I swung by the Animation Show at Music Box Friday night, and holy crap, the quality and creativity of the short films knocked me out. Mike Judge (Beavis and Butthead, King of the Hill, Office Space, Idiocracy) and Don Hertzfeldt (the brilliant Rejected) teamed up to create a traveling film festival, now in its third iteration, that screens the best animated short films around. The 12 in this year's program include vivid CGI pieces, squiggly hand-drawn animations, dreamy distortions, abstract geometry; some are silly, some are surprisingly evocative.
The highlight of show was Hertzfeldt's "Everything Will Be OK," which packs more originality and voice into its 17 minutes than a lot of feature-length films I suffered through this year. It blends Hertzfeldt's signature bare-bones imagery with a fantasy-tinged bleakness to stunning effect. The other heavy-hitter in the line-up was "Nine" (watch a clip ) a computer-animated nonverbal story set in a mechanical wasteland. Tim Burton would give his left nut to be half this imaginative.