Monday, October 27, 2008


The Waterloo Festival for Animated Cinema web site is now live.

LINK to WFAC for the complete schedule. I'll be there to present From Inside. Hope to see you there, too.

Highlights of the festival for me will be getting a chance to see Grave of the Fireflies on the big screen. It's been a few years since I last saw the film, and (coincidentally) I've been thinking about it lately. Grave of the Fireflies is the only Studio Ghibli film my two kids haven't seen yet. They are huge Miyazaki fans, so I feel as though I've been depriving them... but I wanted to wait until they were old enough to feel the beautifully heavy weight of this story. It's finally time!

I'm also looking forward to Quirino Cristiani: the Mystery of the First Animated Movies, Nocturna, We Are The Strange, Genius Party, and Rebuild of Evangelion 1.0: You Are (Not) Alone

From Inside screens Saturday, November 15 at 11:30pm at the Gig Theater.


The UTOPIALES web site is now live.
Looks like an awesome film festival.
If you are in Nantes, check it out. If not, visit the site.


...and, again, I have to note how brilliant the babelfish translator is. Everything I write needs to go through this filter. Here is the Utopiales From Inside write-up translated from French to English:


"The atomic apocalypse left behind it a burned Ground, strewn with turned russet corpses, crashed to pieces bricks and ploughed up buildings. Only survivors of this pathetic humanity, passengers of a vapor express train, which advances without precise goal, inlassablement, in the middle of the famine and of devastation. Where do they go? Nowhere, and without round trip ticket. Only one certainty: The EEC, one of embarked, carries a child who will be perhaps the last. Only, it tests costs which costs to cling to this chimerical hope… Adapted of his graphic novel ├ęponyme, John Bergin delivers here a powerful meditation on the rather illusory perenniality of our companies, as much as a wild parabola against the myth of progress at all costs. Price of best cartoon film in Sitges in October 2008."


That is now the official From Inside synopsis.

Russet corpses:

Thursday, October 16, 2008


From Inside will be screening at the 11th edition of Future Film Festival in Italy.

Check out the link above. Awesome film festival.


Kind of a travelogue-y thing to do, but here are a few shots from Sitges. Strange that almost every photo I took in Sitges is empty of people. That was not intentional. There were a lot of people there. Well... maybe it's not that strange, actually. If you need someone to turn a major resort location in Spain into a ghost town, that would be me.

Monday, October 13, 2008


From Inside wins Best Animated Film at SITGES 08.

Complete list of winners:

Thanks to everyone at Sitges. I had a great time at the festival. In a place so full of bright colors, sunlight, gracious people and good food, it was nice to find such a deep appreciation for all things dark, depressing and disturbing.

Friday, October 10, 2008


Here's a review of the From Inside screening at the 2008 Dead Channels festival in SF. The rain is perfect:


My schedule for October 11:

10:00 : Sita Sings The Blues. Looking forward to this one. Nina is a fellow sufferer (Animartyr), who, when she says "I made this film by myself." means it. You'll see maybe 3 or 4 names in the credits. What? No Render Wranglers? No Character Designers? No Colorists?
11:45 : Anamorph
17:15 : Holy shit I will be seeing Miyazaki's Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea
19:45 or 22:45 or City of Ember or Religulous


My schedule for October 10.
12:45 : Dead Space
16:30 : The Burrowers
18:30 : Idiots and Angels
22:45 : Let The Right One In

Couple of From Inside reviews on-line (via always-accurate Babelfish translation):

"John Bergin spent to lengths years in front of his computer..."

"John Bergin shapes the trip with impressive images..."


UPDATE October 10:

The Burrowers:
Any time a genre film is set in the 1800's I'm there. Great performances, great photography, perfect color grading. Watch for Doug Hutchison's performance the first time his authority is undermined. Love it when actors take you someplace unexpected.

Idiots and Angels: First time I've seen Bill Plympton's work on a big screen. The size and the light did great justice to his quick, scribbly lines. Felt like watching an animated film on a huge 20' X 50' piece of paper. Lots of hallmark Plympton visual puns.

Let The Right One In: Another film that's as great as you've heard. Tomas Alfredson introduced the film saying it was made at great expense of time... love... and silence. The silence was the best part of the film. If I were releasing the soundtrack to Let The Right One In it would just be 74 minutes of the sound of snow falling -- with occasional boots crunching over ice.

Wandered around Barcelona a little. Easy city. They need better street signs, but the ornamentation found everywhere more than makes up for it. A nice change of pace from the bluntness of home; "You Are Here!" (Americans show up to a knife fight with a gun, Spaniards show up to a knife fight with a bejeweled sword, satin pants, suede boots, and great food. It would be a draw).

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Holy shit, does Sitges loves science fiction and horror. Amazing festival. It's been an honor to bring my depressing little film to a place with such an intense love for all things dark. Two From Inside screenings were held at Cine El Retiro, a 600 seat theater located in the center of Sitges by the sea. El Retiro has a great, relaxed traditional feel with awesome projection and sound quality. From Inside never looked so great.

El Retiro from outside and from inside:

Have seen many great films worth recommending. Absolutely loved The Good, The Bad, The Weird. Incredible cinematography -- my favorite shots being those from a camera mounted to the side of gatling gun blasting away... puts all other shakey-cam shots to shame. This one also bears out my theory re: Trains = Failsafe Cinematography. Riot of a story, too. Why it took so long for someone to blend a spaghetti western with Road Warrior is beyond me -- a match made in heaven (or in the desert). Also: kick-ass score. Think it was picked up by Sony, so maybe it will be widely available. If not, seek it out.

Also greatly enjoyed JCVD (it's as great, if not better, than you've heard). I only speak a few words of French. Despite understanding only 1/2 the dialog of Van Damme's levitating soliloquy, it was still deeply moving.

Dante 01. I have always loved the production design of French science fiction. It has a sense of grabbing whatever is at-hand from a hardware store or toy store, and somehow assembling the plain every-day parts into something otherworldly. I think the French were DV rebels from the time before there was even DV. The rocket-launcher employed by Bruce Willis in The Fifth Element was just a model rocket from a toy store. And it was awesome. Dante 01 is worth watching for set-design alone. Loved the switches, knobs, walls and costumes... and nice puke as well. Clear puke. Best kind.