Animated April, Retrospective Review: Thumbelina

I must have been four years old when I first watched Don Bluth’s and Gary Goldman’s adaptation of “Thumbelina”, it was probably one of the first films I actually saw at the cinema (or at least one of the first ones that I can recall seeing). Although I can’t really recall whether I enjoyed the film as a child, there are certain aspects of it that I can still remember to this day.

Watching it all these years later at the age of thirty, I can safely say that “Thumbelina” is not a good movie. I’m not alone in this thought as the film has only 30% rating over at Rotten Tomatoes. In his review, Roger Ebert gave it two stars and wrote “It is difficult to imagine anyone over the age of 12 finding much to enjoy in “Thumbelina.” To be honest, I think anyone over the age of four would struggle to find much enjoyment out of this film. Continue reading Animated April, Retrospective Review: Thumbelina

Animated April: Spotlight on Lotte Reiniger

Charlotte “Lotte” Reiniger was a German film director and the foremost pioneer of silhouette animation. Perhaps her most famous film is “The Adventures of Prince Achmed”  (1926) which is considered to be the oldest surviving animated feature film. “Prince Achmed” features a silhouette animation technique that Reiniger had invented which involved manipulated cutouts made from cardboard and thin sheets of lead under a camera. She went on to film over 40 films using this technique and her work went on to influence many filmmakers. Reiniger led an extraordinary life, even escaping the Nazi party in 1935 before having to return to Germany in 1944 and being forced to make propanganda films. Continue reading Animated April: Spotlight on Lotte Reiniger