Cover of "Wallace & Gromit - The Curse of...

Cover via Amazon

I love stop-motion animation, whether it is King Kong climbing the Empire State Building, Jason and the Argonauts fighting of a marauding band of sword wielding skeletons, or Wallace and Gromit flying to the moon to get some cheese. I’m not exactly sure why the reason this is though. Perhaps I just appreciate the pain-staking efforts that the animators go to bring an inanimate lump of clay to life. I know that I would be extremely frustrated if I laboured for a whole day and only had three seconds of film to show for it. I feel sad that stop-motion animation and traditional hand-drawn animation have largely been replaced by CGI, whilst I absolutely loathe motion-capture animation. (Yes, James Cameron and Robert Zemeckis, motion-capture is a form of animation, regardless of what you say. It is also a very poor cheating form of animation!)

In recent years stop-mo has undergone a bit of a renaissance. In 2009 Henry Sellick released his brilliant animated version of Alan Moore’s Coraline to great acclaim, whilst Wes Anderson’s version of Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr. Fox was also very good. Britain’s Aardman Animation have been at the forefront of stop-motion animation for the last two decade thanks to Wallace and Gromit.

Curse of the Were-Rabbit is Wallace & Gromit’s first foray into feature-length films. Aardman were previously responsible for the great Chicken Run in 2000, but Wallace & Gromit have been around since the early 90s thanks to great short films like A Grand Day Out, The Wrong Trousers and A Close Shave. A Grand Day Out was nominated for the Academy Award for best animated short film in 1993, whilst both A Close Shave and The Wrong Trousers later won this award.

Whilst I probably do prefer the shorts and Chicken Run to Curse of the Were-Rabbit, it is still a great movie to watch. The animation is great, as it always is from Aardman, and Wallace & Gromit are as enjoyable as ever. However I do think that perhaps they are both more suited to short films than feature-length ones.