Sign in to follow this  
TopBilled

Isn't it time for an animated film to be an Essential?

20 posts in this topic

I was looking over the list that Lynn posted in the other thread.  Unless I read over it too fast and missed something, I do not see any animated films chosen as part of the Essentials.

 

I think this is a bit of an oversight.  Most other genres have been covered, and I do not think animated films are any less important or essential.  In fact, some people would argue they are very essential in the world of classic movies.

 

Thoughts...?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A glaring omission.

 

My list would include:

 

All stop-motion animations by the The Brothers Quay; anything by Hayao Miyazaki; all early Disney (pre 1950); René Laloux' Fantastic Planet; all Wallace & Gromit claymations

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A glaring omission.

 

My list would include:

 

All stop-motion animations by the The Brothers Quay; anything by Hayao Miyazaki; all early Disney (pre 1950); René Laloux' Fantastic Planet; all Wallace & Gromit claymations

 

 

Well, Disney isn't very keen on letting others show their animated classics. They would rather broadcast them on their on ABC Family channel than lease to other networks like TCM.

 

And I think Disney distributes the Miyazaki films these days as well.

 

The Miyazaki fest that TCM ran about eight years ago (when Miyazaki's studio controlled the rights) was wonderful even though most message board posters back then were aghast at the idea of "Japanese anime" being on the channel even though the fact they called "anime" basically let everyone know that they weren't familiar with Miyazaki or his films.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe a compromise would to show something that is a combination of live action and animation for the Essentials Jr. Though not every animated film is for kids, obviously.  I am thinking about the critically lauded THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH, from 1970, which is not a Disney film and has aired sporadically on TCM. Since the book is still used as core literature in the upper elementary grades, this would be a smart selection.

 

Meanwhile, Disney's WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT, which has aired during 31 Days of Oscar, could be used as a regular Essential.

 

There are plenty of other films that qualify-- I am just using these as a starting point, since they are ones that already do air on TCM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My pick for Disney films would be the original Fantasia, and Dumbo. But, as Lynn says, most likely, Disney wouldn't let that happen. I would nominate Hoppity Goes to Town, and Watership Down. But there surely are more animated features deserving of being Essentials. If they would stretch it to go beyond features, a group of short toons from each of the major animation studios would be nice. I'd start with golden age cartoons. My first pick would be Fleischer Bros., including Betty Boop's Sno-White, and the other two BB toons using rotoscoped Cab Calloway. Then, some pre-1948 WB toons.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would vote for SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARVES

 

I had not seen this film in many many years, until it was shown on the Disney Channel a few years ago, and I was again amazed at how life-like the characters are. So are the birds, the trees, and all of the scenes involving water. I think this is still the best animated film.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In August, TCM has scheduled the animated classic GAY PURR-EE during Judy Garland's day.  This Warner Bros picture has aired before.  It would be a perfect-- purr fect-- title for Essentials Jr.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK I'm going to take an unpopular view and disagree.

 

First, I think a film needs to represent it's genre better than others to be an "essential". An "essential" movie is not geared towards film buffs looking for rarities, but geared towards those just discovering classic film-show them the very best examples of classic film to get them interested in seeing more.

 

While I love animation and wholeheartedly agree an animated film should be included as an "essential", the very best examples ARE Disney films. And as mentioned, Disney doesn't make their best available to TCM. (I always divide Disney films between the time Walt was alive and after Walt's death)

 

Anyone first learning about classic film that scoffs "cartoons?" would be completely won over seeing any of Disney's earlier animated features, they are stellar examples of great filmmaking. They certainly bridge any gap between adults & children.

 

While I loved GAY PUR-EE as a child, it hardly captures an adult's interest and I think Miyazaki's films are too offbeat and slowly paced to be considered the best examples of animation (although I personally enjoy them)

 

But I agree, animated movies are "essential" and it's sad any of Walt's era Disney films can't be representative of the genre on TCM. (after all, these titles are readily available on DVD anyway)

 

It's high time the mega company overrides their insatiable rampage of money taking by instead honoring Walt's legacy as an artistic filmmaker by making them available for all to enjoy. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

An "essential" movie is not geared towards film buffs looking for rarities, but geared towards those just discovering classic film-show them the very best examples of classic film to get them interested in seeing more.

 

I don't think that is what 'Essential' means.  I think that is how 'Essential' has been marketed and promoted to attract potentially new viewers, or converts to classic film.  But-- I think 'Essential' really means that a film, regardless of genre, represents a certain level of excellence and is recognized as being a favorite among many.  Of course, that can change from generation to generation.  I am sure that some films that would have been regarded as 'Essential' in the mid-1940s during wartime, were not exactly seen as 'Essential' by anti-war protesters twenty or thirty years later.

 

At any rate, 'Essential' can be appreciated by classic movie watchers, old and new-- in any generation-- so it should not just be defined as a way to draw in more TCM viewers (plus there are other classic movie channels that have their own essential film showings and their demographics differ).

 

Next, I do not think the best examples of 'Essential' animation are necessarily Walt Disney-type products. Some of those films certainly are very good, but by no means, do they represent a monopoly on what can be considered classic animation. There is some excellent Japanese animation that would certainly be 'Essential' to someone studying animation outside Hollywood. 

 

Also, GAY PURR-EE was mentioned.  I did not say it should be part of TCM's regular 'Essentials' program, but I said I thought it could be used for 'Essentials Jr.' (now rebranded as TCM's Movie Camp), because some of those selections are occasionally offbeat. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TikiSoo, while I agree that some Disney animation should be Essentials (Bambi, Fantasia, and Dumbo come to mind,) animation essentials can hardly be limited to Disney. There are many other great animated films and shorts.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Indeed there are so many different examples of the varied techniques of film animation other than the traditional cell-animation that usually 1st comes to mind: stop-motion techniques ( with many differing materials, Harryhaussen's creatures, Puppetoons, Claymation, 'South Park' type cut-outs, silhouette (Prince Achmed), humans (Angry Kid  shorts), sand, pinscreen) and all the new computer/digital techniques. I don't think there would be any difficulty in filling up a SOTM or Fri. Night Spotlight with examples of some really fascinating & creative films (assuming rights availability, of course)

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animation#Traditional_animation

 

BTW, I always wanted a chance to see the Oscar nominated animated films and shorts mentioned every year at the awards. Where does anyone get to see ANY of those?? ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agreed with the Anime thing. Aside from Akira, Howl's Moving Castle or Princess Mononoke may work as essentials. 

Hmm, that reminds me to look up some Japanese classic films. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agreed with the Anime thing. Aside from Akira, Howl's Moving Castle or Princess Mononoke may work as essentials. 

 

Hmm, that reminds me to look up some Japanese classic films. 

Some of the Toei Doga films of the 50s and 60s should recieve more recognition as essential works as well, in particular Horus, Prince of the Sun (1968), a film which attempted to break the Disney mold by bringing in socio-political themes and psychological realism into its fairy tale world. It would be a shoo-in for an "essential."

 

It would be nice if Disney would allow TCM to air their first features (Snow White, Pinocchio, Fantasia, Dumbo, Bambi), which are the crown jewels for that studio in my opinion. But as others have said, to claim that only Disney's features should be considered "essential" is, to be frank, a bit insulting to the animation medium as a whole. There's more than just Disney. Another good choice would be Paul Grimault's The King and the Mockingbird (1952) or Ralph Bakshi's surreal and autobiographical Heavy Traffic (1973). Even Don Bluth's The Secret of NIMH (1982) deserves to be considered a classic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WTH? They don't have any animated classics as essential? Good grief....whatever.

They showed MR. BUG GOES TO TOWN last year as an Essential for Movie Camp (formerly Essentials Jr., geared to kids). 

 

But I am sure grown-ups would appreciate an animated film as a regular Essential. Maybe next season TCM will include one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Thoughts...?

 

 

Didn't I hear over the weekend that ALICE DOESN'T LIVE HERE ANYMORE is now an "essential"? Or was that just a joke? I think OLYMPIAD should be an "essential".

 

How about THE EGG AND I?

 

Seems like THE GRAPES OF WRATH should be an "essential".

 

Who is Alice? Why doesn't she live there anymore? Is the white rabbit and the Queen of Hearts in the film?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Didn't I hear over the weekend that ALICE DOESN'T LIVE HERE ANYMORE is now an "essential"? Or was that just a joke? I think OLYMPIAD should be an "essential".

 

How about THE EGG AND I?

 

Seems like THE GRAPES OF WRATH should be an "essential".

 

Who is Alice? Why doesn't she live there anymore? Is the white rabbit and the Queen of Hearts in the film?

I definitely agree about THE GRAPES OF WRATH. But they would need a guy like Alec Baldwin back in the co-hosting chair in order for something like that to be picked. Osborne would never choose it, and probably none of the females would, either.

 

ALICE DOESN'T LIVE HERE ANYMORE has actually been a TCM Essential twice-- the first selection was three years ago by Drew Barrymore; and now again this year, chosen by Sally Field. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

ALICE DOESN'T LIVE HERE ANYMORE has actually been a TCM Essential twice--

 

I watched a few minutes of it. Very boring.

 

What ever happened to RIDE THE PINK HORSE?

 

How about THE WILD PARTY with Clara Bow, that TCM aired about 12 years ago? It was directed by a very talented woman director and was Bow's first sound film. It was excellent, and a classic, and Female Directed, and completely modern in subject matter and dialogue. What ever happened to that film on TCM?

 

What happened to INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS? One of the three TOP sci-fi films of the 1950s (along with THE THING and THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL).

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

New Members:

Register Here

Learn more about the new message boards:

FAQ

Having problems?

Contact Us