A devoted and happily-married housewife organises a surprise party on the occasion of her husband's birthday, unbeknownst to her that her dentist spouse is experiencing a sudden mid-life crisis at his office.
Accompanied by a shamisen, a masterful storyteller verses his lyric and sad rakugo (a traditional form of Japanese verbal entertainment) of a stingy old man living in a squalid tiny apartment in Tokyo, who after scavenging a few cherries from the pavement, he eats them whole for fear of wasting the pits. Before long, a minuscule cherry tree sprouts unexpectedly atop his bulging head, and when all efforts to get rid of it are proven futile, he allows it to grow into a magnificent tree where people gather for hanami under its cherry blossoms. And then, when the hordes of men start being annoying, the desperate man takes a decision that will follow him for the rest of his life.Written by
Atama-yama is one wonderfully weird animated short from Japan
I just discovered this animation artist from Japan, Koji Yamamura, from Amid on Cartoon Brew. One of Yamamura's animated shorts showcased there was this one as linked from YouTube, Atama-yama (Mt. Head), that was nominated for the Oscar as Best Animated Short for 2002. It tells how a man who chews cherry pits keeps having some leaves grow on top of his bald head that he frequently cuts off and saves in a jar. After a while, he lets the leaves grow into a tree but then people start hanging around on his head so he tears the tree off leaving a hole with water. As all this happens, a narrator tells what goes on in various pitches. This was such an interestingly weird short that I may watch it again to catch up on all the images. Yamamura is truly an artist among his country's animators. Uniquely funny especially with the way it all ended. So on that note, I highly recommend Atama-yama.
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