January 4, 2020 5:26 AM   Subscribe

The Fabulous World of Karel Zeman (Keith Allison, Diabolique Magazine): "If you took special effects film pioneer Georges Méliès and combined him with stop motion animation genius Ray Harryhausen and surreal fantasist Terry Gilliam, you’d have a filmmaker very close to Karel Zeman. Harryhausen was a contemporary, and so the two men played off of one another’s work. Gilliam names Zeman as one of the biggest influences on the former Monty Pythoner’s exquisitely-designed fantasy films." (Zeman previously)

video of the films discussed, what i could find (don't expect English in most)
Journey to the Beginning of Time (1955)
Invention of Destruction / The Fabulous World of Jules Verne (1958)
Intro of The Fabulous World of Baron Munchausen (1962)
The Stolen Airship (1967) (in Russian)
On the Comet (1970)
posted by sapagan (4 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
I just watched the Baron Munchausen film and it was incredibly imaginative. The images were fantastic, blends of animation and real sets; the movement in this world seemed so effortless - there's no constraints, whether you wish to ride a horse at the bottom of the sea or hop on a cannonball. And of course, the music of Zdenek Liška was wonderful.
posted by sapagan at 6:36 AM on January 4

There's sooooo much good Czech and Polish animation along these lines!

For those looking to dig further, Svankmajer may be the most popular contemporary heir, but Jiří Trnka did some wonderful stuff that's hard to categorize, and Jiří Barta worked a lot with wood, which just really appeals to me. In Poland, Władysław Starewicz was as much of a stop-motion pioneer as Harryhausen in a way, and Jan Lenica did things that in hindsight read as very Gilliam-esque.
posted by aspersioncast at 8:07 AM on January 4 [1 favorite]

Also it will come as little surprise to those of a certain age that I first started researching stop-motion animation after a stoned realization that a Tool video clearly used the same basic techniques as Gumby.
posted by aspersioncast at 8:11 AM on January 4

His stuff is amazing, love it.
posted by Liquidwolf at 10:13 AM on January 4

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