Exhausted and profoundly melancholic, anachronistic Madame Tutli-Putli wants to board a train. And, surrounded by a lifetime's worth of personal belongings, she waits patiently. Is she running away from her past?


Chris Lavis (story), Maciek Szczerbowski (story)


Laurie Maher
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 12 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »





Uncredited cast:
Laurie Maher Laurie Maher ... Madame Tutli-Putli (uncredited)


Madame Tutli-Putli boards the Night Train, weighed down with all her earthly possessions and the ghosts of her past. She travels alone, facing both the kindness and menace of strangers. As day descends into dark, she finds herself caught up in a desperate metaphysical adventure. Adrift between real and imagined worlds, Madame Tutli-Putli confronts her demons and is drawn into an undertow of mystery and suspense. The National Film Board of Canada presents a stunning, stop-motion animated film that takes the viewer on an exhilarating existential journey. The film introduces groundbreaking visual techniques and is supported by a haunting and original score. Painstaking care and craftsmanship in form and detail bring to life a fully imagined, tactile world unlike any you have seen. Jungian thriller? Hitchcockian suspense? Artistic tour de force? The Night Train awaits you. Written by courtesy of National Film Board of Canada

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


The chess board is incorrectly oriented - a black square should be bottom left, not bottom right. See more »


Rites of Spring Reverb
Performed by Set Fire to Flames and Bruce Cawdron, John Heward, Christof Migone, Jonathan Parent, Thea Pratt, Roger Tellier-Craig
See more »

User Reviews

How Does One Interpret This Story?
3 August 2010 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

I'm not quite sure what to make of this. At least I'm being honest. Maybe a second viewing will make me see things clearer. The last few minutes were extremely puzzling. But don't be misled; I liked it.

This is another bizarre and riveting stop-action animated short from the National Film Board of Canada, which has put out some really interesting material in recent years.

"Madame Tutli-Putli" is not a humorous story, although you might get a few chuckles in the 17 minutes. It's mostly a haunting tale of a waif-like woman on a Canadian night train with all her earthly possessions and a cabin full a strange people. It must take place in the 1920s or early '30s because the woman wore one of the "Flapper" hats.

Anyway, without giving more away, the story gets tense and then gets downright scary. Is the woman going to be attacked by outside strangers who mysteriously board the train or is it all a fantasy by this troubled woman? I liked the music score in here, and was glad to read some other reviewers here felt the same way. It's easy to get wrapped up in the amazing visuals and the story and overlook this cool music.

"Madame Tutli-Putli" was nominated in 2008 for an Oscar. It didn't win, but just being nominated tells you it is definitely worth a look. But, beware: it's not "for all tastes," as the cliché goes. I saw it on the Blu-Ray "Animated Express" DVD which showed off the artwork to the max.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 22 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.


Official Sites:

The original movie





Release Date:

15 February 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rouva Tutli-Putli See more »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed