Director: Yu Jin-hee, Kwon O-seong, et al.
Studio: KD Media
About This DVD
Even for those who avoid animated movies like the plague, "If You Were Me : Anima Vision" might be worth making an exception for. The six animated shorts bundled together here each offer a lively, spirited and unique take on the theme of discrimination and the experience of being different.
The one that perhaps stands out most is "Flesh and Bone" directed by Amy Lee. The Korean title literally translates as "The Chubby Big-Boned Girl" -- a phrase that suggests knockabout comedy but in fact encapsulates the pent-up frustration of the main character, which she modeled on herself. Completely fresh and new, the short gently pillories superficiality and the obsession with outward appearance, and it is its charm that gets its point across to the audience so effectively.
"Be a Human Being" looks at the way young Koreans are barely treated as human beings before they get to university. "Bicycle Trip" focuses on the discrimination experienced by foreign workers in Korea. Soft lines and a striking watercolor background distinguish "Daydream" with its quiet depiction of our double standards in dealing with people with disability. It homes in on the daily life of a father with a daughter whose hands and feet are deformed.
"At Her House" paints a devastating picture of gender inequality within a marriage, while "Animal Farm" relies on the rough-and-ready feel of stop-motion clay animation to create a satire of bullying and mob dynamics.
The most familiar name here would probably be Lee Seong-gang, who won the top prize at the 2002 Annecy International Animation Festival in France with "My Beautiful Girl, Mari." Lee’s contribution, "Bicycle Trip," is done in a gentle, poetic style reminiscent of his award-winning feature film.
Lee’s film revolves around an ownerless bicycle whose story we pick up in bits and pieces as it wheels itself around town. The resulting reverse narrative, which has to do with migrant workers, comes off as delicate and highly effective.
A few other works show a personal and intimate animation style similar to Lee’s, and they end up being the more successful out of the group. "Day Dream," done in simple watercolor wash, tempers its social criticism regarding the discrimination of the physically challenged with a sweet scene of a man taking a nap with his disabled daughter.
Made by a team of animators, "At Her House," about a woman who is taken for granted by her husband, uses a simple hand-drawn technique to render the characters and their environment. But its graphic simplicity belies a complex sense of space and story.
"If You were Me : Anima Vision" gives viewers an interesting glimpse into artistic styles and techniques from the local animation world. And, of course, the heartfelt message behind the films is an important one that makes the whole "If You Were Me" series worth checking out.
|Audio Format:||DD 5.1 Surround, DD 2.0 Stereo|
|Video Format:||Widescreen 1.85:1 (Anamorphic)|
|Availability:||Usually ships in 5-10 days|