Review of The Painting

The Painting (2011)
Another fine recent animation effort from France.
7 November 2013
Warning: Spoilers
The Painting is about a painting in a painter's home. The painting is incomplete in several ways. The painting has a château, a flowering garden, and a dangerous forest, plus a multitude of characters.

The characters are divided into (Toupins, Pafinis, Reufs) or (Alldunns, Halfies, Sketchies) in English. In the conceit of the film, the Toupins (completed, fully painted characters) decide they should rule the proceedings, treating the Pafinis (part finished) badly, and enslaving the Reufs (rough sketches).

The protagonist is Lola a Halfie. Her Halfie friend Claire has fallen in love with a completed character, Ramo. Ramo tries to speak against the bad behaviour of the Alldunns in the château, but is shouted down. Claire is imprisoned. Lola, Ramo, and a Sketchie named Quill escape the painted through a perimeter weakness in the forest.

Once outside, the painting style shifts to a mixed one. Our heroes keep their form and colours, but the outside is rendered in strongly realistic terms. This is executed quite well.

The trio interact with characters in the painter's other paintings. Eventually they find that they can paint themselves. They speak with the painter's self-portrait, and gather up paint and brushes to take back the the painting of origin.

Their return increases the chaos for a while, but levels out the inequalities.

The ending where Lola again departs the painting and speaks with the painter is just delightful. There is another shift of mixing styles which is also well done.


Art/Animation: 10/10 Breath-taking.

Sound: 10/10 No problems.

Screenplay: 10/10 Loved the imaginative story with interesting infrastructure, and beautiful ending.
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