TRAILER: “Alois Nebel”

Trailer for Alois Nebel, a new Czech animated feature directed by TomáÅ¡ Luňák. It debuts this month at the Venice Film Festival and Toronto International Film Festival, and opens soon afterward in the Czech Republic. The story looks engaging which is good because the graphic style that stems from the Waking Life school of floaty rotoscope doesn’t excite me at all. They combined the roto with a black-and-white palette, which has been a trendy look in recent indie animated features like Renaissance, Persepolis, Fear(s) of the Dark, and the semi-b&w Mary and Max. No word on international release dates, but stay tuned to the official website AloisNebel.cz.

Film synopsis if you want to know more:

The end of the eighties in the twentieth century. Alois Nebel works as a dispatcher at the small railway station on the Czech-Polish border. He’s a loner, who prefers old timetables to people, and he finds the loneliness of the station tranquil – except when the fog rolls in. Then he hallucinates, sees trains from the last hundred years pass through the station. They bring ghosts and shadows from the dark past of Central Europe.

The feature film Alois Nebel is an adaptation of the graphic novel by Jaroslav Rudiš and Jaromír 99 combining animation and live-action. The authors have chosen rotoscoping as the visual approach for the film in order to remain true to the style of the original comic book.

(Thanks to Tom for pointing out the story on Twitch)


  • MarkT

    Floaty? This rotoscope is the most solid (not floaty)I have ever seen.

  • http://www.frankpanucci.com Frank Panucci

    It’s a far more disciplined and watchable look than that of WAKING LIFE. Drawings are held when appropriate, which eliminates much of the decried “swimming” effect. There appears to be a fair share of After Effects-style puppetry, put to good use. It’s a mature application of technology, similar in appearance to WALTZ WITH BASHIR. It looks like a bigger-budget FRISKY DINGO/ARCHER. I mean that as a compliment.

  • Arg

    I love the floatiness of rotoscoping, and any animation. It feels organic and alive. “Waking Life” is a real testament to making a purely digital animated film come to life and feel human. You could feel the artist behind each scene. Unfortunately the tightness and dead calm quality of a lot of animation theses days, especially that done digitally feels sadly robotic and non-man made. The goal of animation is not to reproduce reality, we have cameras for that, it is to go beyond what a camera can do.

  • http://ulimeyeranimation.blogspot.com Uli Meyer

    I can’t believe I’m saying this but I actually like the look of this.

  • Rufus

    Looks great! Some of the best rotoscoping I’ve ever seen. I’m not partial to the floaty Waking Life style, but this doesn’t look floaty. Looking forward to this.

  • Justin

    What an awesome style.

  • http://dana-draws.blogspot.com Dana T

    I agree I really love the style this has been made in. Hope the story is just as interesting.

  • DB

    While the rotoscoping does not send uncanny valley shivers down my spine that make me want to scream like “Waking Life” et al, the characters looks depressingly primitive (in a bad way) and amateurish.

    Judging by the clip, the backgrounds and effects are superb though. Maybe they should have green-screened the actors and superimposed the live actors over the backgrounds.

  • Peter H

    If only Spielberg had taken this kind of route with Tintin!

  • Jane

    Watching that made me feel a little motion sick.