Friday, January 05, 2007

Innovative Filmmakers Who Would Give Your Toddler Nightmares

My series on arthouse films for toddlers has received a lot of attention over the past week. Thanks largely to a mention on the great illustration blog Drawn, it has led a lot of new readers to Think In Pictures' sister blog, Z Recommends, and the blog has even apparently been profiled in a South African radio broadcast. The favorite of the five posts among viewers, based on links, seems to be the one that shows Yuriy Norshteyn's Hedgehog in the Fog, which is also my favorite of the bunch. It truly is an amazing film.

I have already had some interesting suggestions for other animated shorts. A few of them I saw myself during my own research but found inappropriate for a two-year-old, but a lot of others are new to me. Most of those are not toddler-friendly either (despite what I might say elsewhere, finding animators who produced work that interested my daughter and was appropriate for her age required a lot of research), others have helped me discover a few really great animators. I will be highlighting a few of those films here since they really are worth watching.

Here are a few scenes from a beautiful Czech stop-motion film of the Pied Piper of Hamlin. This was not a new discovery for me but I think you can probably guess why I didn't want to show it to my two-year-old daughter. It was suggested by a person who goes by "fabulousrice" but I don't know his or her name. A couple more of fabulousrice's suggestions will be up here over the next few days, and one really great one that is toddler-appropriate will be making an appearance as #6 in my toddler series on ZRecs as soon as I have a chance to watch it with her and get her rating. [Update: IFWWBYTM #6, featuring the French stop-motion teenyboppers Chapi Chapo, is now online.]

If there are any Jiri Barta nuts out there or you'd like to become one, there is an opportunity to be the creator of a page on Wikipedia about him, because there doesn't yet appear to be one. If you make one and include some half-decent information in it email me to let me know and I will write a haiku about you for this blog and link it to your homepage or blog if you have one. I have a black belt in haiku.

Also, a big welcome to all the new subscribers to both blogs. If you like this stuff, subscribe to Think In Pictures (RSS | Feedburner) or ZRecs (RSS | Feedburner) and we'll keep in touch with you.

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