I love stop motion animation

If you know me at all, you know I looooove stop motion animation. Especially clay animation. I love the amount of effort that’s put in the process and the end results are always stunning. As a kid, my favourite movie wasĀ The Nightmare Before ChristmasĀ (1993); I’ve always been impressed by the way it looks. I wasĀ blown away by the technique. One of my biggest dreams is to work on one of these movies one day. In the last few years, I fell in love with the stop motion animation studio Laika (you can check out their website:Ā www.laika.com). They are the people behindĀ CoralineĀ (2009),Ā ParaNormanĀ (2012),Ā TheĀ BoxtrollsĀ (2014) and the upcomingĀ Kubo and the Two StringsĀ (2016), which I am very excited to see. They always bring such amazing characters to life, and fantastic stories too. I don’t think I’ve ever liked a company that much before.

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But stop motion/clay animation is not only used to make animated movies; some moviemakers use it to create their special effects, and it’s amazing. A few examples are the originalĀ The Evil Dead trilogyĀ (1981-1992),Ā BeetlejuiceĀ (1988),Ā Alice (1988) and The Life Aquatic with Steve ZissouĀ (2004). Some people think it’s too campy or just plain bad special effects, but I think it’s great! It adds a lot to these movies, creating their own universes set between dream and reality. I love when moviemakers are not afraid to mix different genres and styles in a movie because sometime, you get very interesting results.

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All in all, I’m a stop motion fan and I wish you can at least appreciate the amount of work and effort that is put in this type of animation, whether you like it or not. And I’m excited forĀ Kubo and the Two Strings, it comes out a few days after my birthday, so I guess I’llĀ be able to convince someone to come with me as a birthday present.


Childhood favourites

Here’s a list, once again in no specific order, of movies I really enjoyed as a kid. Some I still do, others I haven’t seen in years, but they were all the best movies ever at one point in my life.

Space JamĀ (1996)


I have never been the biggest Looney Tunes fan, nor have I ever enjoyed basketball, but for some reason, this movie really did it for me. I have to admit, I haven’t seen it in a very long time, so I don’t know if it’s actually all that good. But as a kid, this movie was just amazing. I understood that cartoon characters were not real, but I did not understand how they could interact with real people. My mind was blown! Every time I watched this movie, I thought that maybe, just maybe, I was wrong and that cartoons were actually real.

The Nightmare Before ChristmasĀ (1993)


This movie is the first movie I remember seeing, and it is my absolute childhood favourite.Ā It was a gift from my grandmother and I watched it so often, the tape actually broke. I cried so much, my mum repaired it instead of throwing it away, and it still works! IĀ learned all the lyrics to every song by heart and still remember most of them. I still watch it at least 2 times a year, at Halloween and at Christmas. I loved that monsters tried to celebrate Christmas and I actually wished Jack Skellington could replace Santa for a year; I really wanted that vampire teddy bear.

The NeverEnding StoryĀ (1984) andĀ TheĀ Neverending Story II: The Next ChapterĀ (1990)


I haven’t seen these movies in years, but I remember being both afraid and amazed by the story and characters. And also being devastated by the horse scene. If you know what I’m talking about, you understand. These movies actually made me believe that if I were to read a very old book, the story would come true (I was a bit disappointed when I picked up the oldest book I could find at the library and none of that happened). I also really wanted to have a dragon like Falkor the Luck Dragon, which is probably why I would only draw dragons for a while. I had never seen anything like these movies, they were so unique!

Alice in WonderlandĀ (1951)


I have to say, I’ve always been disappointed that she wakes up at the end of the movie. Of course, I was happy the Queen of Hearts did not catch her, but still. Wonderland is such a fantastically surreal place,Ā I’ve always wanted to visit there. My favourite character was the cat because he could disappear at will but also because I was a little bit afraid of him. I could watch this movie over and over again without ever getting tired of it. And even though I have not seen it in a while, I still remember the song All in theĀ Golden Afternoon, sung by the flowers, because it gets stuck in my head all the time.

Peter PanĀ (1953)


I never wanted to grow up (unfortunately, I still did) and every night, I wished Peter Pan would come to my window and we’d fly to Neverland together. I really, really wanted to fight the pirates, and I really, really wanted to be able to fly. And even though I did not really like Tinkerbell, I wanted to have a fairy friend too. Just like I was a bit disappointed when Alive woke up, I was always a bit disappointed when Wendy and her brothers decided to go back home. This is the first movie that made me believe in magic.

Ben-HurĀ (1959)


Yes,Ā Ben-Hur is one of my childhood favourites. Every Easter, I would watch it on t.v. and even though I did not understand the story at all, I absolutely loved the horse races. I also loved when Judah Ben-Hur goes to see his sister and mother in the Valley of the Lepers, because I thought it was scary (for some reason). I watched it this Easter for the first time in years and probably understood the story for the first time in my life.

Who Framed Roger RabbitĀ (1988)


I actually saw this movie for the first time after seeingĀ Space Jam. And I was really happy to see that cartoons and humans worked together “again”. This was another proof that cartoon characters might actually be real, just hiding from us.Ā I really should watch this movie again because I barely remember the story. But I remember Judge Doom, played by Christopher Lloyd, melting in the end and just how disgusting, but cool I thought it was.

Honey, I Shrunk the KidsĀ (1989)


The ants were amazing. The cereal scene scared the hell out of me, I mean, the dad could have eaten his kid! I actually thought the actors had been shrunk for real, otherwise, how could they have slept in legos and befriend ants? I was genuinely concerned for them. What if someone stepped on them? What if they never made it back to the house? What if the machine did not work and they were doomed to stay shrunk forever? So many questions…

Jack and the BeanstalkĀ (1974)


Every time our grandmother babysat us over at her place, my sister and I would watch this movie. It was nightmare inducing, but we kept watching either way.Ā I actually don’t know if it was intentional or not, but all the songs were scary, but we also loved them. The scariest scene was the wedding one with the people made out of paper. Chilling. But we still enjoyed it very much, we loved to be scared I guess. My grandmother would never watch it with us (I actually do not know if she’s ever seen it) and my sister and I were convinced it was because she was too afraid.