Next stop: Canada (Focus Norman McLaren)

Animation short film cycle by Norman McLaren, director awarded with some of the most important film awards, and one of the pioneering names of animation cinema known for its technique of drawing on film itself. An amazing and very fun session.

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Films:

Christmas Cracker / Biscoito de Natal, Jeff Hale , Norman McLaren , Grant Munro and Gerald Potterton, Canadá, anim., 1963, 9’
This short animation consists of three segments that take a playful look at Christmas: a rendition of “Jingle Bells” in which paper cut-out figures dance, a dime-store rodeo of tin toys, and a story of decorating the perfect Christmas tree. This holiday film received many awards and an Oscar nomination.

Hen Hop / Galinha Saltitante, Norman McLaren, Canadá, anim., 1942, 4’
This joyful short animation features a dancing hen that transforms into an egg. The film was made without a camera by Norman McLaren, who drew directly onto 35 mm movie stock with ordinary pen and ink. Colour was added optically.

Il était une chaise / Era uma vez uma cadeira, Claude Jutra and Norman McLaren, Canadá, anim., 1957, 10’
Animated short film in the dazzling way of Norman McLaren. The filmmaker illustrates the unusual phenomenon of the revolt of matter. But why should not the man and the object agree in friendship?

Short and Suite / Cores e Sons, Norman McLaren, Canadá, anim., 1959, 5’
This short animation is a delightful colour cocktail by Norman McLaren and Evelyn Lambart. The various moods in music written for a jazz ensemble by Eldon Rathburn are translated into moving patterns of colour and light. This lively short is composed of images hand-scratched and hand-painted directly onto the film strip.

Canon / Cânone, Norman McLaren and Grant Munro, Canadá, anim., 1964, 9’
This short animation explores the “canon”, a form of musical “round” in which each singer picks up the words and tune of a song after the preceding singer. Through a combination of animation and live action, this lively musical film demonstrates, without dialogue, the many patterns that a canon can take depending on the number of participants and the length of the piece of music in question.

Boogie-Doodle, Norman McLaren, Canadá, anim., 1948, 3’
In this short animation film, the “boogie” is played by Albert Ammons and the “doodle” is drawn by Norman McLaren. Made without the use of a camera, Boogie-Doodle is a rhythmic, brightly coloured film experiment.

Opening Speech: McLaren / Discurso de Abertura: McLaren, Norman McLaren, Canada, anim., 1961, 7’
In this short film, Norman McLaren is literally caught by his own film tricks. As he attempts to welcome an audience, he is frustrated by an animated microphone with a will of its own.

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