Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Oscar Winner Predictions: Best Animated Short

The competition:
Bear Story (B)
This is a sweet and well-animated tale of a lonely bear remembering happy beginnings and miserable endings through a marvelously lively portable presentation. The artistry involved is the best part, and the sad, tender plot makes it hard to shake.

Prologue (D)
The only thing I can compliment about this short, pointlessly brutal picture is that it does a magnificent job of manipulating space using animation. Its content, however, is entirely deplorable and unnecessary, making this unquestionably the worst of the bunch.

Sanjay's Super Team (B-)
This short played before "The Good Dinosaur." It acted like an inspirational, enjoyable fable about a child's imagination and what is important to his father, but I found it to be a bit of a letdown, engaging enough but hardly worthy of celebration.

We Can't Live Without Cosmos (B+)
This one is my clear favorite, an endearing tale of two lifelong friends training to be astronauts. The absence of dialogue is perfectly matched by inspiring visuals and a succesful capturing of the emotions of these two buddies with their heads in the clouds.

World of Tomorrow (C-)
I don't even know what to say about this odd, off-putting short. It starts out interesting, with a girl meeting a robotic future version of her consciousness, and then gets really dark and strange, and not in a good way. The animation is all over the place, purposely, and what should be a productive thought experiment is just puzzling and peculiar.

Previous winners: Feast, Mr. Hublot, Paperman, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, The Lost Thing, Logorama, Le Maison en Petits Cubes, Peter and the Wolf

Who should win: I would enthusiastically select “We Can’t Live Without Cosmos.”
Who will win: I think it's a race between Bear Story and "We Can't Live Without Cosmos." My money is on the former. Like all the other nominees except “Sanjay’s Super Team,” it’s still depressing but also clever and endearing.

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