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More Animation from Down Under

December 3, 2010
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If you were unable to catch the Australian Film Festival in Makati last weekend, here are some snapshots of what you missed (synopses provided by the Australian Embassy):

Birthday Boy

Academy Award Nomination, Best Animated Short Film, 77th Academy Awards, 2005

Set in 1951 during the Korean War, little Manuk is alone and playing at being a soldier, making his own toy on the empty bombed streets of his village. He imagines life at the front where his father is a soldier. He returns hoe to find a parcel on the doorstep and, thinking it is a birthday present, he opens it. But its contents will change his life forever.

The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello

Academy Award Nomination, Best Animated Short Film, 78th Academy Awards, 2006

Set in a world where airships are made of iron and computers are powered by steam, this gothic horror mystery tells the story of Jasper Morello, a disgraced aerial navigator, who flees his plague-ridden home on a desperate voyage to redeem himself. The expedition through vast uncharted skies is filled with horrors but in a shocking climax, Jasper discovers that the greatest horror of all lies within man himself. Made entirely in silhouette, the film is an epic steampunk story in the gothic tradition of Jules Verne and Edgar Allan Poe.

Footnote

Cannes Film Festival, Cine Foundation 2004

In a monotonous world, two alienated characters mysteriously transfer symbols to unravel tradition and authority.

The Magic Pudding

Almost a century after the first book was published, Norman Lindsay’s Australian children’s classic The Magic Pudding has finally come to life on the big screen A unique animated feature about Albert, a magnificent magic puddin’ who can turn himself into just about anything – with a rather cantankerous temperament and an exhausting habit of always running away but never running out. Oh, and everyone is trying to steal him.

Harvie Krumpet

Academy Award Winner, Best Animated Short Film, 75th Academy Awards, 2003

Harvie Krumpet is the biography of an ordinary man seemingly cursed with perpetual bad luck. Voiced by Geoffrey Rush.

Read about one of Australia’s most prized animated creations, Mary and Max, in this issue of Expat Newspaper, out now.

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