Wang Fo, the greatest master of medieval China, aided by his assistant who has given up everything to follow him, desperately seeks aesthetic perfection. A day comes when he thinks he has ... See full summary »
The scene is a pre-French Revolution Bastille, where various political prisoners are being held: a woman who was raped and impregnated by the king, a police chief who was accused of selling... See full summary »
A château, flowering gardens, a threatening forest, here is what, for mysterious reasons, a Painter has left incomplete. Three kinds of characters live in this painting: the Toupins, who ... See full summary »
A gardener tries his best to make his salad plants grow. It is only when he cries that his tears finally water the field and the salads grow huge. The incredible size attracts a multitude ... See full summary »
This short animated film from Rene Laloux opens with a distant, almost alien narrator informing us that "we've discovered a bizarre story...of two orphans who flee a world stricken by war and death...across an ash desert...to reach a city whose inhabitants have become guardians of silence" "Noise is chaos" says one of the so-called priests of this city, and "silence is order and harmony".
The meditative, atmospheric, percussive qualities of the soundtrack complement the mystical disappearing/reappearing figures of this city, which presages similar elements and moods found in 'Spirited Away'.
The animation style is comparable to that of Laloux's 'Gandahar', although some of the more psychedelic and primitive artistic qualities are more reminiscent of his 'La Planete Sauvage'.
Laloux's trademark disjointedness or "schizophrenic" style of cinema is still in tact, leaving things nicely open for interpretation. A few stunning sequences also appear, as a brilliant snowfall sequence set against the ebb and flow of some fantastic foreign ocean soon transitions into a surreal scene involving a beached whale and the erotic mysteries dwelling therein.
With the full moon shining brightly and the tide rising quickly, the two orphans are accompanied by the city's shadowy prime-mover/prisoner as they sail away at dawn. "Fortunately, order and silence don't always prevail in the end"...
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