REVIEW: ‘Jinsha,’ China’s priciest animation film, is awkward curiosity

Dec. 03, 2010 | 8:56 a.m.

Robert Abele reviewed “The Dreams of Jinsha” for the Los Angeles Times, here’s an excerpt…

Whether any animation industry can ultimately compete with Japanese anime and the Disney/Pixar-led American juggernaut remains to be seen, but for now “The Dreams of Jinsha” at least marks a painstakingly if awkwardly assembled hand-drawn entry from Chinese animators.

Supposedly the priciest animated film ever produced in China (yet still a fraction of what something like “Toy Story 3” costs), it attempts a wistful merging of childlike cuteness, anime-inspired fantasy adventure and cautionary fable in the story of a self-obsessed, modern-day city boy who is whisked 3,000 years back to an ancient kingdom named Jinsha. There, young Xiao Long encounters a peaceful people, a nice princess, an elephant god and a lush, pristine natural landscape, which for moviegoers amounts to a methodically flipped pictorial of beautifully rendered (though somewhat static) panoramas of rapturous color.

Happy primary hues give way to dark, stained overlays, though, when evil forces — namely nebulous black swarms and a featureless, laser-shooting giant — transform the countryside into a wasteland…

THERE’S MORE, READ THE REST

– Robert Abele

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