As part of our effort to preserve projects from film festivals that would otherwise be lost, we have curated the list of winners from the 2018 Imaginaria Film Festival. As well as providing entertainment for thousands, as an explainer video agency, these animated films have provided inspiration for some of our animated video projects. The Imaginaria Film Festival continues to be held and the festival’s new website can be found at www.imaginaria.eu.
Below is more information about the award-winning entries from the 2018 Imaginaria Festival.
Best Animated Short Film – Winner
The Blissful Accidental Death
The Blissful Accidental Death is an animated short film with a captivating and mysterious storyline. A sensitive young man purchases a 1930s charcoal sketch and discovers a surrealist love letter/poem on the backside instead of a signature. Intrigued by the drawing’s authenticity and the intentions of its unknown author, he seeks to unravel the truth behind the artwork. However, an elderly woman, who is the likely author, refuses to reveal the addressee’s name, believing it to be inconsequential in the grand scheme of life’s experiences.
The film’s animation style uses a mix of 2D and 3D imagery to convey a sense of simplicity, resembling hand-made cut-outs and the rawness of cardboard. The storytelling unfolds like a nightmarish chain of associations, exploring the consequences of cruel actions filtered through an individual’s sensitivity. As the protagonist delves deeper into the mystery, he enters a game of hide-and-seek with the truth, guided by a little girl who presents an absurd pet toy, a rhino, symbolizing a monstrous transformation.
The narrative delves into Dadaism and touches on historical figures and ideologies like Eugene Ionesco, Nae Ionescu, and the Iron Guard. It explores themes of expression, identity, and the power of memory in the face of loss and violence. The film also confronts the legacies of prominent Romanian artists, writers, and intellectuals of the 20th century.
The protagonist’s journey takes him to meet the author, a 105-year-old painter, who was friends with significant Romanian artists from the early 20th century. Through this encounter, he unravels the truth behind the love letter and gains insights into the lives and experiences of those who have been deprived of their identities and their voices.
It is a thought-provoking and visually compelling animated short film that explores the themes of love, identity, memory, and historical significance through a fascinating and mysterious narrative.
Best Animated Short Film – Winner
The film revolves around a young boy named Mercurio, who has a passion for cycling. However, his life takes a dark turn when he is stopped and detained by the Fascist regime, leading to his imprisonment in a transit camp, with the imminent threat of being sent to a concentration camp. In the face of this horrifying reality, Mercurio must grow up rapidly and confront the brutalities of the Fascist regime.
Determined to resist and seek absolute freedom, Mercurio embarks on a courageous and unarmed fight against the oppressive forces of Fascism. Through his unwavering passion for cycling and other childhood interests, he finds strength and resolve, ultimately accepting the harsh realities of the human condition. In doing so, he manages to escape the physical and mental alienation imposed by the fascist dictatorship and discovers a sense of true freedom.
The film uses 2D animation to portray the young boy’s struggle against the horrors of the Fascist regime and his journey to find liberation and self-discovery through his passions and resilience. It is a powerful story of hope, resistance, and the indomitable spirit of a young soul against tyranny.
Best Animated Short Film (Student Category) – Winner
Once in the Fields of Boredom
Once in the Fields of Boredom is a short animation that tells the story of a couple whose relationship has reached a point of stagnation, leaving them trapped in a state of profound boredom. The film utilizes projection mapping, stop motion, and mixed animation techniques to convey its narrative.
The movie begins with a mundane and uneventful supper between the couple, highlighting their dissatisfaction with their current situation. The woman, feeling restless, disappears when there is a brief interruption in the flow of the dinner. The man, sensing that something is amiss, starts searching for her and eventually finds her in the company of a new companion, realizing the inevitability of their separation.
The film delves into themes of existential void, ennui, and the yearning for change and excitement. It portrays the struggles of a couple who have grown distant and disconnected from each other. The animation style blends frame-by-frame animation with projections on a forest backdrop, creating a unique visual experience that emphasizes the characters’ emotions and the significance of their decisions.
“Once in the Fields of Boredom” is a thought-provoking and visually captivating animation that explores the complexities of relationships and the human desire for novelty and fulfilment in the face of monotony and routine. The film is targeted at an adult audience and offers an introspective look into the nature of boredom and its impact on relationships.
Best Animated Short Film For Kids- Winner
One Small Step
Andrew Chesworth and Bobby Pontillas
One Small Step is an animated short film presented by TAIKO Studios, centred around Luna, a vibrant young Chinese American girl with a dream of becoming an astronaut. Luna’s inspiration to reach for the stars comes from witnessing a rocket launch on TV. With the loving support of her father, who runs a humble shoe repair business, Luna faces various challenges as she pursues her dream. The film beautifully portrays Luna’s determination and the emotional journey she embarks on to achieve her goal.
The animation, storytelling, and sounds come together seamlessly, delivering a powerful message about following one’s passion and inspirations. The film resonates with audiences, touching hearts with its heartwarming narrative. Viewers praise the film for its emotional depth and the way it encourages dreams and determination.
One Small Step has been highly acclaimed, earning praise for its captivating storytelling, beautiful animation, and touching depiction of familial love and support. It has garnered positive reviews, and some viewers even express their desire for TAIKO Studios to create a full-length feature film based on the short.
The film is an emotionally moving and visually stunning animated short that leaves a lasting impact on its audience, conveying a powerful message about perseverance and the pursuit of dreams.
Bloeistraat 11 / Bloomstreet 11
This short film that portrays the true friendship of two inseparable best friends spending their last summer holiday of childhood together. As the summer progresses, they undergo physical changes due to puberty, which brings awkwardness and uncertainty to their once carefree bond. The film beautifully captures the evolving dynamics of their relationship without the need for dialogue, using impressive animation techniques to convey the story.
The film delves into the complexities of adolescence and the challenges of navigating friendship during the tumultuous period of puberty. It explores how growing up can impact even the closest of relationships, as one girl seems to advance ahead of the other, creating a shift in their friendship.
The animation combines traditional drawing and stop-motion techniques, showcasing the talent and creativity of the animators. The characters are hand-drawn and printed onto plastic, while the house and other elements are physical models. The seamless blend of these animation styles brings the story to life, further complemented by the lack of dialogue that allows the visuals to speak volumes.
Overall, Bloeistraat 11 is a touching and visually impressive short film that effectively portrays the complexities of puberty and the impact it can have on friendship. It beautifully captures the essence of carefree childhood and the inevitable changes that come with growing up, making it a compelling and emotionally resonant viewing experience.
Enough is a short animated film produced by Anna Mantzaris at the Royal College of Art. The film centres around the theme of lost self-control and the impulses we all feel but seldom act upon. The film presents a series of vignettes featuring stressed inhabitants of a city who have reached their breaking points and decide to act upon their dark urges. As the characters face the challenges of everyday life, their frustrations and desires lead to moments of emotional anarchy.
The story follows the journey of ordinary people who succumb to their internal compulsions and engage in actions they know are wrong. The film explores the concept of how living in a bustling city and facing daily pressures can lead to a build-up of irritations and desires to break free from societal norms.
The animation creatively conveys the characters’ emotions and inner thoughts, using a tactical aesthetic with wool and felt to create the characters. The director, Anna Mantzaris, captures the relatability of the characters through their expressions and body language, making them feel like real people despite their cute appearance.
“Enough” has been widely acclaimed and has received numerous awards for its narrative, animation, and directorial achievements. The film’s brevity showcases Mantzaris’ talent in creating a memorable and engaging experience for the audience. It’s a humorous and thought-provoking film that reflects the universal human experiences of frustration, desires, and the occasional temptation to act upon our impulses.