Photos: Benoît Chieux, Héloïse Ferlay, Siqi Song, Soetkin Verstegen, Josephine Lohoar Self, Kim Kang-min
Festival Stop Motion Montréal (Belgium, Germany, United States, South Korea, France, United Kingdom)
Adult and teen audiences, 13 years +
Streaming link available from Wednesday, March 3, 2021, at 4 p.m. to Sunday, March 7,
2021, at 11:45 p.m.
Streaming available in Canada only
The short films are presented in their original version with English subtitles.
To our greatest delight, in recent years a growing number of stop motion short films have made their way into the Oscar race. Interest toward the technique and its accessibility now facilitated by recent technology have resulted in a greater abundance of productions from filmmakers who now choose to tell their stories through frame by frame animation. Festival Stop Motion Montréal presents some of the touching works showcased during its 2019 and 2020 editions and that are now part of the long list of 96 animated short films qualified to compete at the 93rd Academy Awards ceremony in April 2021.
Let yourself be charmed by the magic of real matter and its imperfections, by the traces left by agile hands that gracefully animate puppets and objects. Take a seat and enjoy the films!
RUNNING TIME: 55 minutes
TECHNIQUE: Stop motion animation
Founded in 2009, Festival Stop Motion Montréal is the world’s first festival dedicated to showcasing films animated exclusively using stop motion techniques. The Festival aims to foster the development of this amazing technique that creates the illusion of movement with objects or figurines that would otherwise be inanimate. In a digital revolution age, stop motion is experiencing a resurgence. The technique brings back hand made cinema, the texture of tangible materials, and the fantasy world made possible by stop motion animation.
SELECTED SHORT FILMS
Cœur fondant | Melting Heart Cake, by Benoît Chieux (France, 2019)
11 min., in French with English subtitles
Website and teaser
- To share her melting heart cake with her friend, Anna must cross a glacial forest. However, the forest is haunted by a new resident, a terrifying bearded giant. All animals that cross his path disappear and, of course, the little mole’s journey will lead straight to him… but the giant’s massive beard is more welcoming than it may seem at first.
- Left alone in the depths of summer, Malo and Zoé are trying their best to catch their mother’s elusive eye.
硬 币 | The Coin, by Siqi Song (United States, 2019)
6 min. 42 sec., in Chinese with English subtitles
- During the Chinese New Year holidays, finding a coin inside a dumpling is a sign of a blessed year ahead. On her journey to a new country, a young woman loses a jar full of the lucky coins she collected during her childhood. Her new life begins with a search to find a new coin.
Freeze Frame, by Soetkin Verstegen (Belgium/Germany, 2019)
5 min., without words
Website and teaser
- Freeze frame: the most absurd technique since the invention of the moving image. Through an elaborate process of duplicating the same image over and over again, it creates the illusion of stillness. In this short film, identical figures perform the hopeless task of preserving blocks of ice. The repetitive movements bring the animals captured inside back to life.
- Set in the Bronx, in the 1950s during the McCarthy era, everybody strives to conform. Michael, a gay twenty-something-year old mouse, hides his true identity while he works as a tailor. When Isaac enters the shop one day, he offers the escape and love Michael craves. In his confined apartment, Michael becomes tormented by the memories of Isaac’s tragic death. Michael’s memories and flashbacks are triggered when he notices Isaac’s jacket draped on the back of a chair. Haunted by the solace Isaac once offered, Michael struggles to come to terms with his loss.
- My mother’s dreams have always been strong premonitions for important moments in my life. I rely on her dreams more than on any religion.