Well guys I did it! With this review of The Blue Umbrella I will have seen and reviewed all the original Pixar shorts (that is until Sanjay’s Super Team comes out in November). I hope you have enjoyed these reviews as shorts are too often ignored or forgotten by the average filmgoers. I will post a ranking later this week of all the Pixar shorts but start thinking about what your favorites are and share in the comments below.
Anyway, back to the Blue Umbrella. This is one of the Pixar shorts I would put in the ‘technology advancing’ category. Like Luxo Jr or some of the early shorts the story is pretty simple but it is the animation which makes it stand out. I think it is pretty safe to say it is the most realistic looking animation I’ve ever seen.This photorealism was a result of a new rendering system called Global Illumination and I think it could be very exciting for the future of CG animation. I particularly wonder if they’ve used the technology in the new Jungle Book movie which I’ve heard from more than one source the trailer had the most realistic CG animals they’ve ever seen.
The music by Jon Brion with Sarah Jaffe vocals adds a lot to the story because like most Pixar shorts there is no dialogue.
In many ways it is a lot like the hat short in Make Mine Music. In my review of that I said “The whole thing is strange. I can feel for ducks, mice, parrots but hats…”. The same thing goes for umbrellas. I guess I just don’t have that great of an imagination to get into umbrellas falling in love (or hats).
That said, the animation is what is really special in this short. It’s really quite stunning. Here is a little clip of it to give you a feel:
What do you think of The Blue Umbrella? What is your favorite Pixar short?
Overall Grade- B