Idiots and Angels

[Screenshot]This is a rather odd creature: a silent, honestly fairly technically crude little allegory about good and evil, and how gifts are used. Because the art’s not deeply expressive and the characters don’t speak, emotion and attitudes have to be pretty simple and simply presented, so at any given point, each character is basically an archetype, and these archetypical modules get plugged together to form a story, which actually mostly works. It’s simplistic, but somehow rather affecting in its simplicity. It feels perhaps a bit long for what it is (in spite of not being all that long by feature-film standards) simply due to a certain monotony of style and slightness of story, but in spite of its crudity, there’s a sense of effectiveness about it in delivering its little fable. The lack of details creates a certain ambiguity in characterization and motivation at times, which perhaps serves to create a certain amount of suspense early on: what’s wrong with these people, we might wonder, to make them act as they do? All in all, this was an absorbing and quite imaginative take on animation-craft, and worthwhile. Bill Plympton is apparently best known for his shorts, and it kind of shows here, in that it starts to drag slightly, but his art is fundamentally sound.

A side note: Netflix really wants movies to have a cast, and was kind of flummoxed by the lack of either voice actors or body actors, which may be why they decided that this movie starred Tom Waits and Pink Martini.

See also: IMDB.


About Jake
I'm a mathematics professor at the University of Louisville, and a geek.

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