In a shocking twist of events, a film unassociated with Disney or Pixar won the Golden Globe for Best Animated Film this year, beating out Frozen II, Toy Story 4, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, and The Lion King. The winning film? Laika Studios’ Missing Link, a stop motion film about a nice-guy Sasquatch who meets a Hugh-Jackman-voiced Hugh-Jackman-type and learns about tolerance. Though its plot isn’t too unique from recent animated films, this movie has some of the most spectacular visuals of any I’ve seen, animated or not. Remembering that Missing Link was crafted the same way as Rudolph, one can only sit and gape at the positively exquisite palette of colors and shapes onscreen. Laika’s animators’ stunning technical skill in manipulating clay figurines on a handmade set is on full display here. Yes, Missing Link lost its studio $75 million dollars (more than Cats lost, but you all don’t endlessly mock this movie, do you?). But the fact that this film successfully overcame Elsa, Toothless, and Simba, becoming the first-ever non-CGI film to win the Golden Globe, should raise the eyebrows of not only general animated-movie-goers but also those scrutinizing the industries of animation and innovative cinema. To channel Emperor Palpatine, we will be watching Laika’s career with great interest.
Photo Credit: Metrograph/Laika Studios.