I saw PERSEPOLIS the other night. I was swept away by this film. It's astounding. I'm having second thoughts about RATATOUILLE -- I thought that film was great and incredibly entertaining and totally deserving of the Oscar, but... I'm beginning to think that PERSEPOLIS was probably even more deserving.
Lots of great press have been written about Marjane Satrapi's film. Boasting a 95% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it certainly has support from the critics. Sooooo, if that's the case, then...why aren't we talking more about this film? It's a 2D animated feature film with some great animation, great story -- a true personal historical tale told from a single individual artist's view; a graphic novelist who's been able to successfully visualize her story up on the big screen. That's what all of us strive for, right? This is what it's all about for us filmmakers, us artists, us animator/directors, right? To be able to tell our story the way that we want to tell it, without studio interference, right? (However, I'm sure that Marjane probably had her ups and downs in getting her story told here. That's bound to happen when you convert your graphic novel into a film. But the end result is still 100 times more personal than any studio animated feature, if you ask me.)
Why aren't we screaming at the top of our lungs, telling everyone we meet to go see this film? We need to support these types of films or else we're going to have to subject ourselves to typical studio output. Base, trivial, executive-driven, vapid, stale studio output.
For the uninitiated, PERSEPOLIS is Satrapi's account of living in Iran as a woman, from a young girl with idealized visions of becoming a prophet, to growing up midst the Iranian revolution and forced to be stifled by gender politics and fewer civil liberties. Humorous and poignant, abrasive and tender, PERSEPOLIS moves like no other animated film. I got wrapped up in its story, its characters, its tone and settings. The graphic, stylized 2D world that Satrapi creates (in black & white, mind you) become flesh, blood and bone right before your very eyes. I was transfixed. GO SEE THIS FILM.
For all you Portlanders and NW'ers: It's worth noting that Marjane Satrapi herself will be speaking here in Portland, next Monday, April 7th, at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 7:30 p.m, downtown. More info about this event can be found HERE. I'm seriously thinking about going to this. I'd love to hear her speak. Looking forward to it.
PERSEPOLIS official site.
PERSEPOLIS Wikipedia entry (The Iranian government's reaction to the film are mentioned here.)
NY Animator/Director Michael Sporn's take on the film.
You can help me out by buying Satrapi's Complete Persepolis here:
GO SEE THIS FILM. SUPPORT.