Thursday, 22 December 2011

On the Ninth Day of Christmas, My True Love Gave To Me...

Nine Stop-Motion Wonders
Eight Slappable Arseholes
Seven Crazy Hairdos
Six Splendid Sequels
Fiiiiiive Kick-Asssssss Duuuuuuudes
Four Mindf**k Minutes
Three Shounen Timeskips
Two Crazy Whores
And A Pair of Giant Matrix Boooooobiiiiiiieeeessss!

Early this year I discovered the work of Kihachiro Kawamoto. Now out of all the methods of animating out there my favourite above all else is stop motion, so when I found all these stop motion films I had myself a nerdgasm! With the exception of a handful of titles, Kawamoto's work just oozes traditional Japanese storytelling, which is a big part of what I love about it. Another thing I like is how creepy is all feels. Most of his work is created using traditional puppets, and puppets can be damn creepy!

This is one of the more comical offerings from Kawamoto, if I'm brutally honest, I just love the drunk monk.

A tale of obsessive love gone about as bad as it could go. As much as it does the woman no favours whatsoever, I couldn't help but enjoy it.

This film had some really nice filming techniques and when looking at the age of it, I'm astounded at how incredible the animation is. This is possibly one of the more inherently Japanese of his films, and with the tragic tale it almost gives off a sort of... Kabuki theatre vibe.

You know what, I can't quite put my finger on why I loved this particular film so much, I just did. It just felt like a wholly traditional tale of a young archer training to become the world's greatest. With beautiful animation to boot, I couldn't really complain.

Out of all of Kawamoto's films, this is possibly the one that creeped me out the most, mainly because of the old woman as seen above. Sorry, but that is a face that's ready to haunt nightmares.

Self Portrait is a short little film about a guy making a clay model, which then turns into some messed up demon thing. Not a bad little film, certainly better than the Tezuka short of the same name.

Unlike Kawamoto's other films, this is much longer. At sixty nine minutes in length, making this must have been a labour of love. Plot wise it certainly wasn't my favourite and I confess to getting a little bored throughout, but this is certainly a bloody good example of stop motion animation.

This is a somewhat different sort of take on the tale of Sleeping Beauty. Mainly, I was impressed with the animation in this, the actual plotline was a bit odd to be honest.

As a film, I wasn't actually all that keen on Kenju Giga. It possibly didn't help that it was all in French so I only had a basic understanding of it, but even if it were in English, I doubt I'd have liked it. However, animation wise I still couldn't help but be impressed.

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