THE EMPEROR’S NIGHTINGALE
CÍSAŘŮV SLAVÍK
1948, 72 min, Czechoslovakia, Dir: Jiří Trnka, Miloš Makovec

Trnka’s adaptation of the classic Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale about a Chinese emperor entranced by the song of a mechanical nightingale is an enchanting animated jewel box awash in hallucinatory storybook imagery.


THE TALE OF THE FOX
LE ROMAN DE RENARD
1930, 65 min, France, Dir: Irene Starewitch, Ladislas Starewitch

One of the first animated feature films in cinema history (it premiered a full year before Disney’s SNOW WHITE), and the only film of this scope that Starewitch would make, THE TALE OF THE FOX is a masterpiece of the form. Master Fox, the forest’s utmost trickster, harasses the king upon whose lands he lives. Following a particularly wily hoax, however, the king orders Master Fox to be arrested and brought before the court. Inspired by a medieval French fable, THE TALE OF THE FOX is a ceaselessly inventive and wondrous film.


ISLE OF DOGS
2018, Fox Searchlight, 101 min, USA/Germany, Dir: Wes Anderson

This animated gem from writer-director Wes Anderson tells the story of Atari Kobayashi, 12-year-old ward to corrupt Mayor Kobayashi. When, by executive decree, all the canine pets of Megasaki City are exiled to a vast garbage dump, Atari sets off alone in a miniature Junior Turbo Prop and flies to Trash Island in search of his bodyguard-dog, Spots. There, with the assistance of a pack of newly found mongrel friends, he begins an epic journey that will decide the fate and future of the entire prefecture. The star-studded voice cast includes Frances McDormand, Scarlett Johansson, Greta Gerwig, Bryan Cranston, Bill Murray and Jeff Goldblum.


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