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After a two-year hiatus, the ANIMATION SHOW OF SHOWS returns with the 22nd edition comprised of 10 films — nine recent, along with one restored classic — which deal with both the anxieties and hopes of a world faced with a seemingly endless series of existential crises. All are inventive, their tone ranges from the whimsical to the profound; their techniques, from stop-motion to hand-drawn to computer-aided. 

“Animation is a natural medium for dealing with abstract ideas and deeply felt concerns, and the ANIMATION SHOW OF SHOWS has always strived to scour the world for the most affecting and engaging films,” says founder and curator Ron Diamond. “While the recent films were conceived and some finished, before the Covid lockdowns, all but the most abstract display a concern with the ways in which we are all interconnected…or sadly alienated from our sense of human connection.” 

This general issue appears in many forms and styles: While “Beyond Noh” cleverly shows the prevalence of masks through all cultures, and “Rain” humorously explores the dangers of groupthink, “Ties” takes the notion of connectedness from the metaphorical to the actual. 

The nine new films come from Europe, Asia, and North America. The program culminates with a striking restored 4K digital remaster by the Academy Film Archive of Frederic Back’s classic 1987 Oscar-winner, “The Man Who Planted Trees.”

Beyond Noh — Patrick Smith/Kaori Ishida (U.S./Japan)  |  Empty Places — Geoffroy de Crecy (France)  |  Beseder (Good and Better) — Gil Alkabetz (Germany)  |  Zoizoglyphe — Jeanne Apergis (France)  | Rain (Deszcz) — Piotr Milczarek (Poland)  |  Average Happiness — Maja Gehrig (Switzerland)  |  Aurora — Jo Meuris (U.S.)  |  Yes-People — Gísli Darri Halldórsson (Iceland)  |  Ties — Dina Velikovskaya (Germany/Russia)  |  The Man Who Planted Trees — Frederic Back (Canada)

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 2 • 7:15

$12.50 General  |  $9. Senior • Youth • Matinée  |  $7 CFI Members