Boogie-Doodle

National Film Board of Canada (1940)

Boogie-Doodle is a 1940 drawn-on-film visual music short by Norman McLaren, set to the boogie-woogie music of African-American jazz pianist Albert Ammons.

Though released by the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) in 1941, Boogie-Doodle was actually made by McLaren in New York City in 1940, a year before he was invited by John Grierson to Canada to found the NFB’s animation unit. McLaren, who had been influenced by the hand-painted films of Len Lye, was in New York exploring the technique on a grant from the Solomon Guggenheim Foundation, creating Boogie-Doodle along with three other cameraless films: DotsLoops and Stars and Stripes.

The animation in Boogie-Doodle coincides exactly with Ammon’s musical piece, with McLaren’s animation beginning at the very first bar and concluding at the final note.

Et Cetera

– Jan Švankmajer (1967)

Unlike most of Jan Švankmajer’s films, ‘Et Cetera’ uses 2d animation. It’s a clever and somehow saddening film: although the three little stories are extremely simple, they seem to tell something about the condition humaine. ‘Et Cetera’ uses great electronic music, which adds to the surrealistic atmosphere.

Caninabis

National Film Board of Canada (1979)

Kaj Pindal’s animated short from the late 1970s features a canine narcotics officer who burns out after sampling a little too much product. Driven by his love of cannabis, a street dog displays incredible promise for the drug squad when he chases down a local dealer. He makes headlines worldwide as he takes on smugglers and crime lords. But when his drug habit and his work inevitably collide, a clear message emerges: dogs and cannabis don’t mix.