To animate something is to give it the illusion of having life. The materials animators “bring to life” are unlimited. This year LET’S GET ANIMATED includes a whiteboard that expresses an evolving adoration between two people on a ball team, an ocean filled with creatures that look familiar in shape but whose composition is in opposition to their environment, and a textile-designed dinosaur that swallows a pathogen with a personality! Included on this reel are…
ATHLETICUS: Guides – Two flamingoes find a colorful glove on a ski slope. Of course it MUST be headwear to a flamingo! (2019 / 3 mins / France / dir Nicolas Deveaux / animation / no dialogue)
DOG OF MY DREAMS – True love doesn’t always have to be about people. Stop motion collage animation with our original, Ants on a Log song of the same title. (2020 / 2 mins / USA / dirs. Anya Rose , Julie Beth / live action & animation / in English)
FLOREANA – On a remote island in the future, people are training for an important mission. Take a look at the mechanics of this training facility and the creatures within. It’s simply otherworldly. (2018 / 4 mins / Denmark / dir Louis Morton / animation / no dialogue)
COVID BACH – This free-flowing stream of consciousness animation is set to J. S. Bach’s The Well-Tempered Clavier. The fully hand-drawn images weave in and out between abstract and nightmarish visions. Then the dream ends . . . but does it? (2020 / 2 mins / Canada / dir Elizabeth Lewis / animation / no dialogue)
NOS QUEREMOS – Charming scribbled animation is set to an original coming of age song portraying the love of two oddball friends. (2020 / 3 mins / USA / dir Steve Mosqueda / animation / in English)
THE 7 KIDS – A wolf hired to babysit lambs. What could possibly go wrong? Who would hire such a babysitter? (2020 / 5 mins / Russia / dir Marina Karpova / animation / in English)
THE BEAUTY – 2021 Global Awareness Short Film Winner! The Beauty is a poetic journey through a fascinating underwater world, where plastic and nature become one. (2019 / 4 mins / Germany, Egypt, France / dir Pascal Schelbli/ animation / no dialogue)
PUMPER’S PARADISE – In a world populated with fitness addicts the biggest challenge they confront can be boring, everyday situations! (2019 / 2 mins / Germany / dir Eddy Hohf / animation / no dialogue)
OM NOM NOM – One day, a hungry dinosaur came across a weird jumping egg in the forest. He swallowed it, and then felt some strange rumblings in his tummy. Maybe it wasn’t such a good egg afterall… (2019 / 3 mins / Japan / dirs Minato Matsuda, Haruna Ueno, Tomoko Taiga / animation / no dialogue)
A TINY TALE – A dog is abandoned on the side of the road. Attached to a street light, he stays alone until the day he meets a young astronaut wannabe and a professional cyclist who keeps on trying to beat her highest score. (2020 / 7 mins / France / dirs Sylvain Cuvillier, Chloé Bourdic, Théophile Coursimault, Noémie Halberstam, Maŷlis Mosny, Zijing Ye/ animation / no dialogue)
THE CHIMAI AND THE STORM – After a great storm, a very old Chimai (spiritual healer) tends to the damage created in the forest and the toppling of a massive tree. She finds an unexpected surprise and a great power is revealed. (2020 / 8 mins / Argentina / dir David Bisbano/ animation / no dialogue)
WILD LEA – Lea is a strong, lonely, and floral cat who discovers the complexity and the perks of friendships after falling from a tree. A very caring ragdoll named Ciro tends to her injuries and introduces Lea to his family of fixed-broken things. Unlike Lea, they have a fear of going anywhere outside the home. The day would come when they would need to overcome that fear to help their friend. Super imaginative animation where forks, toilet paper and napkins come alive! (2019 / 9 mins / Colombia / dir María Teresa Salcedo Montero/ animation / in Spanish w/English subtitles)
ATHELETICUS: Sled – End of the day for the bobsleigh managers. Which means it’s time to party – and stuff yourself with fish. (2019 / 3 mins / France / dir Nicolas Deveaux / animation / no dialogue)
France was the number two country from which we received submissions this year. (U.S. was #1, can you guess #3? The answer is at the end of the film synopsis!) With so many good ones to choose from we NEEDED to have a French film reel this year. The language is common between them but the styles run the gamut. Some highlights include two eight-year-olds who decide to embark on their own Montreal adventure, earthworms singing about their role in what could be your backyard, and a kingdom where “fashion rules the day”…until Ridicule arrives! Film on this reel include…
SONG OF AUTUMN (CHANSON D’AUTOMNE) is one of a series of animated shorts that are inspired by the poems of Paul Verlaine. Young filmmakers who have just graduated from French animation schools interpret Verlaine’s poems in film. PCFF is showing three of these films this year. (2020 / 3 mins / France / dir. Jean-Baptiste Marchand / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
WEDNESDAY (MERCREDI) Iris and Leo are waiting for their school bus, just like any other day. This morning, however, it does not arrive. Facing no rules but their own, the two eight-year-olds embark on an urban adventure, one they shall never forget, roaming the streets of Montreal. (2020 / 10 mins / Canada / dir. Lisa Delhom & Jérémy Paquet / live-action / in French w/English subtitles)
DOLIUM PÉPLUM – Recreating battle is one of the oldest games children play. In this short film from France, a vineyard is the setting for two epic forces to fight to the bitter end. (A little irony for U.S. viewers with the red vs. blue costumes.) A super creative short film with make-it-yourself costumes, weapons and battle accoutrements, you will sense the influences of classic battles depicted from Braveheart, Henry V, Kurosawa and even a little Monty Python. 🙂 (2020 / 9 mins / France / dir. Théo Nodet / live-action / in French w/English subtitles)
THE JELLYFISH (LA MEDUSE) – In an ocean infested by plastic, a little being leaves his reef and goes on an adventure on a jellyfish… (2019 / 4 mins / France / dir. Mélanie Peltier / animation / no dialogue)
THE NATURAL ORDER OF THINGS (L’ORDRE DES CHOSES) -An unintelligent insect, at the lower level of the food chain, survives its position as prey in the forest. But suddenly, the established order is overthrown. The insect provokes a sequence of accidents that build upon the other. (2019 / 4 mins / France / dir Luce Grosjean / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
WORMS OF EARTH (TERRE DE VERS) – Naked, slimy and rampant bros; No legs, no teeth, and no toes; We dig with no mischief, your burden we relief; We’re at your service, there is no artifice; The Earthworm team is here, as tight as musketeers. The lyrics say it all! (2019 / 8 mins / France / dir Hélène Ducrocq / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
LUPIN – A young wolf ventures out of his burrow for the first time, while his mother is busy hunting. Lost and frightened, he finds shelter in a garden. Jeanne, Gaston and Louis, the hunters’ children, find him and decide to bring him back to his home in the woods. (2020 / 11 mins / France / dir Hélène Ducrocq / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
CONQUISTADOR is one of a series of animated films that are inspired by the poems of Paul Verlaine. Young filmmakers that have just graduated from French animation schools interpret the poems into their visions on film. PCFF is showing three of them this year. (2020 / 3 mins / France / dir Jérémie Cousin / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
THE FAITHFUL FISH (LE POISSON FIDÈLE) – What would you do with a sculpin (a non-edible fish) that keeps biting on to your hook? Three children on vacation near a lake in Maine try and try and try to catch another fish. (2019 / 8 mins / Belgium / dir Atelier Collectif / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
PROMENADE SENTIMENTAL is one of a series of animated films that are inspired by the poems of Paul Verlaine. Young filmmakers that have just graduated from French animation schools interpret the poems into their visions on “film”. PCFF is showing three this year. (2020 / 3 mins / France / dir Emily Tronche / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
À LA MODE – In a kingdom tormented by fashion crazes, a queen and her court must always keep up with the new trend. If not, an abominable monster will consume them: the Ridicule. But with the arrival of a disarmingly natural cowboy, this nation of fashion victims laughs, and a simple question arises: what if the Ridicule isn’t what we think? (2020 / 9 mins / France / dir Jean Lecointre / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
ATHLETICUS: One Rink for Two – Flamingoes are rehearsing their figure skating number when the ice rink is invaded by a troop of elephant hockey players. The winner of this power play will find their time on the ice trunk-ated! (Ouch!) (2019 / 3 mins / France / dir Nicolas Deveaux / animation / no dialogue)
VANILLE – Vanille, a young Parisian girl who recently arrived in Guadeloupe, dives into an adventure tinged with mystery, meeting picturesque characters and a magic flower. These are holidays that promise to be rich in twists and turns! PCFF’s first film ever from Guadeloupe! And it’s soooo good! (2020 / 30 mins / France & Guadaloupe / dir Guillaume Lorin / animation / in French w/English subtitles)
Who or what do you care for? Sometimes those who care for others are not whom you would think. The stories told on this reel include a witch’s attempts to placate a baby she originally cared for in quite a different way, a fox who takes a baby bird “under his wing”, and a mother who decides it’s time to tell her daughter about her birth mother. They all share a theme about someone caring for another who is quite unlike themselves. Included on this reel are…
THE MAGIC FOREST AND THE THINGS – A six-year-old narrator teams up with an illustrator to tell a story about a land that has apple, chocolate, and dog food trees. (It’s not on any map!) Things go awry when a giant is asked to pick these trees for people to build their houses with. The giant was all too obliging to the point of picking almost all the trees! The people then realized you MUST be more efficient with the way you use these resources if everyone is going to have a home to live in. They adjust their ways and high fives all around! (2020 / 4 mins / USA / dir. Dave Russo / animation / in English / all ages)
THE PROMISE (PCFF 2021 Winner Children’s Hospital Jury Prize!) – The Promise is an urban fairy tale that plays out on the mean streets of a suffering city. Here, a young thief tries to snatch an old woman’s bag but she cannot have it without giving something in return: “the promise”. It is the beginning of a journey that will change her life and a chance to change the world for good. (2020 / 7 mins / UK / dir. Chi Thai / animation / in English / all ages)
THE LEAF – A larger than life sailor gets an autumn leaf from a small girl. It reminds him of his home and for how long he has not been there. He runs home to meet his old parents. What will he find? (2020 / 6 mins / Belarus / dir. Aliona Baranova / animation / non-dialogue / all ages)
THE FOX AND THE BIRD – A solitary fox finds itself improvising fatherhood for a freshly hatched baby bird. Two paths cross and a family is formed until fate reminds each of the life it is meant to lead. (2018 / 12 mins / Switzerland / dirs. Sam and Fred Guillaume/ animation / non-dialogue / all ages)
THE WITCH AND THE BABY – An aging witch needs a baby for a spell to make her young again. But when she brings home a recalcitrant infant things don’t go according to plan. (2020 / 5 mins / Russian Federation / dir. Evgenia Golubeva/ animation / in English / all ages)
AURORA – Once upon a time, there was a little girl who fell in love with a beautiful horse named Aurora. This expressive animation evokes children’s drawings and the texture of storybook illustrations. Aurora is a bittersweet story about love, friendship, and growing up. (2020 / 5 mins / USA-Canada / dir. Jo Meuris / animation / in English / all ages)
TOBI AND THE TURBOBUS is a heartwarming story about growing up in a wolf pack and finding the right place for yourself. Sometimes this requires leaving old friendships behind in order to start new, more supportive ones in the future. (2020 / 7 mins / Germany / dir. Verena Fels / animation / in English / all ages)
REHAK – A young girl discovers Rehak, a magical drawing hidden behind her bedroom wallpaper. She thinks she has found a new friend when in fact someone else has found an old one. (2020 / 7 mins / UK / dir. Pierre B / live-action & animation / in English / all ages)
TWO DIFFERENT KINDS OF LOVE – A young girl is old enough to start to learn about her adoption story. Her mother’s explanation shows she has given this conversation a lot of thought! (2020 / 6 mins / USA / dir. Alyce Vest / animation / in English / all ages)
MAÏJA – In the Nordic Islands, Maïja, a young girl, waits for the return of her father, away at sea. But the weather is worsening and her father is not coming back. (2019 / 7 mins / France / dirs. Arthur Nollet, Maxime Faraud, Mégane Hirth, Emma Versini, Julien Chen, Pauline Charpentier / animation / no dialogue / all ages)
ROSE – Rose’s life-long security blanket represents her mother’s love, which she clings onto as a toddler, tosses aside as a teen, and realizes she desperately needs at the start of adulthood. (2020 / 3 mins / USA / dir. Emily Kimes / animation / in English / all ages)
ATHLETICUS: The Encounter – A turtle “meeting” a puffin leads to the birth of an epic figure skating couple! (2019 / 3 mins / France / dir. Nicolas Deveaux / animation / no dialogue / all ages)
STOLEN KISSES – “When my grandmother had to move to an elderly home because she had dementia, I thought things would go downhill from there. But on the contrary. She met a man there, Rinus also diagnosed with dementia, and they fell in love. Unfortunately, he got mentally worse than her and had to move away to another home. I was shocked that nobody asked my grandmother and their feelings were so easily dismissed. Although my grandmother forgot a lot of things, she kept on asking me where Rinus was. Her feelings for him she did not forget. I wanted to tell this story. But since there are already many films with the theme of dementia, I thought it would be enlightening to see the story through a child’s eyes. Children also experience these sorts of things and can give us a fresh, sometimes funny, perspective. My grandmother died on October 20th, 2020 aged 96. She hadn’t yet seen my film, but I’m proud to have this also in loving memory of her.” – Lidi Toepoel (Director) (2020 / 14 mins / Netherlands / dir. Lidi Toepoel / live-action / in Dutch w/English subtitles / Ages 8+)
Collection short synopsis:
People with a passion so strong, they live, practice, or focus more effort towards their goal than anything else they know. Get inspired, do stuff! This reel includes a muralist that wants to inspire creative action, two Palestinian boys needing one more soccer card for their collection and a flamingo that gives it his all on gymnastic rings. What’s your passionate pursuit?
Multi-national / In English or w/English subtitles / 75 min / Age 10+ / (one scene full of profanities)
Film lineup is subject to change without notice.
A man runs out of gunpowder tea and goes through one heck of a time trying to get more!
France, 2019 / no dialogue / Romane Faure, Nathanael Perron, Léa Detrain, Benoît de Geyer d’Orth, Pei-Hsuan Lin, Anne-Lise Kubiak / 5.5 min / Animation.
ATHLETICUS: Anneaux en gymnastique artistique
A pink flamingo manages a great score on the gymnastic rings…? Something is fishy here!
France, 2019 / no dialogue / Nicolas Deveaux / 2 min / Animation.
During the 1990 World Cup, two young Palestinian boys are looking for “Maradona’s legs”; the last missing sticker that they need in order to complete their world cup album and win a free Atari.
Germany-Palestine, 2019 / in Arabic with English subtitles / Firas Khoury / 20 min / Live Action.
My Letter to the Oil Men
Papilou is a fourteen year old boy in Nigeria that lives on the edge of a heavily polluted piece of land. His backyard contains thousands of liters of crude oil due to a leak in a pipe. It affected the food grown around him. It forced his now separated family to move to the city. Papilou wants the oil pollution to be cleaned up. He writes a letter to Shell Oil who is responsible for the pollution. A protest has to start somewhere.
Netherlands-Nigeria, 2019 / in English / Xander de Boer / 15 min / Documentary.
During the fall of the Soviet Union the thirteen-year-old Nana comes from America to a small village near Budapest, where she meets Gau, a boy her age whom she befriends immediately. When her visit to Hungary comes to an end, the friends have to say a painful goodbye. Oceans apart, Gau hatches a plan to reunite with Nana… using a catapult?! Love has no bounds.
Hungary, 2019 / in Hungarian with English subtitles / Balázs Szövényi-Lux / 27 min / Live Action.
You can outgrow the bedroom you grew up in but you really never leave it behind.
Australia, 2019 / no dialogue / Matthew Koh / 4 min / Animation.
Five Minutes to Sea
The mother issues her decree: before you get back in the water, you have to take a break and sit quietly for five minutes. For the little girl, these five minutes feel like hours. Time slows down all around her as she watches bathers enjoy a day at the beach.
Russia, 2018 / in Russian with English subtitles / Natalia Mirzoyan / 7 min / Animation.
199 little heroes: Cynthia from Burundi
12 year old Cynthia lives in the poorest area of Burundi. Both parents died from Malaria. Her days start with fetching water without having any breakfast. She walks miles to school daily to seek an education with hopes of becoming a member of Parliament some day.
Germany-Burundi, 2018 / in Kirundi with English subtitles / Lina Luzyte / 12 min / Documentary.
Spirit: A Martian Story
NASA sought evidence of life on Mars. That search begins with water, and the search for water begins with the study of the rocks and the soil. That was the historic mission of the rovers SPIRIT and OPPORTUNITY. This is SPIRIT’S story.
USA, 2019 / in English / Stimson Snead / 10.5 min / Animation-Documentary.
Demolishing stereotypes without wrecking their cars, the Speed Sisters are the Middle East’s first all-female car racing team. With high-octane talent and the marketing savvy to draw attention to their camera-friendly lineup, this diverse, engaging, real-life group competes throughout the West Bank in Palestine’s makeshift motor sports circuit. They navigate Israeli checkpoints and restrictive societal expectations to evolve into potential role models for a new generation of young Arab women.
“T-Rex” is an intimate, true coming-of-age story about a new kind of American heroine. in 2012, women’s boxing debuted at the 2012 Olympics. Fighting for gold from the USA is Claressa “T-Rex” Shields, just 17 years old and by far the youngest competitor. From the hard knock streets of Flint, Mich., Claressa is undefeated and utterly confident. Her fierceness extends beyond the ring as he protects her family at any cost, even when their instability and addictions threaten to derail her dream. Claressa does have one stable force in her life. Coach Jason Crutchfield has trained her since she was just a scrawny 11-year-old hanging out at his gym. Jason always wanted a champion, but never thought it’d be a girl. Her relationships with her coach and her family grow tense as she gets closer to her dream, but Claressa is determined. She desperately wants to take her family to a better, safer place and winning a gold medal could be her only chance.
Director David Fine’s documentary takes something many American youths are familiar with (basketball), and moves us on a true-life journey to a land many of us are unfamiliar with (Iraq). The result is extraordinary. “Salaam Dunk” is an insightful look into young Iraqi life as experienced by a current women’s college basketball team. The players are a fascinating and genuinely inspiring bunch, and the squad’s mere existence provides a stirring example of the possibilities for young Iraqis outside the country’s war zones. What they overcome on the court, you have seen in other movies; what they must overcome in their Iraqi society, you have not.
If heights make you nervous, you might want to find another movie! Tancrède and Julien are two friends on an incredible exploration into the world of free flight. They are pioneers in “highlining” – a vertiginous combination of climbing, slackline and tightrope walking. Using their fearless skills and experience as climbers, the pair push the boundaries of possibility as they embark on a new evolution of their sport. Some would argue it’s art.
Follow their travels from the Verdon gorge to the skyscrapers of Paris and finally to the spectacular cliffs and fjords of Norway, where the pair put weeks into training for their ultimate test. (It’s hard not to think of Philippe Petit).
Divercine International Children’s Festival 2007 Children’s Jury Award; Ene and Tõnis Kask Foundation of the Estonian National Culture Foundation 2006, Best Film; Latvian Film Festival 2007, Best Feature Length Animation;\Mill Valley Children’s Film Fest 2008, Audience Award; TINDIRINDIS International Animated Film Festival 2007, Best Feature-Length Animation
This feature-length animated film from Estonia is a gentle, spirited film full of wacky contraptions, silly/happy songs, and a warm and refreshingly un-cynical sense of humor. Lotte is a cheerful girl dog who lives in Gadgetville, a village crazy about inventing Rube Goldberg-esque machines. The town is abuzz about the Japanese bee Susumu, who introduces Gadgetville to the concept of judo. After the town becomes obsessed with the sport, Lotte and her three friends try to help Susumu get back to Japan to test their new skills in an international judo contest.
Enjoy this inside look at the nuts and bolts of Indy racing cars, as large and loud as life. Mario Andretti and his son Michael race in competition with cameras mounted on their cars, capturing the speed and heart-pounding thrills of racing in a way few films have ever attempted. Paul Newman is the narrator, but the stars are the cars. “Super Speedway” and many other experiential films were the first to be shown regularly in IMAX venues.