Rant and Rave: ‘Paperman’

If you have seen Wreck it Ralph in theaters, then perhaps you may have already watched Disney’s latest Academy Award nominated short film, Paperman. Disney brings us another heartwarming short film, now viewable from Youtube, receiving over four million views in a matter of three days.

Set in 1940’s New York, this seven minute romance story features two ordinary white collar workers who serendipitously meet at the city train platform, just as a piece of paper flies and lands on Meg’s face. As George misses the chance to talk her and all his attempts to catch her attention fail him, Fate plays Cupid with the help of the most unlikely things and remedies the situation.

Aside from the story being told in black, white, and gray (and a hint of red), the animation production makes the short even more fascinating. As compared to the movies made with detailed and realistic 3D computer generated imagery (CGI) like Tangled or Brave, Paperman revisits the 2D days of Disney animation, eliciting admiration for the attention to detail. Director John Kahrs, influenced by the works of colleague Glen Keane (animator of Aladdin, Little Mermaid, and Tangled), created the short using Meander, a program which allows one to draw by hand over a CGI layer. The amalgamation of Disney’s classic 2D animation and Pixar’s CGI has captivated its viewers and critics in rave reviews.

Paperman has garnered mostly positive feedback from critics. Tim Robey, a Telegraph UK movie critic calls it “the best thing Disney has done in years,” and The Huffington Post hails the short film “a funny, charming thing of beauty.” In addition, The Film Stage has already evaluated Paperman, giving it a flattering A-.

The short film has an unquestionably exceptional animation, and its art style is quite nostalgic of Disney’s glory days. Even though it is in black and white, they brought color to the sweet typical love story. The fact that Paperman’s characters are not cutesy and are more mature sets it apart from its predecessors in terms of the market it wants to relate to. The characters portray a softer, more whimsical side of love, offering the viewers a simple boy-meets-girl plot that is not quite cliché.

The whole vibe of the short film is sure to give you a warm feeling as you follow the couple’s fate, wooing the audience with its true to life romance while putting the wind and physics into question, standing as an honest tribute to the simplest of love stories. Paperman is certainly Kahrs’ masterpiece, and soon enough perhaps one worthy of an Academy Award.

You can watch Paperman at this link:

Kimberly Ly

By Kimberly Ly

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