Results tagged “Animation”

Funan Blu-ray Review: A Genocide Through the Eyes of One Family

A beautiful telling of a tragic story.
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In the mid to late 1970s, the Khmer Rouge ruled Cambodia as one of the most brutal regimes in modern history. Led by Marxist leader Pol Pot, the Khmer Rouge wanted to take Cambodia back to what they called “Year Zero” or an egalitarian, agrarian society cleaned from what they thought to be the terrible influences of capitalism. On a practical level, this meant emptying the cities and marching everyone into rural collectives where they would be forced into slave labor. Anybody thought to be an intellectual (including those who wore glasses or spoke a second language) were summarily executed.

Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles Blu-ray Review: Historical Animation Paired with a Dichotomy-Filled Story

Following the story of Luis Buñuel's compelling 1933 documentary, this animated feature combines surrealism and a real story that is sure to satisfy international audiences.
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Though not always the case, animated movies have a presumption of innocence, providing a movie-going experience for the whole family. Let me say this first: Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles is not a family film. Salvador Simó’s film depicts violence, death, and much heavier topics than usually seen in the animated genre. It’s not even completely animated, as the film follow Luis Buñuel’s journey in making his 1933 documentary Land Without Bread, a depiction of the very poor Las Hurdes region in Spain. This 2019 film combines real footage of that documentary with an animated plotline of Buñuel

Dreamworks Ultimate Holiday Collection Blu-ray Review: Holiday Specials for a New Generation

Having them all in one set is too much to pass up.
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As my friends and family can attest, Christmas is my favorite time of year. Not only do I decorate the inside and outside of my home and throw my own party, but on Christmas Eve, I have created my own special tradition. I make hot chocolate, open a box of See’s Candies, and watch all my favorite holiday movies. Most of those end up being various half-hour animated specials. Several of those I watch every year are on this new collection and there are a few that I had never seen before. Trolls Holiday is a lot more musical than

Genius Party & Genius Party Beyond Blu-ray Review: Dozen Odd Egg Japanese Animations

Twelve short films from veterans of the anime industry explore the limits of storytelling, animation, and sometimes the audience's patience.
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Short movies get kind of short shrift because... they're short. And even though our modern mode of considering a "film" as something that lasts at least 90 minutes has more to do with modern commerce than it does with anything inherent in the medium, it's hard to fight against cultural expectations. The short film feels like a calling card. A dry run. A test for an idea that might have legs, or be the basis of a "real movie". Except in the world of animation. Some of the greatest animators in history have done nothing but shorts. All of the

Wonder Woman: Bloodlines 4K Ultra HD Review: All Hail the Princess

Diana tees off against a massive array of all-female baddies in this original story.
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The latest DC animated film starts off poorly, with a prolonged 10-minute origin story on Wonder Woman’s home island of Themyscira followed by another nearly 10 minutes of her introduction to the U.S. before we even get to the opening credits. We’ve seen Wonder Woman’s origin so many times in her previous incarnations that the latest rehash is a total waste of viewer time. Thankfully, things pick up once the credits end, and the film does have one major perk that sets it aside from the majority of DC’s typical adaptations of comic book stories: an original plot. Diana is

Dilili in Paris Movie Review: Michel Ocelot's Love Letter to the City of Light

Ocelot's distinctive voice shines through in his latest animated feature film.
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In his latest feature film, veteran animation auteur Michel Ocelot immediately toys with audience perceptions by opening on what appears to be a tribal African village before zooming out to reveal the scene taking place in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, a virtuoso sequence that draws viewers into guessing about the film’s direction. After three previous feature films set in Africa starring the character Kirikou, not to mention the timing of this film’s U.S. release coinciding with the usual seven-year gap between each of the Kirikou films, it’s easy to imagine that we’ll explore more of the tribal village

Scooby-Doo! Return to Zombie Island DVD Review: The Plot Is Pretty Much Contained in the Title

The Gang returns to the setting of their best film with less exciting results.
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Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided the writer with a free copy of the DVD reviewed in this article. The opinions shared are his own. For almost 30 years, Scooby-Doo! TV shows and movies didn't have what you would call continuity. There was a backstory to the characters that was changed slightly to fit the needs of the plot. There was always a hint that the gang had encountered ghosts and villains before but not a continuing story from episode to episode. The changing landscape of animated television series and movies has added to the evolution of the franchise. Now, we've

The Case of Hana & Alice Blu-ray Review: An Animated Slice of Life

GKids brings us this animated prequel to Shunji Iwai's Hana & Alice which is a lovely, episodic, charming day in the life of a burgeoning friendship.
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In 2004 Japanese director Shunji Iwai made Hana & Alice, a live-action movie about two high school students who both fall in love with the same boy. Slightly more than a decade later, he made The Case of Hana & Alice which is the story of how those two began their friendship. Rather than cast two different actresses to portray the protagonists younger selves in this prequel, Iwai decided to animate the film and keep the actresses for their voices. Fourteen-year-old Tetsuko Arisugawa, who will later get nicknamed “Alice” (Yû Aoi ) moves to the suburbs (or the “sticks” as

Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Mystery Mansion Review

A fabulous package arrives to celebrate 50 years of Scooby-Doo.
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Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided Cinema Sentries with a free copy of the Blu-ray giftset reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I shared are the writer's own. When Warner Bros announced a year of Scooby-Doo celebrations for the 50th Anniversary of the show, this is the release (along with The New Scooby-Doo Movies) that I had most wanted to see. The September 3, 2019 release is just short of the September 13, 1969 Saturday morning debut of the series on CBS. The complete first series is finally available on Blu-ray. The 41 episodes over four discs represent the first

Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Mystery Mansion Giveaway

Features all episodes of the iconic Scooby-Doo Where Are You! series on Blu-ray for the first time ever.
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Cinema Sentries has teamed up with Warner Bros. Home Entertainment to award one lucky reader Scooby-Doo, Where are You!: The Complete Series Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Mystery Mansion, which is available on September 3. To learn about the set, read Shawn Bourdo's review and the press release is below: Available in stores on September 3, 2019, this release is packaged in an eye-catching, limited edition collectible mystery mansion giftset that includes all 41 episodes of the original series, Scooby-Doo! Where are You!, released on Blu-ray for the first time, as well as a Digital Copy of the series. This must-own

Toy Story 4 Coming to Homes Digitally Oct. 1 and on Blu-ray and 4K UHD on Oct. 8

Fans who bring home Toy Story 4 will be treated to over an hour of bonus features celebrating the film's iconic characters, Pixar's filmmaking team and the legacy of Toy Story.
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Press release: This summer, Disney and Pixar’s Toy Story 4 took audiences on a hilarious and heartwarming road trip with Woody, Buzz Lightyear and the whole gang, earning a 98 percent critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes and more than $1 billion at the global box office. Packed with old friends and new faces, the fourth film in the beloved Toy Story series, which leads Woody to an unexpected fork in the road, arrives home on Digital in 4K Ultra HD, HD, and Movies Anywhere Oct. 1, and on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD Oct. 8. Fans who bring home Toy

Wally Gator: The Complete Series DVD Review: Delightfully Silly, Don't Y'know

Best in small doses because of the similarity of the plots.
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As part of the Hanna Barbera Classic Collection, the Warner Archive Collection has released Wally Gator: The Complete Series. The two-disc release presents the 52 cartoons the character starred in, which first appeared as part of The Hanna-Barbera New Cartoon Series on ABC from September 3, 1962 - August 30, 1963. Wally Gator was one of a trio of cartoons the series aired. The other two were Lippy the Lion & Hardy Har Har and Touché Turtle and Dum Dum. The series is similar to Hanna Barbera's hit cartoon Yogi Bear (1961-1962). Wally Gator is a hat-collar-and-cuff wearing anthropomorphic alligator

Book Review: Treasures Retold: The Lost Art of Alex Toth

A collection of rarely seen gems that are not to be missed!
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Not too long ago, I had the pleasure of reviewing Alex Toth's Bravo For Adventure as well as Genius, Animated: The Cartoon Art of Alex Toth, a gigantic tome that served as the third chapter of the Library of American Comics’ overview of the life and career of comic legend Alex Toth, which accompanied 2011’s Genius, Isolated and 2013’s Genius, Illustrated. Together, those three massive (seriously, they’re 9.5” x 13”) volumes provided an astonishing and impossibly in-depth look at one of history’s most accomplished and influential cartoonists. And now, IDW and LOAC once again combine forces like some sort of

UglyDolls Sing-Along Edition Blu-ray Review: A Kids Movie, Through and Through

Simple and fun, but doesn't demand repeat viewing.
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There are two kinds of movies for children, as I see it. First, there are ones with subtlety and nuance in their messaging and with material thrown in to offer something for the grown-ups along for the ride. In this category, I think of the Muppets and Pixar, and to a slightly lesser degree, Disney (there really is nothing for anyone by the third or fourth chapter of an existing franchise being milked for all it's worth). Then we have the movies that are purely for kids in the simplest sense -- the music is less complex and easier to

Doctor Who: The Animation Collection DVD Review: Four Doctors Are Better Than One

The 2-disc set gathers five previously released stories featuring Doctors, classic and modern.
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Doctor Who: The Animation Collection is a 2-disc set that gathers five previously released stories starring four Doctors. On Disc One, The Infinite Quest and Dreamland feature the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) and Shada the Fourth (Tom Baker). Disc Two presents two debuts: The Power of the Daleks with the Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton), and Scream of the Shalka with a non canon Ninth (Richard E. Grant) before the Modern Series was set. The Infinite Quest (2007) was first broadcast on the children's show Totally Doctor Who in 13 installments. Set somewhere during Series 3 as well as the 40th

Iconic Peanuts Gang to Hit Theaters for 50th Anniversary

The first Peanuts movies return for a whole new generation.
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Press release: Fans of all ages will enjoy the 50th Anniversary event cinema release of the two full-length digitally re-mastered Peanuts movies - A Boy Named Charlie Brown and Snoopy, Come Home when the animated features appear in cinema for the first time since 1969 and 1972. See the original Peanuts characters like you’ve never seen them before. Humorous and heart-tugging, both features bring back the joys of childhood and teach kids today’s important life lessons during their most impressionable years. Filled with laughter, courage, loyalty and the lovable friends we all relate to, the original Peanuts movies will win

Missing Link Blu-ray Review: Missing Story, Finding Artistry

Laika's latest project is a masterful triumph of artistry hampered by a mediocre story
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Missing Link is the latest film from the animation wizards at Laika, the tiny U.S. studio responsible for gems including Kubo and the Two Strings and Coraline. Remarkably, this film blows all of their previous output away from a tech standpoint, with stop-motion animation so buttery smooth it's completely indiscernible from computer animation, as well as highly detailed and exceptionally lit sets and character models. Where their prior works The Boxtrolls and ParaNorman suffered from muted color palettes and lighting that made even dark scenes look washed out, Missing Link is an HDR-friendly melange of glorious, vibrant colors brought to

Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Mystery Mansion Available September 3, 2019

Features all episodes of the iconic Scooby-Doo Where Are You! series on Blu-ray for the first time ever.
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Press release: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment (WBHE) salutes that lovable Great Dane, Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Inc. gang with the release of Scooby-Doo, Where are You!: The Complete Series Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Mystery Mansion. Available in stores on September 3, 2019, this release is packaged in an eye-catching, limited edition collectible mystery mansion giftset that includes all 41 episodes of the original series, Scooby-Doo! Where are You!, released on Blu-ray for the first time, as well as a Digital Copy of the series. This must-own box set has some fun extras. The set contains all-new HD content and Scooby-Doo

The Pink Panther Cartoon Collection: Volume 5 (1976-1978) Blu-ray Review

Although the collection sees a higher rate of recycling ideas with the end of the original production run near, the cartoons presented still provide a lot of laughs.
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As mentioned in my past reviews of past volumes, Friz Freleng was an instrumental figure in animation history because of his work on Warner Brothers' Merrie Melodies and Looney Tunes. He and producer David H. DePatie went on to form DePatie-Freleng Enterprises. Kino Lorber Animation has been releasing that company's work on Blu-ray. After a few years of creating theatrical Pink Panther cartoons, DePatie-Freleng brought them to television with The Pink Panther Show, which premiered on NBC on September 6, 1969. DePatie-Freleng resumed producing theatrical shorts again in 1971. The Pink Panther Cartoon Collection Volume 5 presents 22 cartoons, including

Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki Blu-ray Review: Master Filmmaker's New Challenge

An intimate look at Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki's return from retirement to make a short CGI film.
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Hayao Miyazaki has announced his retirement several times throughout his career, but in 2013 it looked like he meant it. Studio Ghibli, the anime studio formed by Hayao and his mentor/producer/competitor Isao Takahata, where he made classics like My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away, and Princess Mononoke, closed the doors of its production office, and disbanded the staff. Miyazaki was apparently done, leaving behind him a legacy of quality that's unrivaled in most of filmmaking, let alone animated films. But the recent announcement that both Hayao and his son Goro Miyazaki are producing feature films with the studio has made it
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