(First) Man's (First) Best Friend
February 10, 2013 1:40 PM   Subscribe

"Adam and Dog" is a beautiful animated short by Disney artist and animator Minkyu Lee (features some nonsexual nudity).

Financed entirely out-of-pocket for $25,000 and animated over two years by a team of only six, "Adam and Dog" won the 2012 Annie for best animated short and has been nominated for an Academy Award.

Minkyu Lee - “This is a short film that me and a group of my close friends made. It was put together by artists who work at various studios, including Disney Feature, Dreamworks and Pixar; The animation is done by myself, Jennifer Hager, James Baxter, Mario Furmanczyk, Austin Madison, and Matt Williames. Glen Keane also helped by being a consultant on the film, and also doing some visual development. It is a completely independent film without any major studio involvement. We are really excited for people to see it, and wanted to share.”
posted by brieche (15 comments total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
If you're hesitant about the subject matter or 15-minute runtime, I recommend watching the minute-long trailer first, which should give you a pretty good idea of what the full film is like (and does so better than any of my words could).
posted by brieche at 1:40 PM on February 10, 2013 [2 favorites]

That is lovely. Thank you.
posted by Cocodrillo at 2:11 PM on February 10, 2013

That was good. Adam's eyes, when the dog meets him again, surprised me.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 2:11 PM on February 10, 2013 [1 favorite]

Dogs are awesome.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:25 PM on February 10, 2013 [2 favorites]

Knowing the Biblical story just gave the first half of this so much pathos. "Don't lose the dog because of the Fall," I thought.

Silly me. Dogs don't let you lose them that easily.

What a wonderful cartoon.
posted by xingcat at 2:32 PM on February 10, 2013 [3 favorites]

Austin Madison, one of the animators, is the guy behind those hilarious football matchup drawings.

If there's a theater near you showing the Oscar animated shorts, definitely consider going. Man & Dog and the other nominated shorts are worth seeing on the big screen. They're all totally different and completely incredible.
posted by troika at 2:57 PM on February 10, 2013 [2 favorites]

Wow, I really did not like this. It's beautiful animation, sure, but I wish the beautiful animation had been used to tell a story that I could also enjoy.

Separately I also wish the theater near me were still showing the oscar shorts- I didn't have time to go last week and now I'd have to drive 3 hrs to get to a theater.
posted by nat at 3:24 PM on February 10, 2013

I knew this was going to make me cry. Dammit, where's my cat? I need a snuggle.

Oh, right, sitting, staring, waiting for me to feed her while I ignore her and stare at my computer.

Hey kitty, want some food? Let's go get you some food.
posted by maryr at 3:26 PM on February 10, 2013 [2 favorites]

So, the original sin is now failing to put (dog) Bros before Hos? While I like the idea of being a bad friend to your dog as a sin rather than just wanting knowledge, once again, it's all the woman's fault. (interesting that there is only one dog, so no chance the faithful friend will likewise get distracted by mating. No scenes of Adam calling frantically for his buddy while said buddy ignores him and chases a bitch in heat).

Yes, it is beautiful to look at, although I think the background outshines the character designs.

It did not make me cry, it made me tired. Oh, this story again. Now women are to blame for Adam's inability to be nice to his dog, as well as his inabilty to say "No thanks, I don't want some forbidden fruit."

It is rather enjoyable to contemplate an Eden where animals with very carnivorous bodies and teeth are eating fruit and grain. Makes Eden even more of a fairy tale, or else an obviously preplanned, Fall-ready setup.
posted by emjaybee at 6:44 PM on February 10, 2013 [1 favorite]

...I didn't read it that way *at all*. Woman wasn't doing all that much to distract Man. Man was doing that alllll on his own. Woman was perfectly happy to meet Dog at the end. Man was pretty friendly with all the animals, frankly - it was only Dog that was really friendly back.

(I cried because SPOILER! Dog could have stayed in Eden. He could have stayed!)
posted by maryr at 6:50 PM on February 10, 2013 [1 favorite]

Yes, but, after you have seen umpty-billion stories where Everything is Great, Then a Woman Came Along, well...you get a little twitchy, is all. Even if it's really Adam's fault, she was the reason he had the opportunity to screw up at all. Nothing bad happens until she appears, and so that assocation is unavoidable.

Which is actually the point of Genesis to a lot of woman-suppressing types, who say so explicitly and still blame us for existing, creating lustful thoughts, and "causing" men to screw up, in Eden and since.

Outwardly it's indeed a heartwarming tale of doggy loyalty with pretty images. Underneath is all the cultural baggage that comes from seeing everything from a male POV in a story created in one extremely patriarchal culture and then appropriated and re-used by other patriarchal cultures.

I didn't even get into them being extremely white, which is a whole 'nother eye-rolling issue. Because of course the Original Perfect Humans were white, never mind the story comes from a non-white part of the world.

I'm sure this seems like beanplating to a lot of people, but how we tell stories matters, especially stories that are so entangled in our history.
posted by emjaybee at 7:05 PM on February 10, 2013 [3 favorites]

I agree with most of emjaybee's points above. The film was really well-made and the dog was such a sweetie but all that beauty was at the service of a fundamentally evil story. I have a hard time finding any redeeming qualities in any telling of the "the fall" and all it implies. The background paintings were gorgeous though.
posted by wabbittwax at 8:46 PM on February 10, 2013 [1 favorite]

As a woman named after 'the woman who wrecked everything' (as almost everyone learning my name reminds me) who owns and loves and was saved by a dog that looks a lot like the one in the video, this was hard to see, but I made myself watch it because of the dog. That's what dogs do to you. and what we do to dogs is worse.
posted by The otter lady at 9:07 PM on February 10, 2013

Interesting to view this (elsewhere) with no inkling what it was about. At least for a few moments, you get something of a fresh look at an old story, and the monumental unfairness of it hits you with extra force by contrasting with the beauty of the landscape and the dog.

And although of course I know, it suddenly made me wonder how it is that the Mormons were forced to repudiate their "Curse of Cain" doctrine thirty-odd years ago, yet no one even suggests that we force this rather larger religion to repudiate its rather more central doctrine that every sin on earth is the fault of Woman.
posted by chortly at 10:01 PM on February 10, 2013

What emjaybee said right there. I don't think that's beanplating even a little. Storytelling is a critical component of our society. How we pass these ideas and ideals along to the ones that come up behind us in life is just as important as the idea(l)s themselves.
posted by empatterson at 10:37 PM on February 10, 2013

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