Yahmdallah links to Time Out's 100 Best Animated Movies, here. I've seen 58 of these (missing the bulk of anything Japanese that didn't come out of Studio Ghibli), so I'm hardly entitled to quibble. But:
1) I really dislike The Fantastic Mr. Fox, and think it's way too high on the list. This isn't a knee-jerk “Not Wes Anderson!” response, either — I've enjoyed watching actors sink their chops into what Anderson hands them (I'm thinking particularly of Gene Hackman in The Royal Tenenbaums). And I won't deny TFMF its technical virtuosity. But as I snarked to Y-man, if you contrast Fox with The Nightmare Before Christmas you see the difference between a director who's really pleased with himself, and a director who's taken such a deep pleasure in the work that he has disappeared from view.
2) Rango has its amusements, but is a bust on all sorts of levels. I would have left it off the list and added Flushed Away, which came first, and told the same story — successfully.
3) Nice to see Waking Life included. I'm also a big fan of Richard Linklater's A Scanner Darkly, and would have made sure it was on the list — probably a slot or two higher than Waking Life, actually.
Speaking of Richard Linklater: wow, does this movie poster ever look unpromising:
Still, the kids are fond of him. And it's not like I'm a Jack Black hater, per se. He just makes me . . . wary.*
So, remembering that I've yet to be disappointed by a Linklater movie, I went ahead and took it home from the library. I was hooked within the first 20 minutes. Better yet, the conceit of the movie never dawned on me until the end credits started to roll, at which point the whipsaw effect of realisation was so dramatic I had to go back and watch the damn thing from beginning to end again. What fun!
Enjoy your weekend.
*As does Will Ferrell, although Ferrell threatens to nudge me further. The LEGO Movie! would have been nearly perfect if Ferrell had remained nothing but a voice. I mean, I understand why they went “meta” by movie's end — much like a viewer can understand why Spielberg went with the mawkish opening and closing scenes for Saving Private Ryan — but dramatically that scene is the least engaging of the entire movie. Starkly so, when contrasted with the rest of the movie — again, much like Ryan. But rest assured: LEGO! is the better movie.