Wolfwalkers is a delight

Wolfwalkers is a delight

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Cartoon Saloon’s Wolfwalkers is the perfect animated film rich in story and animation steaming now on AppleTV

The Apple Original Film Wolfwalkers is from the two-time Academy Award-nominated director Tomm Moore and director Ross Stewart, and co-produced by the award-winning animation studios Cartoon Saloon and Melusine Productions that is Best Motion Picture, Animated by the Golden Globes. In this film we have a classic fish out of water story with a Irish folktale twist. Robyn is a young English girl (voiced by Honor Kneafsey) and widower father Bill Goodfellows (voiced by Sean Bean) who move to a pre-colonial Irish town of Kilkenny for a job (story as old as time). Where Robyn has a hard time fitting in with the locals and a absent father trying to keep his promotion. They are interlopers with Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell (voiced by Simon McBurney) bringing Christianity and a city encroaching on the forest. Bill’s job is to kill the wolves so that Kilkenny can expand. The conflict is that the Moll MacTire (voiced by Maria Doyle Kennedy) and her wild child Mebh (voiced by Eva Whittaker) and the wolves they lead don’t want to go or even want to trouble the townies. Robin at first wants the freedom to explore and hunt with her father who misses the freedom of England. While Mebh is on her own with the wolves when her mother disappears and she feels that she has to protect the forest while waiting for her return. It’s a story of two strong willed girls who become friends despite differences and expectation of a woman/girl place in society. 

Moll & Mebh MacTire

The film has a fast pace and a lot of story to tell from feminism, environment, respect for other’s beliefs, and the freedom to be a child. Wolfwalkers succeeds with building the mythology, connecting with the audience (have tissue ready), and is visually gorgeous and rich. It’s a mix of hand-drawn and digital animation that utilizes shapes to create sharp differences between city folk and the forest dwellers. I loved the design of Moll from her round earth mother look that reminded me of a favorite art piece. I attended the Wolkwalkers Virtual Press Conference and was able to ask two questions. If you want to see the full press conference see the links below.

They are able to create depth and movement that at subsequent watching revealed more and more. Of course as a fan of Cartoon Saloon I am not surprised that they have brought experience from previous projects to this delightful film. It’s a cohesive animated film that has a team that worked together to transport viewers to another mythical time. I found the selection of the musical score enriched scenes and the sound of the city/forest made it seem even more real to mee. It was wonderful to hear from the press conference what the talent that worked as a team to bring the animated film to life.

I can’t recommend Wolfwalkers enough from the voice actor cast, the visual animation artstyles, and the story it is intriguing and engrossing. The colors of the forest are bright, sharp and lush while the city style is flatter, darker and makes me almost feel the cobblestone under my feet. The movement of the animals when they invade the city is a stark difference between the designs. It’s a wonderful film for viewers of all ages that has a stories that allow you to connect to it. I connected with the wolves and yearning for the wild freedom of the forest. 

What did you connect with? Leave a comment below ….

Panelists: Production designer/Co-Art director MARIA PAREJA, Head of Compositing SERGE UME, FX Lead NARISSA SCHANDER, Rough Animation Supervisor SVEND ROTHMANN BONDE, Wolfvision Supervisor / Animator EIMHIN MCNAMARA, Character Designer FEDERICO PIROVANO

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