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Comment on On Your Mark! (1979)

There's another sci-fi animated short directed by Lev Shukalyukov for Belarusfilm, ''He Came Flying Only Once'' (Russian title: Он прилетал лишь однажды, 1978). There's an upload of the film on YouTube without subs: The short relies more on images than dialogue, but it would be good if subs were made for it.

Another noteworthy Soviet sci-fi animation is ''The Blue Planet'' (Russian title: Голубая планета, 1971) made by Kazakhfilm, also on YouTube without subs: It's very reminiscent of Rene Laloux's ''Fantastic Planet'' (1973), even though it was released two years before. Might be worth making subs for this too.

Just putting these out there. I know a little Russian, but not enough to make subs.

Great upload here btw.

Replies: >>2 >>6

Comment on The Return of the Prodigal Parrot (1984)

>Thanks for the great memories :)

You're welcome. :) It went with the era, I think. Did you see the article I linked to in the "series" page? (it's in Russian, but you can use Yandex or Google Translate to read it) I don't know how much I agree, but I thought it was interesting to see how the character and the series is seen nowadays (at least, by some of those who give it enough thought to write articles about it). For what it's worth, the opinion of someone I know who owned a parrot, when I described Kesha's character to them, said "it seems that the writers knew what parrots are like!"

Here's the conclusion of the article (from Yandex Translate, manually fixed-up where needed):


The cartoon is certainly witty and its phrases have long since become quotes that live separately from the original source (about Tahiti and "they don't feed us too badly", about "bubblegum" and so on). In the animation and the dynamics, all is wonderful. And therefore, even more disgusting. A mediocre cartoon (or movie, or book) will not really affect one's consciousness.

However, the main character here is a nasty piece of work, and even the mice from "Leopold the Cat" are better. There, at least, the eternal confrontation of cats and mice is played out, but here is just vile betrayal carried out from film to film. What is terrible about this plot? The very possibility of being a scumbag and setting up loved ones...

Everything is served up through a fairy tale. From the mid-1980s, they [that is, "they"] began to actively lay the foundations for a new morality - moreover, the creators themselves did not even realize what they were doing. Kesha is an ideal symbol of the Perestroika society with its endless cries of: "Give! We want changes! Where are our jeans and gum?! Give us music videos and tape players!"

I will note that the prodigal parrot's tastes are typically philistine, pro-Western, and the not-on-brand Vovka, deprived of prestigious imported benefits (which he does not need), constantly turns out to be a fool. He is humiliated, forsaken, but invariably they come back to him with broken wings.

The question arises: why are you needed, Kesha? Why are you loved? Yes, in the 2000s, several more sequels were filmed, but they were completely disastrous, because Kesha was a phenomenon during Perestroika, and in the 2000s, children were already watching other birds, fish and monsters.


I think there was indeed a bit of a trend of "cool" characters acting nasty and then either having nothing bad happen to them or being 100% forgiven by their victims in 1980s Soviet animation. Never a majority trend, but it was there. Besides "Kesha", I can think of the aforementioned mice in "Leopold" and Butyrin's "If I Were My Dad" (especially the second one).

Comment on The Return of the Prodigal Parrot (1984)

I remember watching this with my sibling many times as a kid, though I'm not really sure what made us so obsessed with these series. Watching now, I can't even make it to the first 30 seconds without cringing, but the feel of nostalgia does make my heart warm. Thanks for the great memories :)

Replies: >>2

Comment on Long Live Perseus! (1993)

Oops, I just realized that this is part of Merry-Go-Round (Весёлая карусель) #26. I'm going to change the title and add a new default video once the rest of it has English subtitles.

Comment on December 32 (1988)

This was a real pain to translate, but I think it's worth it - it's a very enjoyable film. The art style strongly reminded me Andrey Svislotskiy's 1992 Hypnerotomachia (even a bit of the animation is copied), and indeed, the same art director, Yevgeniy Sheshenin, worked on both films, and Svislotskiy was an animator on this one. But the credits for this film are very incomplete and neither are credited.

Neither are they listed in the English subtitles (because there are song lyrics that need translating), so I'm going to list the credits in this comment, just so they exist somewhere online:
Director & screenplay - Vladimir Samsonov
Art director - Yevgeniy Sheshenin
Composer - Anatoliy Kiselev
Lyrics - Leonid Derbenev
Vocalists - Pavel Smeyan & Lyubov Privina
Instrumental Ensemble "Dobry Molodtsy"
Camera - Ernst Gaman
Sound - N. Kudrina
Director's assistants - Z. Kredushinskaya, A. Grishanova
Art director assistant - A. Tsybin
Backgrounds - L. Yanelis
Animators - A. Kolkov, N. Bazeltseva, A. Svislotskiy, Ye. Delyusin, D. Naumov, Yu. Andreyev, I. Gundyreva, A. Yurkovskaya, M. Zaytsev, V. Barbe
Montage - L. Ruban
Script editor - A. Feodoridi
Production director - Lidiya Varentsova

Comment on A New Year Journey (1959)

I think this one is very mediocre, unfortunately - uninspired and unoriginal art direction, a silly script, a "Ded Moroz" who is too much like the Western Santa Claus, weak characters. Which surprises me, as it comes from the director of the really well-done "Wolf and Seven Little Goats" of only two years before.

Comment on Treasure Island (part 2). Captain Flint's Treasures (1988)

I suppose Mr. Icon wanted to publicly thank his wife. That's a fair point, I think that line should probably be moved to the end. It's distracting to have messages from the translator before the film is over.

A more serious problem that I didn't notice until now is that the subs become out of sync not long into the film... I've now corrected it, but the final values I ended up with are really weird (0.998 and 0.999 multipliers for the English and Russian subs).

Comment on Alyosha's Tales (1964)

The first time I watched this, I didn't realize the likely reason that Alyosha's parents are always "too busy" to take him to visit his grandma...

Comment on Treasure Island (part 2). Captain Flint's Treasures (1988)

Wait, why does at line 418 the English subs says:

>(The fansubber wants to thank his most amazing wife!)

Replies: >>2

Comment on When the Master Was a Horse (2004)

I think this is probably one of the weaker films of the first batch of "Mountain of Gems" shorts. Even the other film from the same year by the same two directors feels a lot more alive. The art style isn't too appealing, and the script isn't all that interesting overall, despite being fun in spots. Though Tatarskiy is listed as director, it doesn't feel like he was really able to devote a lot of energy to this one.

Also, like Valentin Telegin's other films, this one feels "Eastern" - nothing wrong with that, but it feels wrong in a Belorussian story.

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