This morning’s cereal is “Wisdom Teeth,” a handcrafted work of disturbing brilliance on the absurdity of the body and the insanity of pain, brought to you by the wonderfully deranged animator Don Hertzfeldt. You must visit him at bitterfilms.com — where you can pick up DVDs of his selected works over the past decade. His most recent work is the “Bill” trilogy, aka It’s Such a Beautiful Day — a haunting work of existentialism can’t recommend enough. And for a limited time, he is currently screening his brilliant, must-see 2005 film, The Meaning of Life in HD on Youtube.
Don’t forget to brush your teeth.
This 1953 animation of Edgar Allan Poe’s classic story, “The Tell-Tale Heart”, in my opinion remains the best adaptation of the story. Narrated by actor James Mason, produced by UPA…and purportedly the first cartoon to be X-rated in Great Britain.
Here’s a Saturday morning cartoon that’s both endearing and surprisingly brutal: Infant Intolerable by animator Peter J. Casey. I do not endorse child abuse, and neither should you, but…these are blobby organ monsters, right? On the demo real of his work (posted on his blog), Casey shares that this animation was an experiment to see how much emotion he could get out of very simple characters…and the simple story was inspired by a plane ride. Any parent or air traveller can probably empathize…
Here’s a goofy Saturday morning cartoon about “Narwhals” to get your spirits up for New Years. Sure, it’s more PG than my usual choices, but its creator, Mr Weebl references Lovecraftian Horror and that deserves respect. Chances are good you’ve already seen it — it only has about 30 million views on youtube. The song will stick in your head. In fact, it just might impale itself there.
You should check out the beautiful National Geographic photogallery of Hunting Narwhals to see the real things.
This Saturday morning, let’s cartoonically commemorate the whole end of the world madness of 2012 with a cautionary tale. The animation team at Dice Productions presents: “It Came in Peace”:
That’s just a hint at their creative genius. Dice Productions has this thing about small things in big places and vice versa. You should also take a gander at their award-winning, touchingly gross full-length feature, All Consuming-Love (Man in a Cat).
Maybe you wouldn’t call this a cartoon, but I don’t care, because you need to see this. The Cat with Hands (2001) is an awesome short film by award-winning British filmmaker Robert Morgan, mixing live action and animated wax in a very uncanny and disturbing way. Film Threat magazine called it “mandatory viewing for anyone who wants to write a horror movie. Not because of what Robert Morgan does, but because of what he doesn’t do.” True. But I’d say what he does accomplish in this film is also just as brilliant.
Still in your jammies and slurping cereal in front of the tube? Then click through to this week’s Saturday Morning Cartoon…
“The Mysterious Stranger” was a scene in the 1985 film The Adventures of Mark Twain, in which Tom, Huck, and Becky get a visit from a very familiar character…who teaches his lesson through an apocalyptic nightmare.
Good morning. Let’s turn on the time machine and watch an original nightmare cartoon from last century’s Depression-era cultural dreamscape: “Bimbo’s Initiation” (1931). This classic animation from the great Max Fleischer is a surrealist haunted house story as much as it is a edgy, pre-Hays Code, Betty Boop classic.
If you like this kind of thing, you’ll also dig Fleischer’s “Swing You Sinners,” which transpires in an uncanny graveyard. Both films are detailed in Cracked.com’s article, “5 Old Children’s Cartoons Way Darker than Most Horror Movies.”
Today’s twisted Saturday Morning Cartoon is another classic, featured in the Spike and Mike’s Sick & Twisted Festival of Animation: it’s “The Hangnail” by Shane Acker (2000). And it’s a real nailbiter.