The 19th Annual Animation Show of Shows (2017) - Rotten Tomatoes

The 19th Annual Animation Show of Shows (2017)

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The ANIMATION SHOW OF SHOWS returns to theaters across North America and will open at the Quad Cinema in New York on December 29th (with many other cities to follow), presenting 16 exceptional and inspiring animated shorts from around the world. At a time of increasing social instability and global anxiety about a range of issues, the works in this year's show have a special resonance, presenting compelling ideas about our place in society and how we fit into the world. "Because animation is such a natural medium for dealing with abstract ideas and existential concerns, the ANIMATION SHOW OF SHOWS has always included a number of thoughtful and engaging films," says founder and curator Ron Diamond. "However, more than in previous years, I believe that this year's program really offers contemporary animation that expresses deeply felt issues in our own country and around the world." These films include Niki Lindroth von Bahr's Annecy Grand Prix-winning "The Burden," a melancholy, funny and moving film that explores the tribulations, hopes and dreams of a group of night-shift employees, uniquely capturing the zeitgeist of our time. At the other end of the spectrum, David OReilly's playful and profound "Everything," based on the work of the late philosopher Alan Watts, explores the interconnectedness of the universe and the multiplicity of perspectives that underlie reality. Perhaps the most relevant film in the show is a 50-year-old short that was restored by The ANIMATION SHOW OF SHOWS with grants from ASIFA-Hollywood and The National Film Preservation Foundation. "Hangman," by Paul Julian and Les Goldman, and based on a poem by Maurice Ogden, explores themes of injustice and personal responsibility in its tale of a town whose residents, afraid to speak up, are methodically executed by the title character. Other program highlights include "Dear Basketball," Disney veteran Glen Keane's animation of a poem by Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant, written on the occasion of his imminent retirement; Academy Award-winning Pixar director Pete Docter's 1990 CalArts student film "Next Door"; and "Casino," the latest film from director Steven Woloshen, who, for some 30 years, has been creating award-winning experimental films by drawing directly on film stock. The 19th ANIMATION SHOW OF SHOWS represents the work of artists from eight countries, including nine women. Funny, moving, engaging, and thought-provoking, the ANIMATION SHOW OF SHOWS not only has something for everyone, but is a remarkable and insightful microcosm of our world.

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Critic Reviews for The 19th Annual Animation Show of Shows

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (3)

An exceptional program that starts off strong and only gets better as it goes, the 19th Annual Animation Show of Shows overflows with charm while containing more provocative observations about the nature of existence.

December 29, 2017 | Full Review…

Like most omnibus programs, the offerings are a mixed bag, but this year's 16 titles showcase a gratifying range of styles and subjects, with work that includes veterans and newcomers, the experimental and the commercial.

December 28, 2017 | Full Review…

For viewers weary of the overly detailed look of many recent American CG features, the "Show of Shows" offers a welcome reminder that an animated film can be as intimate and personal as a signature.

December 11, 2017 | Full Review…

This curated 90-minute program of 16 animated short films from around the world offers some laughs, some gorgeous visuals and a fair amount of reflection on troubled times and assorted anxieties.

January 17, 2018 | Full Review…

The 19th Annual Animation Show of Shows is a tough call for those seeking consistency. But there are certainly enough enticing shorts within the package to make the weaker portions acceptable to overlook.

December 28, 2017 | Full Review…

This year the best film was 53 years old.

December 13, 2017 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…

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