I missed that a Franco-Belgian film won an Oscar this year. No, it wasn’t a huge blockbuster; it was the animated short “Mr. Hublot” Mr. Hublot is an old bachelor who lives a little, well-regulated life in his little, well-regulated apartment. In his world, people are patched together from mechanical bits. The withdrawn little man is dwarfed by the machines that surround him. He suffers from toc, a short form for trouble obsessionnel compulsif, or OCD in English. His orderly world is turned upside-down by the arrival of a little dog named Robot Pet. (Sounds like the effect that two cats had on my home!)
The film is written, produced and directed by Frenchman Laurent Witz – his first animated short, He collaborated with Belgian sculptor Stéphane Halleux, noted for creating fantastic figures, including a certain little fellow known as Mr. Hublot. The co-director was animator Alexandre Espigares of Luxembourg who has also worked on projects such as Star Wars – The Clone Wars and Happy Feet 2. I’ve only been able to watch clips thus far, but I’m hoping to get a copy of Mr. Hublot when I’m in France this summer. It looks simply charming. If any of you have seen it, I’d love to hear what you think.