It’s Good to be British

The glorious island of Great Britain is the mother of my all-time favorite things.

For instance, the rock band Queen.  And C.S. Lewis.

This empire on which the sun never sets has also produced some fine animators.  I’m not going to make an exhaustive list, but here are some of my favorites:

George Dunning.  He directed Yellow Submarine (1968), a trippy album-turned-film featuring the music and members of the Beatles.  This movie sums up the entire psychedelic art movement of the 60s, all in a dazzling and disjointed 89 minutes.  It could be a slow experience for a non-Beatles fan (which I am not), but it certainly has its moments!

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George Dunning, Yellow Submarine, 1968

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George Dunning, Yellow Submarine, 1968

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George Dunning, Yellow Submarine, 1968

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George Dunning, Yellow Submarine, 1968

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George Dunning, Yellow Submarine, 1968

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George Dunning, Yellow Submarine, 1968

And… (insert drum roll) there are Yellow Submarine action figures!  NO WAY, you say? YES WAY, I say!

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Richard Williams: the man responsible for Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988).  He also directed The Thief and the Cobbler (1993), which is a better movie, for my money.  Although the project was stolen from him to meet deadlines and satisfy corporate concerns, it’s still pretty good.  Worth a watch, if only for the zany, lavish art style.

It’s also worth noting that the main villain, Zig Zag, is voiced by Vincent Price.  How cool is that?

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

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Richard Williams, The Thief and the Cobbler, 1993

Gerald Scarfe: although this fellow mostly does cartoons (by which I mean static cartoons, ones that don’t move), he did supervise the animated segments in Pink Floyd’s The Wall (1982).  I would argue that his sequences for The Wall are the most terrifying, evil animations ever made, hands down.  Golly, I love The Wall.

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Gerald Scarfe, The Wall, 1982

And I haven’t even mentioned Terry Gilliam.  Until now, that is.

You crazy British animators!  Keep it up.

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