France’s Michel Ocelot made a striking case for the revival of traditional animation techniques with his Kirikou films and Azur & Asmar. His latest is a technological leap of sorts, using the darkening properties of digital 3D to make its silhouetted characters – an old man and two youngsters, enacting global legends on an abandoned cinema stage – pop out even further from vividly shaded backgrounds. The tales, sad, strange and funky, are a riot of wandering accents, nipples, morals and monsters, underpinned by a love of storytelling and pretty things, whether melancholy princesses or illustrations ripped from art history books. The pick-and-mix approach is limiting, but there’s no denying these are gorgeous amuse-bouches, likely to be devoured by older, more discerning children and dyed-in-the-wool stoners alike.
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