Most moviegoers are familiar with animation in feature films, whether it be the epic fantasies of Disney and Pixar, or the silly comedies of Illumination and DreamWorks. But the art of the short animated film is not as well known, partly due to its lack of exposure. Pixar sometimes plays a short film before one of its features in the theater, but these instances are few and far in between.
The Seattle International Film Festival might be known mostly for their large festival in May, but don’t let your guard down on their year-round offerings. The 20th Annual Animation Show of Shows, now playing at the SIFF Uptown Cinema in Queen Anne, this collection of fifteen short animated films delivers the perfect experience for any film lover who wants something a little off the beaten track.
Engage in a series of animation projects taking all shapes and sizes, from all over the world and every genre imaginable. This festival celebrates diversity, risk taking, emotional expression, unity, and most importantly, art. Each short has its own tale to impart in fifteen minutes or less, and the constraint of that little amount of time leads to surprisingly dramatic emotional responses, from heartwarming, to sadness, to hilarity.
The animation styles also take multiple forms, and are universally inventive and impressive. Traditional two dimensional drawings coincide with three dimensional computer animation, and the art and color styles go from deliberately drab, to watercolor, to soft pastels, to hardlined, to wide eyed Disney-like characters.
Every film has something new to present, a different story to tell, and garner its own interpretation from the audience. It’s not going to be a collection of typical movies, and children may be bored by the lack of a cohesive narrative and protagonist to follow. But look no further if you’re willing to take a chance, and see the other kinds of emotional responses movies can get from you. These shorts can be found at the SIFF Uptown theater through Thursday, March 14.
Also, be sure to follow SIFF on social media for more news about their year-round cinema, and don’t miss out of the main festival coming up in May!