Oh no, I got behind on the blog and didn’t write about these.
I tend to forget shorts pretty fast, so I’m using web sources to recall which of these was which.

Me and My Moulton (Torill Kove)
Narrated memoir of three girls growing up in a normal town with not-normal parents – they are art and design obsessed, and when the kids ask for bicycles they finally get a weird one the proud parents have mail-ordered. Kove won best picture in 2006 for The Danish Poet.

Feast (Patrick Osborne)
We saw this before, playing with Big Hero 6, and I forgot to mention it then. Dog’s-eye-view of food, food, doomed human relationship, more food. Osborne worked on Bolt, Tangled and Wreck-It Ralph.

The Bigger Picture (Daisy Jacobs)
One of my favorite things: wall drawings and real objects interacting, 2D and 3D blending, like the drawn animations on paper-mache backgrounds in Rocks In My Pockets, or in a different sense, the dimension-based drama of Rabbit and Deer. But while I love the idea, it’s still a drab little story about fighting siblings and a dying parent.

A Single Life (Blaauw/Oprins/Roggeveen)
My favorite – also the shortest. Woman puts a 45 on the player, and finds that if she skips to different parts of the record, she travels to different times in her own life. IMDB claims the story was conceived on a drunken college night.

The Dam Keeper (Kondo & Tsutsumi)
Lonely pig runs the windmill that keeps the darkness at bay, but nobody in town loves or respects him so one day he lets the darkness in. Both directors worked on Pixar movies. This was cool, dark and imaginative, so naturally there’s talk of sequels and franchises and live-action remakes.

Sweet Cocoon (Bernard/Bruget/Duret/Marco/Puiraveau)
A student film, I think. A caterpillar is fat!

Duet (Glen Keane)
Keane has been in animation forever, was a lead character animator on many Disney features, and this is his first solo film. A boy is sporty, and a girl is graceful, and they like each other, all in one continual, fluid animation. Katy thought it reinforced oppressive gender roles, but that was before she saw the new Cinderella.

Footprints (Bill Plympton)
Moebius-strip footprint-following detective story.

Bus Story (Tali)
Another memoir, this time of a young woman who dreams of being a bus driver, so rents a shitty bus from its grumpy owner. Tali made La Pirouette, which I saw in 2002 and liked, though I can’t remember at all.

“Why do they do it, Snitter? I’m not a bad dog.”

I didn’t have any more horror movies handy on my laptop, so since it was Shocktober (actually Shocktember – I started early) I picked the non-horror movie with the most horrific title… Plague Dogs!

Same team as Watership Down, but not nearly as popular due to its reputation of being as depressing as Grave of the Fireflies. I wouldn’t go that far, but the story isn’t a heartwarming one. Black Snitter (voiced by John Hurt a couple years after The Elephant Man) and brown-and-white Rowf (TV’s Christopher Benjamin) escape from a cruel animal testing lab, wherein Snitter is regularly drowned then revived, and little Rowf receives brain experiments (he wears a cap to cover scars atop his head). Out in the wild they tenuously befriend a fox (James Bolam of O Lucky Man!) who helps them find (hunt) food. But rumors spread among the townsfolk that the dogs who have been eating their sheep and chickens (I know it’s a rural location, but is TV/radio news really so slow that they have daily stories on two escaped dogs that have been “terrorizing sheep”?) are infected with bubonic plague (no evidence that’s true) so lab personnel hunt them down.

from watery grave:

to watery grave:

Good animation, especially the movement of the animals. We get good little side plots, like Rowf’s tendency to accidentally kill people, making it more than just a story to bum out animal-rights activists. Maybe I’m inhuman (or incanine) but I didn’t find it to be the most depressing movie. I didn’t find Colossal Youth or The Cranes Are Flying depressing either, but In Praise of Love and The Hangover I did. The most depressing kind of movie isn’t a sad one, it’s a crappy one.

Saw Michelle Williams before in Brokeback.
Can’t recall her in Synecdoche or I’m Not There.
Very good performance.

She drives a car, has a dog, rations cash, seeks Alaska.

Car breaks.
Arrested for shoplifting.
Dog disappears.

Pleasant man named Wally played a drugstore security guard.

The movie credits would like to mention Will Patton.
He is the prestige.
Played a mechanic.
Last seen in Road House 2 (ouch)

Larry Fessenden, directed Habit, plays a crazy person.
Apparently he does that a lot.
Cabin Fever Part 2? That won’t be good.
Did anyone know there are two sequels to the Pulse remake?

Movie is well paced, well shot.
Does not make me as sleepy as Old Joy.
A pleasure to watch.

The dog lives.
It’s so cold in Alaska.

Colloque de chiens is the real title, Dog Symposium is the title on the subtitles. The movie is a story told to each other by dogs through a series of stills, La Jetee-like, with quavery synth music and dry narration. The dogs are shot live-action with natural sound.

Dogs on a vacant lot bark at each other over the credits.


“The woman you call mum isn’t your mother” Monique turned pale on hearing those words from a school friend. Madame Duvivier tells little Monique that Marie, the woman who often comes by, is the real mother. Marie tells Monique that she doesn’t know who her father is. Monique flees Bordeaux. “From now on, sex and domination shall rule Monique’s life.” Monique is a nurse, has illicit affairs with her male patients. Christmas eve 1966 she dances with rich, 65-year-old Hubert, intends to seduce him for his money. Monique becomes a “cold and dry voiced whore” with “an urge for revenge”.

Dogs bark in apartment windows and balconies.


Monique falls for the TV repairman, Henri, who she remembers from her hometown. She starts a new life, opening the Joli Mont cafe, but “in fact she’s buying her own death”. Henri helps her run it. Alice, a friend from home, comes to visit, blackmails Monique to not tell Henri about her sad past, has an affair and falls in love with Henri. When the three are in the park, Monique kills herself and her 3-year-old son Paul-Henri. Dogs.


“Henri’s only option is to marry Alice, his wife’s intimate friend, who dominates him. In a way, Alice was buying her own death.” Alice tells about both women’s pasts on their wedding night. Henri has an urge for revenge. He grabs an empty bottle of wine, which turns into a knife on the images, and kills her. Dogs. Henri cuts up Alice’s body and hides the parts all over town, which switches to live-action for a bit, with no dogs but the sound of children singing.


Back to stills. Henri goes to Marseilles and falls into some shady dealings with gangsters, is jailed for 5 years. Nurses a sick cellmate with whom he has an affair. The police draw a map of the body parts they’ve found, which form a circle, the Joli Mont cafe at the center. “The universal geometric laws gave him away”. Live action street shots, adults singing.


Stills. Mr. Benami tells Henri about sex-change operations in Casablanca, “the perfect disguise”. “Henri Odile has become a charming young lady.” Christmas eve 1974 she’s invited out by a rich, 65-year old man, intends to seduce him for money. Odile becomes a prostitute. Goes back to Montsouris, sees the Joli Mont is for sale, buys and runs it, adopts young Luigi. One evening, 18-year-old Fernand comes to the bar with a bottle of wine / knife / empty glass, kills Odile. Dogs barking. At school, Luigi is pestered by his friends. “Your mother was killed by her lover.” “That’s not true. The woman you call my mother wasn’t my mother.” Credits.


This movie is as old as I am. I watched it three times in one weekend… it is fantastic.

The editor and composer both still work with Ruiz (That Day, Klimt, etc), the cinematographer is now with Olivier Assayas, and the actress (!) who played Henri is now a press agent. Everyone involved still alive and well, including Ruiz, who has a euro-art-meets-quentin-tarantino cast of actors lined up for his next film.