790. The Hungry Squid – John Weldon

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SUMMARY: A young girl named Dorothy gets in trouble at school when a series of different animals begin eating her homework and no-one will believe her.

WHY IT’S HERE: The great thing about animator John Weldon is you never know exactly what his unusual mind will come up with next. Using his own technique of ‘digital recyclomation’, incorporating low-budget CG, stop-motion puppets and photos, Weldon’s ‘The Hungry Squid’ is a masterpiece of quirky, cynical storytelling which puts a subversive spin on the art of the children’s story. The tale, in which young Dorothy finds she cannot transport her homework to school without it being eaten by animals, is peppered with hilarious details, such as her classmates’ implausible excuses which are readily accepted by the teacher or Dorothy’s encounters with the ineffectual school counsellor. The unusual animation style is both wilfully crude and mesmerizingly great, with Weldon’s quirky puppets perfectly complimenting his off-kilter storyline. More accessible and family-friendly than Weldon’s previous works ‘The Lump’ and ‘Frank the Wrabbit’, ‘The Hungry Squid’ is an overlooked masterpiece of short animation.

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