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“Actual” Movies

7 March, 2008 (11:52am) | Blog

In the early days of cinema, there was a branch of film that appealed mostly to children through the humor, playfulness, and innocence of animation. Pioneered by Walt Disney, this kind of art has been widely loved and adored by all ages, parents and children alike, for many generations. In spite of the fact that we generally enjoy animation, most people generally looked upon those movies as “cartoons” (rather than “actual” movies) that were geared for kids. Not adults.

Pixar has been the leader in educating the stubborn adult public that a cartoon can be just as enjoyable and full of meaning as a “real” movie. Sometimes even more so. But still, even Pixar films are for kids. The change is that they are also for adults.

This mindset has been in place so long that when an animated film comes out we automatically think “Oh, yay! A fun family film! Honey, get the kids, it’s movie time!” Slowly, though, we are more and more going to see animated (mostly Pixar) films without bringing the kids, and accepting that we can have a good time and get just as much food for thought out of The Incredibles as we can The Godfather. (Don’t judge me for comparing those. They’re both good, and you know it.)

With the rising acceptance of animated features as “actual movies” instead of “kids movies” more and more filmmakers are willing to add more adult themes to their “cartoons” than, say, 25 years ago. This cannot be more evident than in the recent Oscar nominee Persepolis — a film geared specifically towards not-kids.

Persepolis is an animated film about dictatorship, revolution, communism, and capitalism. And coming of age. Does that strike you as an odd subject for a cartoon? Here’s a hint: It’s not a cartoon. It’s a movie.


Comment from seven
Time: 7 March 2008, 3:34 pm

That looks like a really weird movie. I probably wouldn’t like it. :/

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