20th Animation Division Excellence Award
A Love Story
Animated short film
Anushka Kishani NAANAYAKKARA [United Kingdom]
This stop-motion animation tells the story of two characters who fall in love and must overcome a darkness that slowly overtakes their flawless world. Although the tale delves into the struggles of a relationship, the undercurrent of tenderness between the protagonists permeates the work and leaves a lasting impression. The creators’ choice to use wool yarn as their principal material allows them to meticulously depict the emotional depth of the characters. Because the narrative is straightforward, the inimitable eyes of the characters, the backgrounds in the scenes, lights, sounds, and music are all fully perceived, working in harmony to convey complex emotions. As a result, the work is like a painting that moves. A variety of experimental techniques, such as filming puppets against a background that employs a seven-layered glass multiplane with various materials inserted on each plane, are put to good use in skillfully transitioning from scene to scene.
Reason for Award
The wool yarn that fills the screen is truly fascinating. The unique texture of the wool, the intertwining of the yarns, and the delicate quivering of each strand are all mesmerizing, and before realizing it, the spellbound audience is captivated by this strange, mysterious world; something voyeuristic about this film makes it even more difficult to take our eyes off it. The film opens with the camera dollying in as if taking a peek into a tiny world through a microscope, a perfect setup for starting a journey into this unknown world. A remarkable display of the director’s skill, the use of changes in color to express emotions and the distinctive ethereal sounds of intermingled voices are both employed effectively to reinforce the film’s ingenious otherworldliness. This is a work filled with artistic creativity, emitting extraordinary beauty through textures only short animation films can create. (MORINO Kazuma)