Between online streaming, Internet TV series, and video-on-demand, more animation is available online than ever before. But it’s not easy to find out what’s available, which is why today we’re launching the Internet Animation Guide.
Our guide is a handpicked selection of the best new animation available online. In this installment, we highlight films that transport you to the hallowed halls of a certain legendary Japanese animation studio and force you to contemplate the very meaning of existence.
World of Tomorrow
Don Hertzfeldt’s sci-fi short was a highlight at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, dazzling critics and winning the Sundance Short Film Grand Jury Prize. World of Tomorrow tackles cosmic themes in Hertzfeldt’s iconic style, centering on a young girl and a visitor from the distant future who explains what lies ahead for human civilization. Indie filmmaker Julia Pott and Hertzfeldt’s four-year-old niece, Winona, provide the voices.
The Obvious Child
Selected at Sundance and awarded Best Animation at the Go Short and Karkow Film Festivals, Stephen Irwin’s The Obvious Child features feverish visuals, challenging themes, and a gruesome sense of humor, starring an adorable rabbit and many dismembered body parts.
Classic Experimental Animation
A collection of experimental films by 20th century animation legends such as Oskar Fischinger, Jules Engel, and Jordan Belson has just been made available by the non-profit archive, the Center for Visual Music.
The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness
Filmed in 2012 and 2013, The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness is a penetrating and intimate portrait of Japan’s Studio Ghibli. Granted near-unfettered access to the notoriously insular Studio Ghibli, director Mami Sunada follows the three men who are the lifeblood of Ghibli—directors Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, and producer Toshio Suzuki—as the studio rushes to complete two films, Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises and Takahata’s The Tale of The Princess Kaguya.
Is the Man Who is Tall Happy?
More helpfully and accurately subtitled “an animated conversation with Noam Chomsky,” Is the Man Who is Tall Happy? consists of interviews between the director Michel Gondry and the famed intellectual, with Chomsky’s personal reminiscences and philosophical and scientific reflections illustrated with Gondry’s whimsical animation.
Koji Yamamura shorts
Japanese filmmaker Koji Yamamura has shared hi-res versions of his work through his personal YouTube account, including shorts like The Old Crocodile and the Oscar-nominated Mt. Head, as well as earlier pieces like Bavel’s Book. While not a complete catalog of his films, it represents a broad cross-section of his career, from early stop motion pieces like Serenade (1985) to Begon Dull Care (2014), a tribute he made with his wife Sanae to Norman McLaren’s classic experimental film.
This stylish 2007 Spanish/French hand-drawn feature explores the mystery of the night in a sweeping nocturnal adventure full of Alice in Wonderland-like characters and moody, dream-inspired landscapes. Have you ever wondered why your hair looks funny in the morning or where the sounds outside your window come from at night? A young boy named Tim finds out after an unusual discovery on the rooftop of his orphanage plunges him into the secret world of Nocturna, inhabited by curious creatures who control the night. Directed by Adrià Garcia and Victor Maldona.