Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fival effing rocks

An American Tail is one of those movies from my childhood that I remember loving despite not remembering the movie itself. I got a chance to watch it again a couple of weeks ago, and it rocked my socks off.

This movie is simply gorgeous. The characters, the backgrounds, everything makes today's "stylish" animation look like amateur work. Every scene is placed in an environment with a unique, painterly look that perfectly captures the tone of American immigration in the late 19th century. Their level of complexity and detail are enough to make the movie a technical achievement by themselves.

But it doesn't stop there. The animation is top notch. The main characters are "Disneyified" to perfection while the humans are stunningly accurate in their movements. I'm tempted to believe that the animators traced over frames from actual film - it's that good. Take a look at the final shot (approx. 3 min into the video) as the camera pans around the statue of liberty. This was before the days of 3D models and cel shading and it was executed without any hiccups. Stunning.

Watch it; you'll be amazed.

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