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Le Roi et L’oiseau
December 15, 2005 2:57 PM   Subscribe

Le Roi et L’oiseau - is an old school “anime” by Paul Grimault, the script and score were contributed to by Jacques Prévert. If those two names are not good enough for you then I also submit for your approval that the style in this film has been referenced as a source of inspiration for Hayao Miyazaki. Although the wikipedia article doesn't back it up, so ill link to another site that does. At any rate watching this movie will leave you wondering just how many people have ripped it off over the years.
posted by sourbrew (29 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
Also, a little history, the movie was originally released by André Sarrut in 1950 as La Bergére et le Ramoneur (The Chimneysweeps and the Shepherdess). This was against Grimault’s wishes and he lost control of the film until 1967 when he finally regained control and managed to finish the movie according to his own vision. Unfortunately, the only english version, Mr. Wonderbird, is from André Sarrut’s original version and lacks all of the final touches of the Grimauld version. The french version also received a much needed digital restoration in 2001.

amazon link for american version

posted by sourbrew at 3:05 PM on December 15, 2005


Wow. Sounds intriguing. Thanks!
posted by brundlefly at 3:25 PM on December 15, 2005


The website says there are no English subtitles. Would some 15 year old high school french get me by?
posted by Roger Dodger at 3:31 PM on December 15, 2005


Way to solve some of my Christmas gift giving woes. And only $2!!

(Great post also.)
posted by fire&wings at 3:31 PM on December 15, 2005


Roger Dodger - The american version has english audio, however the plot is substantially different from the french, and yes a little high school french should get you through it, Most of the story is told in images.
posted by sourbrew at 3:37 PM on December 15, 2005


I hate to play definition police, but anime does not mean animation. Anime is a style of animation that originated in Japan, of which this is not an example.
posted by nthdegx at 3:54 PM on December 15, 2005


I hate to play definition police, but anime does not mean animation. Anime is a style of animation that originated in Japan, of which this is not an example.

Hence the use of quote marks around "anime" in the original post? Unless you're saying Miyazaki/Ghibli output is also not anime...
posted by juv3nal at 3:57 PM on December 15, 2005


nthdegx - That is why the anime is in quotes. Also if you read the supporting links I refereed to it that way because this movie was an influence in the style of Miyazaki, Studio Ghibli, as well as some other japanese animation. Anime did not grow up in a vacuum, it was a response to contemporary (Manga)and foreign inputs.
posted by sourbrew at 3:59 PM on December 15, 2005


Thanks - this is very interesting to me.
I'm currently planning a college course on the history of animation, and have never heard about this film. (Though I am showing a couple Miyazaki pictures.) The film doesn't even show up in most of the academic literature on animation.

Shame about the lack of English subtitles, though: I'm afraid it wouldn't go over too well in an American university without 'em, and, anyway, as you say, sourbrew, it sounds like the story has been screwed with for the "benefit" of us 'Murkins.
posted by Dr. Wu at 4:04 PM on December 15, 2005


"Anime" is a french word. It's used in English and Japanese as a loan-word to refer to a set of Japanese cartoon styles though I do not know why. In the Francophonie, it refers to any animation. Please don't pretend to be the language police when all you've got is a tin badge.
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 4:11 PM on December 15, 2005


Please don't pretend to be the language police when all you've got is a tin badge.

Ouch.
posted by soiled cowboy at 4:14 PM on December 15, 2005


This is cool. I'm a huge Miyazaki fan and can definitely see how he was influenced. Thanks. Great post indeed.
posted by dazed_one at 4:42 PM on December 15, 2005


I call languagehat sock puppet.
posted by fire&wings at 4:49 PM on December 15, 2005


http://www.metafilter.com/mefi/22097#398550
http://www.metafilter.com/mefi/22377#405277

Languagehat and I are two distinct people, as the above links show.
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 4:57 PM on December 15, 2005


it looks beautiful--thanks!
posted by amberglow at 5:34 PM on December 15, 2005


Just shows how good 'hat is at the game.
posted by kenko at 5:37 PM on December 15, 2005


j/k (?)
posted by fire&wings at 5:52 PM on December 15, 2005


So why not just edit Wikipedia so it does back it up?
posted by jscott at 6:20 PM on December 15, 2005


Ah, no worries then. And apologies to nthdegx if I came across a bit snarky.
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 6:25 PM on December 15, 2005


fert
posted by quonsar at 6:27 PM on December 15, 2005


I saw this as a kid & remember being freaked out. Would love to see it again, thanks for the reminder.
posted by muckster at 6:52 PM on December 15, 2005


This recently showed up on a torrent tracker I frequent, but I didn't get around to checking it out. Thanks for the additional info, I'll definitely see how it is.
posted by jimmy at 7:06 PM on December 15, 2005


jimmy..... i alluded to such in my blog.....
posted by sourbrew at 7:16 PM on December 15, 2005


"Anime" is a french word. It's used in English and Japanese as a loan-word to refer to a set of Japanese cartoon styles though I do not know why.


Japanese also uses the word anime to refer to all animation. Borrowed into English it means animation originating in Japan.
posted by emmling at 8:25 PM on December 15, 2005


I also saw it when I was growing up in France. I recently watched Miyazaki's Castle in the Sky, and the fantastic architecture distinctly reminded me of Le Roi et L'oiseau. There wasn't that much dialogue. You should be able to follow the story even if you don't understand the language by watching the images.
posted by Loudmax at 9:38 PM on December 15, 2005


Roger Dodger: I watched the movie while having the script by my side (no french subtitles on the DVD either) and just paused and translated when necessary. It's not that distracting, actually - and of course you can watch it a second time without the script.

(testing this comment in firefox)
posted by helios at 12:39 PM on December 16, 2005


Sourbrew: thanks for the link in your blog.
posted by soiled cowboy at 12:45 PM on December 16, 2005


Here's a really late addition to this thread: I got the American DVD. It's well-worth seeing. But the animation, in the strictest sense of the world, is not that great. It is, in fact, sub-Fleischer, and no where near classic Disney. (Although some characters, the King, for instance, are more completely animated than others.) The animation is about at Terrytoons level. And the story is also terribly weak. BUT, that said, this is a really different, really interesting film. There is absolutely no question that this is the Ur-Miyazaki film. The ornate castle, the long stairways, the precarious rooftop chase, the underground caverns, the giant robot, the antiquated flying machine -- I could go on and on. Clearly, Miyazaki absorbed this film into his pores. If you have any interest in Maestro Miyazaki, this is a necessary document.
posted by Faze at 6:33 PM on December 23, 2005


"Japanese also uses the word anime to refer to all animation. Borrowed into English it means animation originating in Japan."

Precisely. And putting a word in quotation marks doesn't excuse misusing a word. It calls into question other people's usage in a given context. Origins of words don't encapsulate present defintions. Shove your badge up your arse.
posted by nthdegx at 5:04 PM on January 6, 2006


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