L'ILLUSIONISTE / The Illusionist

March 30th, 7pm - FREE

Director: Sylvain Chomet
2010 / 80 min

Batdorf & Bronson Coffee Roasters
1530 Carroll Dr NW # 100, Atlanta, GA 30318

We're pleased to present this FREE screening along with MINT as part of The Tournées Festival of French Film at Georgia State University. Read all about it!

From the newest member of the ASIFA-Atlanta board -

The Illusionist: an introduction
Aurorah Yarberry, Secretary, ASIFA-Atlanta

When I was at University studying animation in England I heard whispers whilst working on my ball bounce exercises. “Scotland.” “Triplet’s of Belleville” and in the most breathless of whispers “ Sylvain Chomet” saying the name felt like melted chocolate, “Sylvain… Chomet” and I worried if I said his name too loudly the whole thing might disappear. It was the fall of 2008, and graduating animation students from the previous year had been scooped up, and bundled away to Edinburgh where they were working away furiously on his new film, and all of us budding young animators were enchanted with the idea that somewhere close by they were making a traditional feature length animated film by hand.

Sylvain Chomet certainly has a reputation, and to a young animator he might as well be Walt Disney reincarnate. He’s one of the living legends of modern animation who’s name rings similarly sacred to Richard Williams who’s Roger Rabbit enchanted me as a child, and forever convinced me that cartoons and people can live together. In Chomet’s Illusionist, real human emotions are embodied within the animated characters, and this is perhaps the next step in the evolution of the relationship between people and cartoons living together.

I didn’t know it at the time but what I was hearing whispers in my first year of University has come to exist as the film that you are about to see here tonight. The Illusionist started life out as a script by the French comedian Jacques Tati, known simply as “Film Tati No. 4” was written as a love letter to his estranged daughter. These are the two main characters portrayed within the film, and helps to explain their relationship. The Illusionist stays away from archetypes, and instead embraces the complexities of human emotion that often exist between parental figures and their offspring.

I hope as you all watch the film you will take the time to appreciate the craftsmanship that went into making it possible. It’s a modern traditionally animated feature film, and that makes it a rare breed in this digital age. I hope you all enjoy it.