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August 19, 2007 1:07 AM   Subscribe

Storytime is a 1968 animated short film which marks the directorial debut of Terry Gilliam. It is not to be confused with Storytime, a famous sketch from Monty Python's Flying Circus (aka Monty Python's Fliegender Zirkus) — the British TV show for which Gilliam created surreal animations that segued between sketches (or not). In 1974, he followed that up with another animated short film called The Miracle of Flight. The next year, he set off in a different direction, leading Monty Python's quest for The Holy Grail [LEGO]. That path eventually led to Brazil, which brings us to where we are today.
posted by Poolio (17 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
Great post, Poolio.
posted by pruner at 1:22 AM on August 19, 2007


Of course, Python wasn't actually Gilliam's first work for British TV. Before Python, he worked on a children's TV series called Do Not Adjust Your Set.
that also featured several other Pythons-to-be, and the wonderful Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band as the house band.

I wonder if this was work he created for that slot?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 2:04 AM on August 19, 2007


I put together a playlist full of clips from DNAYS, but it didn't end up fitting into the post. None of the clips contained any of the animations Gilliam did.
posted by Poolio at 2:10 AM on August 19, 2007


Wow, I haven't seen those since they were first screened. Thanks.

Remember also At Last, the 1948 Show.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 2:39 AM on August 19, 2007


BTW... I think the 3rd part of Storytime ("Christmas Card") was created for DNAYS.
posted by Poolio at 2:42 AM on August 19, 2007


Thanks for that link, Peter. I didn't know about At Last the 1948 Show (which was apparently where Marty Feldman made his first screen appearance).

Oh, and great post, of course! Storytime is amazing—I guess Gilliam could basically have done Monty Python all by himself if live actors hadn't been needed.
posted by languagehat at 6:27 AM on August 19, 2007


Great link collection, Poolio. Of course, you'd have to dedicate about ten more paragraphs (each just as densely packed with links) to begin to explore the depths and breadth of Gilliam's twisted and delightful imagination. Napoleon's theater, the future's Philadelphia, the Heart of The American Dream, a sea of wheat—getting into Gilliam is a crazy enterprise. Of course, he tries to make it easier to understand him what with all of the film commentaries and Lost in La Mancha (there's a doc for Tideland too), but all that only ever adds another layer to his intrigue.
posted by carsonb at 6:54 AM on August 19, 2007


Awesome post. Big Python and Brazil fan right here. And of course, an exhaustive recounting of his memorable live action appearances in Flying Circus:

Viking: This is my only line. (crowd boos) Well it's my only line!
posted by silby at 7:41 AM on August 19, 2007


Maybe I'm a philistine, but I've always thought that Gilliam's animations were by far the worst part of Python. Individually, I suppose they're OK, but they're all the same thing, over and over. You see one giant head of some random Nineteenth Century English guy emerge from behind the clouds, you've seen them all.

On the other hand, I think that Gilliam is by far the best thing to have come out of Python. Brazil? Twelve Monkeys? The Adventures of Baron Munchausen? Awesome.
posted by Flunkie at 7:50 AM on August 19, 2007


I want to kiss this thread on the lips.
thanks!
posted by Busithoth at 9:22 AM on August 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


And of course, an exhaustive recounting of his memorable live action appearances in Flying Circus:

He was one of the Cardinals (Fang?) in the Spanish Inquisition sketch, and he turns up in a lot of other places, mostly either non-speaking parts or one-liners in one strange voice or another which hides his accent.
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:57 AM on August 19, 2007


Flunkie: "Maybe I'm a philistine, but I've always thought that Gilliam's animations were by far the worst part of Python..."

Yes you're a philistine, whatever that is, provided whatever that is is a bad thing to be for speaking such blasphemy.

Much more recently than Brazil or Python, Gilliam wrote and directed Tideland which at first made me wince as I was watching it, but it's the kind of show that lingers on for days afterwards. It sorta makes you think, but not in that annoying preachy way that other movies that make you think make you think. The film reminds you that no matter how old you get, you can still see the world around you with the eyes of a child, and it's easier to do that than one might think. Tideland helps one remember how to do that.

In hindsight I think I really enjoyed that movie. I just couldn't tell it at the time cuz a lot of things about it are very cringeworthy. It might contain Jeff Bridges' best performance.
posted by ZachsMind at 11:37 AM on August 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


Yes you're a philistine, whatever that is, provided whatever that is is a bad thing to be for speaking such blasphemy.
What do you think the worst part of Python was?
posted by Flunkie at 1:14 PM on August 19, 2007


OH MAN. You win at LIFE. THANK YOU for posting this. SO GOOD.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 3:02 PM on August 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


You can watch the trailer for Tideland (which ZachsMind mentioned) here. I found the link through Jeff Bridges' awesome site.
posted by Poolio at 5:33 PM on August 19, 2007


Of course, you'd have to dedicate about ten more paragraphs (each just as densely packed with links) to begin to explore the depths and breadth of Gilliam's twisted and delightful imagination.

Yeah... after I came cross Storytime and started putting the FPP together, I had a hard time limiting the scope and framing it. I was very surprised there hadn't been any prior FPPs specifically about Gilliam.
posted by Poolio at 10:07 PM on August 19, 2007


Yes, well, that's the sort of blinkered, philistine pig ignorance I've come to expect from you non-creative garbage.

Couldn't find video, so sad. One of my favorite sketches. And I think it's safe to assume, ZachsMind, that "philistine" is intended to have a negative connotation here. :P
posted by ZakDaddy at 7:59 PM on August 21, 2007


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