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Paths of Hate
February 20, 2013 6:36 PM   Subscribe

Paths of Hate is a highly stylized Polish CGI animated short movie which to an extent mimics traditional cel animation, but goes far beyond what's practically possible with traditional techniques. It also has some excellent, high-intensity aerial combat. Possibly NSFW for some light blood and gore.
posted by Joakim Ziegler (33 comments total) 30 users marked this as a favorite

 
Has its moments. I liked the realism of the plane controls done as "cell" like animation. Especially the color palette. The climatic music however kind of spoiled the mood for me. But. For CGI it definitely had a new look.
posted by njohnson23 at 7:07 PM on February 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Holy fuck, that was beautifully done. The music wasn't my favorite, but it doesn't distract from how masterful everything else was.

The shots of the bullets going into the chamber while all the other machinery was tearing itself apart around it was phenomenal.
posted by Jon_Evil at 7:07 PM on February 20, 2013


The Polish studio where this was made, Platige Shorts, has a website with other impressive animations, including a previous work by "Path's" Director Damien Nenow, the more lighthearted (you might say) "The Great Escape".
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:10 PM on February 20, 2013 [3 favorites]


Yeah, I wasn't crazy about the nu-metal music towards the end either, but that's about the only complaint I have. The look of the thing, the clouds that look like 3D watercolors, the cel animation hyper-detailed look of the mechanical stuff, the line work on the faces... It's pretty flawless.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 7:13 PM on February 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


Beautiful, perfect visuals. Needs new music.
posted by odinsdream at 7:21 PM on February 20, 2013


I had a hard time liking this. It was technically well done, but it was a bit over the top. I kept thinking about how there was no way in hell those planes ever handled like that, and the teenagers that climbed into them were most likely scared shitless.
posted by Brocktoon at 7:57 PM on February 20, 2013 [4 favorites]


100% cool, says I.
posted by ShutterBun at 8:17 PM on February 20, 2013


So this is what happens after the zombie apocalypse?
The zombies begin creating their own technologies, striving for nothing so mundane or humane as technology that fails when it breaks, no, planes that are veritably homunculus driven by a zombie spirit and ambition? A clockwork world that never stops ticking because it has a greater need to continue existing, even at the expense of the laws of nature?
A zombie theology, a greater hatred than even life could maintain, a zombie love, driven to ends that would beget the greatest neurosis...
posted by burntbook at 8:17 PM on February 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


This studio also made an animated short called "Fallen Art", which I think is trying to show how war can be a kind of beautiful sustenance for a certain type of very terrible person/institution. I highly recommend it.
posted by compartment at 8:30 PM on February 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


So soon I could play a game, maybe Zelda , that looked like that?
posted by Ad hominem at 9:01 PM on February 20, 2013


Ad hominem: "So soon I could play a game, maybe Zelda , that looked like that?"

It's not that far off from Borderlands. The technology is there (as this video clearly shows). The challenge is mainly deciding that you want pencil mark detail / shading.
posted by pwnguin at 11:02 PM on February 20, 2013


The technique is phenomenal. The theme would be powerful if I didn't get flashbacks to John Cleese's Black Knight.
posted by zompist at 11:04 PM on February 20, 2013


This is really cool! I didn't know what people were complaining about regarding the music, then the vocals started up. Yeesh. But wow. Absolutely gorgeous.
posted by brundlefly at 11:07 PM on February 20, 2013


Yeah the cell shading style isn't exactly new. Wind Waker is another good example of a game created in such a fashion.
posted by Brocktoon at 11:10 PM on February 20, 2013


Chase scenes usually don't hold my attention, but this was really well done.

We do have many ways of killing each other, don't we?
posted by littlesq at 1:07 AM on February 21, 2013


It looks like this was inspired by the anecdote about Russian ace Vladimir Lavrinenkov, who, allegedly, downed a German plane, landed next to it and proceeded to strangle the pilot (note that this claim was made in one book and that Lavrinenkov has denied it, joking that he was lucky that the authors did not claim that he had ripped out the pilot's throat).
posted by elgilito at 1:28 AM on February 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


So... let's call it a draw then.
posted by markkraft at 2:14 AM on February 21, 2013


Wonderful animations, and the sound design really sells it.

…and then the singing begins.
posted by monocultured at 2:42 AM on February 21, 2013


I think the whole zombie stuff was unnecessary. It could've ended when they both shot each other.
Great animation, otherwise. The clouds and the machinery were fantastic.
posted by lbebber at 5:02 AM on February 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


That aside, were machine guns really placed right behind the helix? (4:30)
posted by lbebber at 5:16 AM on February 21, 2013


That aside, were machine guns really placed right behind the helix?
Yes, since WW1. You can see the guns on this Me 109 for instance (one of the planes shown in the movie, the other is a Spitfire).
posted by elgilito at 5:28 AM on February 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Spitfire, on the other hand, had wing-mounted guns.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:43 AM on February 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


The clip sadly misses the essential tragedy of war, which is that young soldiers programmed to hate are just as much tools as machine guns, spitfires and religion are in the hands of the mad children sitting on the golden thrones in the halls of power.

Or perhaps it portrays it exceptionally well. I'm not quite sure. Is it blissfully unaware of its irony or is it so subtly evinced that I cannot perceive its touch.

The shaders reminded me of Dragon Quest 8 and Okami, though, so that was nice.
posted by seanmpuckett at 5:59 AM on February 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yes, since WW1. You can see the guns on this Me 109 for instance (one of the planes shown in the movie, the other is a Spitfire).
Thanks, that's very interesting!
posted by lbebber at 6:10 AM on February 21, 2013


I kept thinking about how there was no way in hell those planes ever handled like that, and the teenagers that climbed into them were most likely scared shitless.

If these guys did make an animated documentary, I'm sure all those elements would be there.
posted by juiceCake at 6:24 AM on February 21, 2013


the teenagers that climbed into them were most likely scared shitless
(Un)fortunately for them, they were also high on amphetamines.
posted by elgilito at 7:14 AM on February 21, 2013


That was great.

As someone with hundreds of hours in MMOL air combat sims, I can offer some comment on the planes as depicted here (I have seen some pixels in my day, you might say). My primary interest and experience is in WWI sims but many of the planes used in WWII are really wonderful planes to, er, 'fly' and so I keep my hand in on WWII planes as well.

First of all, the interior cockpits as depicted here appear to be pretty carefully researched. An interesting sidenote for gamers is that while rearview mirrors were common field mods added by individual pilots or mechanics (and some planes may even have come with them, I do not recall), most sims do not implement them because of processor power issues - presenting a segment of the rearview space requires the visual info for that space to be calculated concurrently with the frontview.

Secondly, the early-war planes seen here, the ME109 and the Spitfire (I think; there is an outside possibility it's a Hurricane), really did handle pretty much as shown. A difference from the film in both historical and simmed engagments in these, or any WWII planes, is that in general, the distances between the planes are greater than shown here, due to the speed of the aircraft. My assumption is that closer distances are dictated by the requirement of the film to keep both planes in-frame for the majority of the shots.

Third, the visual expression of the damage to the fuselages in the film seems somewhat exaggerated with little performance penalty. Again, not a problem in the context of the piece. But at least insofar as simming is concerned, when you see pieces fly off your plane or your opponent's plane, for all intents and purposes the engagement is over, because the plane that has had partial structural failure will not fly as effectively and sometimes will not fly any more at all.

Fiddly bits: the landing gear bit was cute but improbable. The HTH collision was really cool but impossible as depicted; nonetheless I really liked the visualization conflating the zombies with jousting knights. The appropriation of the imagery and perceived ideology of medieval knights for use in the context of the pop culture and wartime propaganda of combat pilots is well known and dates to WW1 on both sides of the conflict. The depiction of vaportrails from wingtips and volleys was excellent and both visually and technically interesting, in that you can observe the pursuing pilot's use of deflection in his anticipation of his target's location.
posted by mwhybark at 8:20 AM on February 21, 2013 [5 favorites]


Fantastic. I'd like to see the entire Hellboy canon animated like this. And with different music.
posted by sneebler at 9:59 AM on February 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Fantastic. I'd like to see the entire Hellboy canon animated like this. And with different music.

Oh man, that's a great idea. Including the different music.

I keep hoping animation like this will get easier to do, at least easier in the sense of less labor intensive. It'd be a great way for people to get into filmmaking and to tell stories without having to do the whole "go out and shoot" thing, which is difficult and big and requires a lot of people. It'd be sort of like what home studios have done for (primarily electronic) music.

But we're not there yet, I think. From what I can tell, doing this level of animation is at least as much effort and expense as going out and shooting a short film. (Although not as much as going out and shooting a short film with airplanes fighting and crashing, I bet.)
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 2:01 PM on February 21, 2013


You know, I think I just remembered an animated air combat sequence from the 1981 film "Heavy Metal" that in some way relates to this. Aircrew zombies, iirc.

Yep. "B-17," adapted from a story by Dan O'Bannon!

Here's a truncated version of the scene with a different soundtrack than the one originally released.
posted by mwhybark at 5:03 PM on February 21, 2013


FWIW, I don't think the intention is that the pilots turn into zombies in this short. It's more like they give into their dark side and become demons or some such. The hate transforms them.

I think.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 7:10 PM on February 21, 2013


Also, while I love the Heavy Metal movie, and that part of it in particular, the quality of animation is laughable compared to this.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 7:11 PM on February 21, 2013


I was also reminded of Heavy Metal, as well as Running Man, not so much the story as some of the style choices.
posted by hgswell at 1:13 AM on February 22, 2013


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