Short of the Week

Best Animation | SOTW Awards 2012!

Playlist / January 30, 2012

Best 3D

Sci-Fi about Other Worlds in 3D Animation
Jesús Orellana / 10 min / Spain
Absolutely Stunning. Is it from SQUARE? PRODUCTION I.G? No, the most perfect realization of the anime-style in 3D comes from a single young animator out of Spain.

The most ambitious visual attack on the senses we’ve seen in a long time, Rosa brings a new type of action to the animated world. On first blush, you might pass Rosa off as just a glorified fight sequence, but look deeper and you’ll find an intricately built world with a backstory that’s begging to be told. Crafted by Jesús Orellana, an illustrator who taught himself to animate in one year, Rosa embodies the dream of short filmmakers everywhere, as 20th Century Fox ponied up the funds to turn Rosa into a live-action Hollywood feature with Jesús at the helm.

Best Experimental

Dark Comedy about Nothing in 3D Animation
David OReilly / 17 min / Germany
Enter the disturbing world of David OReilly (Please Say Something) for a spin into low-poly, subconscious madness.

Please Say Something was a 2010 favorite, but David OReilly’s followup, The External World feels like his opus. The film takes both his low-poly 3D aesthetic and entropic story lines to new heights. Like Don Hertzfeldt before him, David’s refreshing irreverence for 3D technology and modern society has made him a new cult hero in animation.

Best Stop-Motion

Adventure about Other Worlds in Stop-Motion
Tom Jenkins / 3 min / UK
When everyone leaves for the night, the objects in the office take over the computers to experience the outside world in this stop-motion animation powered by Google Street View.

Combining the clever use of desk props, lighting, and Google Street View made Address is Approximate the film that everyone wishes they’d made. But the magic Tom Jenkins (The Theory) brought is the touching story of dreaming big in an ever-shrinking world.

Best Student

Drama about Life & Society in 3D Animation
Matthias Hoegg / 7 min / UK
In the future, technology may change, but the patterns and routines of daily life stay constant—until we disrupt them.

There’s a delicate beauty in the rhythms of Thursday—whether it’s the images inspired by Native American quilts or the editing cuts timed carefully to the beat of the score. The RCA thesis film made Matthias a hot ticket at agencies on both sides of the Atlantic. He later joined the London studio, Beakus.

Best Traditional

Drama about Love in Animation
Julia Pott / 4 min / UK
The mysteries of the heart are front in center in London-animator Julia Pott's examination of love, faded.

It’s incredibly difficult to approach something that’s already been done hundreds of thousands of times and do it in a way that feels like you’re seeing it for the first time. Illustrator Julia Pott does just that by bringing her distinctive, fantastical characters to life in Howard. On top of that, she manages to tell a touching modern story about the silent tragedy of a slow fading love.

Honorable Mentions

Best Festival Film to Finally Drop Online—The Man with Beautiful Eyes
Eleven years after hitting the festival circuit and winning the BAFTA for Best Animated Short, Jonathan Hodgson’s child-like animation is as beautiful as ever. And in a year that saw the Occupy movement and a growing distrust for authority, the story is more relevant than ever.

Best Chase Sequence—Hambuster
Chase sequences are always a crowd pleaser, but it’s much more difficult to make this classic movie staple feel fresh. How about being chased by a man-eating hamburger? Yeah, that’s new. Also spectacular is the creative action and camera work that you won’t see elsewhere in animation.

Best Blatant Self-Promotion—The Thomas Beale Cipher
We launched our film a year ago using a our now famous launch plan strategy. And while Jason and I were happy to exclude it, our fellow contributors convinced us it deserved a spot here, so here it is. Happy?

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Finding and showcasing the best online short films since 2007.
  • http://www.andrewsallen.com Andrew S Allen

    If I were to add another honorable mention for BIGGEST TEASE (film released online only to be pulled off days later), it would easily go to the animated WWII-era dog fight film, PATHS OF HATE.