Avery's MGM shorts: R1 DVD availability (thanks, Swo17)
Early/pioneering/experimental/fringe animation available on DVD (thanks, Gregory)
Various best-of lists (thanks, Saturnome)
Guide to Studio Ghibli, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 (thanks, Dansu Dansu Dansu)

FORUM MEMBER SPOTLIGHTS

You know what these are, you guys. Post your favorites, the ones you're afraid nobody else will have watched.

1. Make a post about the film discussing why you find it so exceptional.
2. Clearly indicate that you wish the film to be one of your spotlight titles.
3. Direct others to where the film can be found.

I'll keep track of all the spotlight titles here so that they can be easily referenced. You're welcome to have more than one spotlight title, but try not to have too many more, so it's manageable for everyone to be able to see them all.

Everyone is strongly encouraged to give each of these films the same chance that you would hope others would give your own spotlight titles.

The Secret of Kells (Tomm Moore and Nora Twomey, 2009), matrixschmatrix. Available on Netflix Instant as well as DVD & Blu.
The Man Who Planted Trees (Frédéric Back, 1988), terabin. Available on YouTube here and as part of a Frédéric Back box set here.
Animalympics (Steven Lisberger, 1980), Domino Harvey. Available on YouTube (in HD) here and on, uh, VHS.
The Three Caballeros (Norman Ferguson et al, 1944), knives. Available on DVD.
FLCL (Takeshi Ando, Shôji Saeki, Kazuya Tsurumaki, Masahiko Ôtsuka, 2001), knives. Available on YouTube here and on DVD and blu.
Shooting Range/Tir (Vladimir Tarasov, 1979), knives. Available on YouTube (Part 1, Part 2) and on DVD in Kino's Animated Soviet Propaganda box set.
Rowing Across the Atlantic/La Traversee de l'Atlantique (Jean-Francoise Laguionie, 1978), Steven H. Available on YouTube without subs (here).
The Monkey King/Uproar In Heaven/Da Nao Tian Gong (Wan Laiming, 1964), Steven H. Available on YouTube (here) and on blu (here).
Haibane-Renmei (Itsuki Imazaki, Jun Takada, Kenichiro Watanabe, Koji Yoshikawa, 2002), Dansu Dansu Dansu. Available here on Hulu, but recommended subbed version is the dvd release.
Beavis and Butthead Do America (Mike Judge, 1996), bamwc2. Available on DVD, Amazon Prime, and Netflix Instant.
Princes et Princesses (Michel Ocelot, 2000), bamwc2. Available on DVD.
Breakfast on the Grass/Eine murul (Priit Pärn, 1987), karmajuice. Available here.
Mindscape (Jacques Drouin, 1976), swo17. Available here.
Spacy (Takashi Ito, 1981), swo17. Available here.
Inspirace (Karel Zeman, 1949), swo17. Available here.
Blinkity Blank (Norman McLaren, 1955), Gregory. Available in Norman McLaren: The Masters Edition box set.

AWAITING FURTHER SUGGESTIONS


DESPERATELY SEEKING SO AND SO

Is there a film you're dying to see but you've exhausted all possible avenues for finding it and still come up short? List it here and perhaps some kind soul will be able to direct you to a copy by PM. Please limit listings here to only a few films that you're most desperate to see.


Resources compiled by matrixschmatrix, dustybooks, knives, swo17, gregory, saturnome, dansu dansu dansu
Last edited by matrixschmatrix on Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:06 pm, edited 29 times in total.

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willoneill
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#2 Post by willoneill » Tue Jan 01, 2013 2:01 pm

This looks like a good place for me to start my viewing.

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#3 Post by matrixschmatrix » Tue Jan 01, 2013 2:07 pm

Oh, speaking of which- I don't know if anyone else on here lives in Western Mass, but if you are, the Amherst Theater is doing a Studio Ghibli festival starting in March, showing something like nine Miyazaki movies on Sundays and Wednesdays. Also, if someone wants to do a Ghibli guide, I'd be very appreciative.

terabin
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#4 Post by terabin » Tue Jan 01, 2013 3:14 pm

My member spotlight is Frederic Back's The Man Who Planted Trees. This short film - 30 min - features the most lovely hand-drawn animation, like intricate colored pencil sketches come to life. Indeed the animation just pulses with life. Back holds off from showing the full color palette until well into the film, restraining the first half to browns, as we get a sense of the motivation of the Man who Planted Trees, planting life in a barren valley. The film has an incredible sound design to match the animations. Just watching and listening as the thirsty boy drinks from the Man's gourd is a thing of beauty. The movement of the Man handing the boy the guard and the boy throwing back his head and drinking deeply, these movements are complemented beautifully by the sound design: the bleating of the sheep, the wind howling, the boy's approach on the gravel of the land, and then the firm transfer of the guard, and the sound of the boy's deep drink. It is the sound design that fully grounds the film in a sense of place - humans and animals living in the dust. Back uses Normand Roger's score sparingly, but to beautiful effect. The shimmering violins set the scene as the Man tells his life story to the boy, then Roger hands off the melody in turn to a pensive clarinet, then a tender and sprightly flute, building with harp, and giving the melody back to the violins at an emotional climax in the Man's story as the Man talks of losing his only son and wife. Christopher Plummer's narration (in the English version) is sure and steady and kind in telling the tale.

If you watch it online, make sure to catch the 480p version on Youtube or Vimeo.
Last edited by terabin on Tue Jan 01, 2013 3:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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swo17
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#5 Post by swo17 » Tue Jan 01, 2013 3:22 pm

Here's a resource I prepared earlier this year:

Tex Avery's MGM shorts: R1 DVD availability

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#6 Post by matrixschmatrix » Tue Jan 01, 2013 3:59 pm

Terabin, can you link the best youtube version? I've put one in the OP, I don't know if it's the preferred one you mentioned. Also, is there an affordable DVD release anywhere that you're aware of?

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Gregory
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#7 Post by Gregory » Tue Jan 01, 2013 4:12 pm

I just threw together this list of early/pioneering/experimental/fringe animation available on DVD. My criteria were a bit vague, and some things I hemmed and hawed on but decided to leave off. Some, such as some earlier Disney films, obviously broke important ground but were too obvious to include. Méliès is here because he was a crucial forerunner for McLaren and many others and was a pioneer of stop-motion techniques. I tried to leave out things that are OOP and hard to obtain. If I've forgotten anything else, please PM me and I'll amend the list.

Alexeïeff, Alexander – The Animation of (Facets)
Beckett, Adam - Complete Works, 1970-1979 (Iota Center)
Bowers, Charley – The Rediscovery of an American Comic Genius (Image)
Cohl, Émile – Gaumont Vol. 2 set from Gaumont (France) or Kino (U.S.) the latter being less complete
Engel, Jules - Selected Works (Iota Center)
Fischinger, Oskar – Ten Films (CVM)
Fleischer, Max and Dave – Popeye the Sailor Vols. 1-3 (which also include bonus early Fleischers) (Warner)
Jarnow, Al – Celestial Navigations (Numero Group)
Jordan, Larry – Lawrence Jordan Album (Facets)
Keen, Jeff – GAZWRX (BFI)
Latham, John - Films 1960-1971 (Lux)
Maxwell, Stephanie - Animated Works, 1984-2007 (Iota Center)
McKay, Winsor – The Master Edition (Image)
McLaren, Norman – The Master’s Edition (HVE) (see also: Cut-Up: The Films of Grant Munro)
Méliès, Georges – First Wizard of Cinema (Flicker Alley)
Painlévé, Jean – Science Is Fiction (for the short “Barbe-Bleu”)
Quay Brothers – The Short Films, 1979–2003 (BFI)
Reiniger, Lotte – Adventures of Prince Achmed (Milestone)
Ruttmann, Walter – Lichtspiel Opus I–IV on German Filmmuseum release of Berlin
Smith, Harry – Treasures IV (Image/NFPF), The Harry Smith Project 2CD/2DVD box set, and Heaven and Earth Magic and Early Abstractions (HarrySmithArchives.com)
Starewicz, Ladislaw – Cameraman’s Revenge & Other Fantastic Tales (Image)
Svankmajer, Jan – The Complete Short Films (BFI)
VanDerBeek, Stan - Visibles (Re:Voir)

Various collections: Anxious Animation (Other Cinema), Anthology of Polish Animated Film (PWA), Avant-Garde Vol. 1 (Kino – Richter etc.), Le mouvement des images (Pompidou, France), More Treasures from American Film Archives (NFPF/Image), Treasures IV (Image – Breer etc.), Unseen Cinema (Image – Alexeïeff, Bute, Crockwell, etc. etc.), Animated Soviet Propaganda set
Last edited by Gregory on Thu Jan 17, 2013 2:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

terabin
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#8 Post by terabin » Tue Jan 01, 2013 4:20 pm

Here's the version of The Man Who Planted Trees that has the 480p.

The film is included in a Frederic Back CBC Box Set that ships to Canada and the US. $39.99 (plus shipping) for 9 of his animated shorts.

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Feego
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#9 Post by Feego » Tue Jan 01, 2013 4:23 pm

I would also like to recommend the following DVDs:

Max Fleischer's Color Classics: Somewhere in Dreamland (VCI) -- My favorites of this collection: Poor Cinderella (a Betty Boop short), Somewhere in Dreamland, Greedy Humpty Dumpty, Christmas Comes But Once a Year, and All's Fair at the Fair
The Cartoons That Time Forgot: The Ub Iwerks Collection Vol. 1 (Image)
The Cartoons That Time Forgot: The Ub Iwerks Collection Vol. 2 (Image)
Last edited by Feego on Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#10 Post by matrixschmatrix » Tue Jan 01, 2013 4:31 pm

By the way, guys, if you're recommending a DVD of animated shorts, be sure to mention a few key favorites- I'm worried we're going to have a hard time getting to a consensus 100 on this, so please stump for the ones you love.
Last edited by matrixschmatrix on Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jiraffejustin
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#11 Post by jiraffejustin » Tue Jan 01, 2013 4:58 pm

Everything Will Be Ok (2006, Hertzfield)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1IUX0Qy-IDM" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Having seen none of Hertzfield's work to previous to this, I can say this was a pleasant introduction to a new acquaintance. Brilliant narration. Funny deadpan delivery. Fun experimenty animation style. An experimental animated short isn't the sort of thing that many people would call realistic, but I think it realistically depicts an emotional breakdown. So in that way, it's one of the more realistic films around.
Last edited by jiraffejustin on Tue Jan 01, 2013 9:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Feego
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#12 Post by Feego » Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:48 pm

matrixschmatrix wrote:By the way, guys, if you're recommending a DVD of animated shorts, be sure to mention a few key favorites- I'm worried we're going to have a hard time getting to a consensus 100 on this, so please stump your favorites.
I've gone back and added some favorites from the Fleischer set above. I'll try to post more detailed write-ups for those soon.

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#13 Post by matrixschmatrix » Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:07 pm

I'm not 100% decided on this, so I figured I'd put it up to you guys: how ought we to count something like Jason and the Argonauts, where the animated sections are essentially limited to special effects work, but are also the most memorable parts of the film?

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swo17
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#14 Post by swo17 » Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:20 pm

Sounds like a "vote for it" deal, though if you count Jason that would seem to open the floodgates to any number of modern CGI extravaganzas. I don't personally see myself voting for anything like this.

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#15 Post by matrixschmatrix » Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:29 pm

Fair enough. I'm trying to put together a list of the animated films from the TSPDT list, but I think for now I'm going to leave those off- you're still free to make a case and vote for those, though.

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knives
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#16 Post by knives » Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:41 pm

matrixschmatrix wrote:Oh, speaking of which- I don't know if anyone else on here lives in Western Mass, but if you are, the Amherst Theater is doing a Studio Ghibli festival starting in March, showing something like nine Miyazaki movies on Sundays and Wednesdays. Also, if someone wants to do a Ghibli guide, I'd be very appreciative.
Likewise San Diego is having one at the Landmark theaters in the area. I can't remember if it is just at the Ken or if the Hillcrest and La Jolla are included too. I'll also try to get a broad American studio on DVD guideline going tomorrow (was busy today) and will post the first part of my go through of the Disney feature canon on Saturday. I'm planning on only going through the first twenty features, but may do more if it is popular enough (the goal is more to familiarize people with animation language versus the more familiar live action language rather than introduce any obscurities or what not). I hope everyone has as much fun with this list as I am going to. So here's my spotlights.

First off is The Three Caballeros which I'll talk about in my Disney guide, but trust me when I say it is animation at its most sublimely absurd. I also want to nominate FLCL which thankfully as an OVA counts as not a television show. This is easily the most hilarious and strangely defined anything to come out of Japan's animation which speaks volumes. On its surface its a fairly basic coming of age story like if Doinel brought out his anguish through bitterness rather than rebellion. Of course with the magic of animation, robots, government agencies, and aliens nothing ever becomes what it at first seems and the series needs a few serious run throughs for the audience to get its grounding. Thankfully it is so fun to do it with. Finally i want to mention one of my favorite shorts ever the rather obscure Shooting Range by Tarasov. It's available on Kino's essential Soviet animation set. Despite its rather typical anti-capitalist message it will leave you absolutely chilled in how it expresses that theme with animation that blows everything out of the wind.

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domino harvey
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#17 Post by domino harvey » Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:55 pm

I would like to give a shout-out to a childhood favorite, Animalympics, rather unbelievably unavailable on DVD-- but a superior rip is up in 1080p (!) on YouTube. This early 80s mishmash of animated feats of athleticism by a wide variety of animals, celebrity impersonations from comedians like Billy Crystal, Gilda Radner, and Harry Shearer, and fantastic music numbers by Graham Gouldman is a strange beast, pun probably intended. I no doubt watched this a thousand times as a kid, but rewatching it recently I was wholly won over by its earnestness and charm. Plus those catchy numbers!

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#18 Post by matrixschmatrix » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:12 am

knives wrote:First off is The Three Caballeros which I'll talk about in my Disney guide, but trust me when I say it is animation at its most sublimely absurd. I also want to nominate FLCL which thankfully as an OVA counts as not a television show. This is easily the most hilarious and strangely defined anything to come out of Japan's animation which speaks volumes. On its surface its a fairly basic coming of age story like if Doinel brought out his anguish through bitterness rather than rebellion. Of course with the magic of animation, robots, government agencies, and aliens nothing ever becomes what it at first seems and the series needs a few serious run throughs for the audience to get its grounding. Thankfully it is so fun to do it with. Finally i want to mention one of my favorite shorts ever the rather obscure Shooting Range by Tarasov. It's available on Kino's essential Soviet animation set. Despite its rather typical anti-capitalist message it will leave you absolutely chilled in how it expresses that theme with animation that blows everything out of the wind.
Is there a particular release you'd recommend for FLCL?

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knives
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#19 Post by knives » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:17 am

I guess I didn't describe it well, but basically it somehow through all the explosive animation and wide ranging humour manages with its core story to say a lot about growing into adulthood by force that most other attempts have never even gone to. Its topic is a very difficult one since it is unusual in a lot of ways (though one I personally relate to way more than I should). Also I suspect given its form it might be overlooked even by those who have seen it.

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Gregory
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#20 Post by Gregory » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:19 am

Aside from the Disney features, I'd be interested in anyone's recommendations of the outstanding shorter material. There's a huge amount of it I haven't seen, not being that big of a Disney person in general. Within reach I have the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, 1927-28, Mickey Mouse in black and White, 1928-35, and the Goofy shorts, 1939-61, but I probably will not have time to watch all of these, so any recommendations from among any of those would be especially appreciated.

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knives
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#21 Post by knives » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:28 am

The Oswald and Mickey's are mostly dire (I actually prefer the Walter Lantz Oswalds), but basically all of the Goofy stuff is must watch though Donald's shorts hold up the best particularly his wartime ones. I also find Jackson's The Little House to be the best of Disney's short films. It can be found on the Rarity set and is totally worth it. It should be the sentimental claptrap that popular imagination has Disney as, but instead manages to be an intelligent metaphor on aging and conversely rebirth by community. Mickey in colour volume two has his best shorts with the elegant redesign by Riley Thomson

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#22 Post by matrixschmatrix » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:31 am

knives wrote:I guess I didn't describe it well, but basically it somehow through all the explosive animation and wide ranging humour manages with its core story to say a lot about growing into adulthood by force that most other attempts have never even gone to. Its topic is a very difficult one since it is unusual in a lot of ways (though one I personally relate to way more than I should). Also I suspect given its form it might be overlooked even by those who have seen it.
Sorry, I guess I wasn't clear- I meant to ask, like, would one be best advised just to buy the blu that pops up on Amazon, or is there some particularly good release of the series out there?

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knives
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#23 Post by knives » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:34 am

The Blu is the best english friendly release to my knowledge. Also listen to it with the english dub as the visual element is too dense for subs and the english dub was supervised by Tsurumaki.

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#24 Post by matrixschmatrix » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:36 am

Gregory wrote:Aside from the Disney features, I'd be interested in anyone's recommendations of the outstanding shorter material. There's a huge amount of it I haven't seen, not being that big of a Disney person in general. Within reach I have the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, 1927-28, Mickey Mouse in black and White, 1928-35, and the Goofy shorts, 1939-61, but I probably will not have time to watch all of these, so any recommendations from among any of those would be especially appreciated.
Der Fuhrer's Face and Victory Through Air Power are both goddamn fascinating, and the latter has some of the most interesting use of the Disney house style I've seen in anything (though it's not a short per se.)
Last edited by matrixschmatrix on Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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domino harvey
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Re: The Animation List Discussion & Suggestions (Genre Proje

#25 Post by domino harvey » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:38 am

Der Fuhrer's Face is a classic. All of the Disney cartoons in that WWII "Homefront" tin are pretty interesting assuming one is interested in their historical context-- certainly it gives us a still-prescient take on Chicken Little!
Last edited by domino harvey on Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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