Featuring 18 Amazing Computer Animation Shorts From Around The World!

‘COMPUTER ANIMATION MARVELS’ is from the award winning animation artists on four continents comes a spectacular collection of computer animated short films from today's top CGI artists and storytellers. Watch the multi-award winning film “Bingo,” a reality-bending take on an identity crisis. Also included is another instalment of “Luxo Jr.,” with animation from PIXAR, the creators of ‘Toy Story.’ In ‘Pets’ you'll be surprised to hear the innermost secrets of our furry friends. Study the hilarious scientific principles involved in “The Physics of Cartoons,” and enjoy 13 other funny and thought provoking films from the world's top computer animators. ‘COMPUTER ANIMATION MARVELS’ is a blending of high-tech and high art you won't want to miss. Presented by Odyssey Productions, creators of the internationally acclaimed “The Mind's Eye” series of computer animation videos.

This compilation video features 17 acclaimed computer animated short subjects representing the work of award-winning filmmakers from around the globe. Titles include "The Physics of Cartoons: Part One," "Bingo," Pets," "H2O," "Narrow Margin for Error," "rockpaperscissors," and "The Hungry One." Plus the amazing bonus animated short “Jakata.”

Director: (uncredited)

Producers: Adrian Turcotte, Steven Churchill and Tonya Rohatyn

Composer: (uncredited)

Image Resolution: 1080i

Audio: English: 2.0 Dolby Digital Stereo Audio  

Subtitles: None

Running Time: 57 minutes

Region: NTSC

Number of discs: 1

Studio: Image Entertainment / Odyssey Productions

Andrew's DVD Review: ‘COMPUTER ANIMATION MARVELS’ [1999] Image Entertainment and Odyssey Productions has now produced this amazing and unique DVD that contains 18 computer generated short films from around the world, including the multiple award-winning film “Bingo.” The DVD has been created by the creators of the acclaimed “The Mind’s Eye” series of computer animation videos, and once again, this release offers a wide variety of shot animated films.

Watching these amazing computer animated shorts like these – and I think it is important to understand that none of these films has been done for commercial reasons. Most of the time, these short films are created by artists who simply wish to express themselves through the medium, or who feel they have something to contribute to the creative community in general. As such we are talking about Art, and Art as we all know is highly subjective. To some people Picasso has been a creative genius who managed remarkably well to combine Art with social statements in his pictures.

With all that in mind, with these Image Entertainment and Odyssey Productions compilation of shorts on this DVD, aAs harsh as it may sound, the content ranges from rather poor to outstanding with everything in between on the technical side. But let me point out that in these animated short films, being the very personal pieces of work of the according artists that they are, the underlying idea is just as important as the execution, which then makes some of the technically weaker entries quite exciting again. All in all it is a very interesting mix of technique, styles and execution with some very clear highlights. “The Persecution” is one of them, a heroic fantasy short film with heroes and monsters, or “Ticked Off.” A well done sarcastic marriage-observation, this film is shows some technical excellence combined with witty humour. “The Hungry One” is also a very good and whimsical film about a group of penguins doing ski-jumps. Also one of the more charming entries on the DVD disc is “Bowtie Blues,” a story about snowmen that is as funny as it is excellent.

On the other end of the spectrum there is the animated short film like “The Sitter,” a rather artsy film with a very dark and gritty look, or “Last Call” a great short film that explores the life of bar glasses once the guests have left and call it a night. “The Physics of Cartoons” is also a great entry, exemplarily showcasing some of the most commonly used tricks and exaggerations in cartoon movies. Some of the animated shorts are not nearly as good, however showing technical problems and a serious lack of skills in a variety of forms. In some segments the animation is inadequate while in others yet the texture mapping is done without displacement maps or bump maps, leaving the entire geometry flat and unattractive. Add to that inadequately placed lighting and all the film can count upon is its ingenuity and the story.

Apart from all these short animated films there are two short animated films on this disc however, that are just amazing and truly stand out, making this disc worth its money all by themselves. The first one is “Jataka,” a short animated film with a strong Asian flair and that of course is in the BONUS ANIMATED SHORT so please check it out.

The other amazing short animated films to look out for are a clear favourite is entitled “Bingo,” which is a multiple-award winning short film. The film is technically perfect and very slick in its visual presentation. Masterfully playing with the possibilities computer generated graphics tools put into artist’s hands, this film is an example of what modern software can do for the right people. The models are highly detailed and very articulate. The film goes for an exaggerated, but still photo-realistic, look, and succeeds quite well. The circus environment used for the film is perfect to show off the vibrant colours and explain the use off sharply defined spotlights that cast hard shadows on the characters, which ultimately enhance the overall look of the scenes. The animation in the film is great and the content itself just outright funny. So sit back enjoy these wonderful and amazing short animated films.

The DVD contains 17 segments that include the following:

Pets [1996] (Director: John Lally and Valerie Mih for the University of Southern California)

The Persecution [1997] (Director: Victor Garrido)

Vache Folle [1997] (Director: Samuel Tourneux) (Producer: Sup Info Com) (Music: The Devine Comedy)

Ticked Off [1998] (Supervised by Ron Crown, Casey Kwan and Alan Harrison for Vancouver Film School) (Voices: Bruce Warren and Jamie Oliver) (Music: Hex)

Carved Journey [1997] (Director: Jin Park) (Music: HanMil Kim)

The Hungry One [1998] (Director: Steve Rawlins)

The Physics of Cartoons – Part 1 [1997] (Director: Steph Greenberg) (Producer: Kellie-Bea Rainey)

H2O [1998] (Director: Aaron J. Hartline)

Bowtie Blues [1997] (Director: Terry Sanderson for Vancouver Film School)

CPU [1998] (Director: Wayne Gilbert) (Producer: Wayne Gilbert)

Last Call [1997] (Director: Jaime Castañeda) 

rockpaperscissors [1998] (Producer: Matt Rhodes)

A Narrow Martian of Error [1997] (Director: Marcus Hart and Angela DiMeglio for Ringling School of Art and Design)

Love and Rockets [1998] (Supervised by Ron Crown)

Fly Hard [1997] (Director: Gino Della-Savia, Peter Haralabous, Greg Tareta and Nick Michaleski for Vancouver Film School)

The Sitter [1997] (Supervised by Lian-Yuan Wang)

Bingo [1998] (Director: Chris Landreth) (Producer: Penny Wilson) (Music: Jim Lamarche)

BONUS ANIMATED SHORT: Jataka [1998] [1080i] [1.37:1] [6:58] This short animated film “Jakata” has a strong Asian flair. It shows us a man approaching a cave in a small boat where he enters the mysterious cave that is trapped with all sorts of magical traps. The man avoids the traps but is eventually stalked by a ferocious looking creature. The rest, you have to see for yourself to find out what happens. What is really great about this film is the atmospheric use of light and architecture. It looks very much like a computer rendered Hong Kong fantasy movie, with volumetric fog and lighting effects and plenty of coloured light sources that are effectively placed. (Director: Neal Nellans)  (Animators: Dominick Cecere and Jeff Baker)

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DVD Image Quality – Image Entertainment and Odyssey Productions presents us the spectacular ‘COMPUTER ANIMATION MARVELS’ with a wonderful colourful 1080i image and some of the animation shorts are the best visual presentation, and the entire package is very, very sharp. Each computer animation detail is spot on, delivering a sharp, detailed and highly impressive presentation throughout, looking perfect during even the numerous fast moving and heavily populated sequences with quite the plethora of activity occurring on screen. Overall, this is another very nice DVD video presentation.

DVD Audio Quality – Image Entertainment and Odyssey Productions brings us the amazing ‘COMPUTER ANIMATION MARVELS’ with a really nice 2.0 Dolby Digital Stereo Audio experience. As expected small detailed sound effects are crisp and background noise is unnoticeable and the composed background music really sound good and really matches to mood of each of the short animated films. Overall, this audio soundtrack for each computer animation and contributes really well to give you a great deal of fun to viewing this highly enjoyable animated DVD feature.

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Finally, with this ‘COMPUTER ANIMATION MARVELS.’ to me it gave me a great deal of enjoyment watching these creative short animated films from the amazing and inventive Image Entertainment and Odyssey Productions DVD Video release. If you enjoy these kinds of almost experimental films, then please check out this DVD as you will not be disappointed. It is a great deal of fun, visionary art and cool technology, combined with the occasional something truly amazing and totally unique. Don’t worry if you don’t fully understand each one of those short animated films, I Just enjoy them for what they are, artistic expressions of some very talented and creative minds. Highly Recommended! 

Andrew C. Miller – Your Ultimate No.1 Film Aficionado 
Le Cinema Paradiso 
United Kingdom

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