Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Best Animated Short - 2003
Welcome to my review of the Oscar nominated animated short films from 2003. So we are in 2003. The big news this year was that The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King won all 11 nominations, thus tying it with Ben-Hur and Titanic for the films with the most awards. (West Side Story could have been on the list if only it had won Best Adapted Screenplay over Judgment at Nuremberg . :() I remember posting the results on Nintendo NSider after the awards. I'm pretty certain I included the Animated Short award, but I glossed over it as I didn't care about the award back then. How things have changed.
Before I saw the short, I originally thought that Nibbles was about a cute little squirrel named Nibbles, possibly because it was nominated alongside Gone Nutty starring Scrat, another squirrel. And if you list all of the nominees by year, another rodent-centered short, Gopher Broke, would be under it. But nope, Nibbles is actually a reflection about the director's fishing trip with his sons, with a rather unique highlight (that explains the title). After a quiet opening credits sequence, the film moves at a frantic pace. We follow that family car as it travels from restaurant to restaurant to snack stall to snack stall before making it to the lake. At almost each stop the characters find some way to enjoy a meal, and it's not necessarily limited to the people. The animation is simple and garish, almost as if somebody just slapped the images onto the page, which fits in with the hectic nature of the film. The sound is also quite appropriate, with the sound of munching and slurping and biting alongside a Deliverance-like banjo tune that gets faster as the short goes on. Director Chris Hinton also included a fun little nod to his previous nominated film, Blackfly from 1991. It's not anything incredibly deep (although you could say it's a portrait of gluttony in modern society if you so choose), but it's a fun little film.
Well, it's finally done. All an all it's not a bad set of nominees. Harvie Krumpet walked away the winner and I haven't any complaints about that. I wouldn't have minded if Destino won, but in my opinion they made the right choice.
My rankings (in terms of quality)
Harvie Krumpet > Destino > Boundin' > Nibbles > Gone Nutty
My rankings (in terms of preference)
Harvie Krumpet > Gone Nutty > Destino > Nibbles > Boundin'