Jan Å vankmajer (1982)

Dimensions of Dialogue is a 1983 Czechoslovak animated short film directed by Jan Å vankmajer. It is 14 minutes long and created with stop motion.

The animation is divided into three sections. “Eternal conversation” shows Arcimboldo-like heads gradually reducing each other to bland copies; “Passionate discourse” shows a clay man and woman who dissolve into one another sexually, then quarrel and reduce themselves to a frenzied, boiling pulp; and “Exhaustive discussion” consists of two elderly clay heads who extrude various objects on their tongues (toothbrush and toothpaste; shoe and shoelaces, etc.) and intertwine them in various combinations.

Terry Gilliam selected the film as one of the ten best animated films of all time.

The Brothers Quay (1986)

Illustration by Bruno Schulz

The Street of Crocodiles is a 21-minute-long stop-motion animation short subject directed and produced by the Brothers Quay and released in 1986.

The Street of Crocodiles was originally a short story written by Bruno Schulz, from a story collection published under that title in English translation. Rather than literally representing the childhood memoirs of Schulz, the animators used the story’s mood and psychological undertones as inspiration for their own creation.

Inside a box full of curio, a puppet who is recently freed from his strings explores a dusty and forlorn commercial area. The explorer becomes ensnared into miniature tailor shop by baby-faced dolls.

Directed by Stephen Quay, Timothy Quay, and Weiser Quay.

Tim Burton (1984)

Happy Halloween!

Frankenweenie is a 1984 featurette directed by Tim Burton and co-written by Burton with Leonard Ripps. It is both a parody and homage to the 1931 film Frankenstein based on Mary Shelley’s 1818 novel Frankenstein. Burton later directed a feature-length stop-motion animated remake of Frankenweenie, released in 2012.

Tim Burton (1982)

Happy Halloween!

Vincent is a 1982 stop motion short horror film written, designed, and directed by Tim Burton. It’s produced by Rick Heinrichs. It is the second Disney horror film, the first being The Watcher in the Woods. At approximately six minutes in length, there is currently no individual release of the film except for a few bootleg releases. It can be found on the 2008 Special Edition and Collector’s Edition DVDs of The Nightmare Before Christmas as a bonus feature and on the Cinema16 DVD American Short Films.

The film is narrated by actor Vincent Price, a lifelong idol and inspiration for Burton. From this relationship, Price would go on to appear in Burton’s Edward Scissorhands. Price later made the following statement:

Vincent was the most gratifying thing that ever happened. It was immortality — better than a star on Hollywood Boulevard.”

-Vincent Price

Hani Dombe & Tom Kouris (2016)

Award Winning Animated Stop Motion Short Film

Lili refuses to let go of her childhood and fights a sandstorm that threatens to take it away. In the heart of the storm she rediscovers the joy of childhood, but is forced to choose between illusion and reality.

Music & sound: Gil Landau

Supported by: Israel Lottery Council For Culture & Arts, Gesher multicultural film fund

Will Vinton (1985)

Join Mark Twain on his airship to meet Halley’s Comet!

The Adventures of Mark Twain is a 1985 American stop motion claymation fantasy film directed by Will Vinton and starring James Whitmore. It received a limited theatrical release in May 1985.

The film features a series of vignettes extracted from several of Mark Twain’s works, built around a plot that features Twain’s attempts to keep his “appointment” with Halley’s Comet. Twain and three children — Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, and Becky Thatcher — travel on an airship between various adventures.

The concept was inspired by a famous quote by the author:

“I came in with Halley’s Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don’t go out with Halley’s Comet. The Almighty has said, no doubt: ‘Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together.'”

Twain died on April 21, 1910, one day after Halley’s Comet reached perihelion in 1910.

Included are sketches taken from The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The Mysterious Stranger, The Diaries of Adam and Eve (Letters from the Earth), Captain Stormfield’s Visit to Heaven, and, a rendering of Twain’s first story, The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County. References are made to his other works, including The Damned Human Race.

This animated film was shot in Portland, Oregon.