Posted: 06/08/2010


Animation Express on Blu-ray and DVD

by Elaine Hegwood Bowen

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A world of magic and artistry lies ahead, and there is only one way to get there. All-aboard the Animation Express!

Animation Express is a delightful compilation of short animated features that cover myriad areas, such as social commentary, visual delight and selections for everyone via Blu-ray disc.
Available June 8 by Image Entertainment, this collection of 26 shorts will take you on a journey beyond your wildest imagination! The Blu-ray disc brings the computer generated images, as well as sketch and hand-drawn animation, to life.

Thirteen additional shorts include Pimp My Boat, which takes a cue from cable television’s Pimp My Ride and has the actors taking a fisherman’s plain, old boat and embellishing it with a host of “upgrades” that makes it really exciting.

Another particularly interesting short called The Necktie follows the career of an office worker who’s celebrating another monumental anniversary of employment for an uncaring, inconsiderate boss. The main character goes about his work, year after year to receive a tie from his employer through the mail as a token of appreciation. But once when he sneaks on the elevator to the top floor of the building, he discovers that maybe he doesn’t want to reach the top of his career, after all. Fellow former workers are found hanging from their neckties and being whisked off into a receptacle to their deaths.

Under the Visual Delight category, Spare Change shows a street beggar begging another beggar, which the two decide is nothing short of a “mugging.” The beggar goes from a wintry day in Montreal to Heaven and then to Hell and back, begging for change. The imagery and visual effects range from character drawings to flip book animations by Ryan Larkin, which were finished after his death by Laurie Gordon.

Other titles include such masterworks that range from the traditional to the experimental, as the multi-award winners Sleeping Betty, Madame Tutli-Putli, Drux Flux, The Spine, Rosa Rosa, Invasion of the Space Lobsters, Sainte Barbe, Land of the Heads and much more! This DVD or Blu-ray disc would be a treasure for anyone’s film library.

Animation Express travels from groundbreaking short films to classic cartoons, using seasoned and emerging talents from the venerable National Film Board of Canada. Available on both DVD and Blu-ray, Animation Express has been mastered in pristine high definition. For more information, visit Web site

Elaine Hegwood Bowen is an editor, writer and film critic in Chicago.

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