An old man who is the headmaster of a primary school bordering the ocean paints a picture of a whale, an animal he had seen so often off the coast when he was a boy and now sees all too seldom. He reminisces about his youth, when he simply considered whales a source of food, though he vividly remembers a time when a whale was speared by a whaling ship. He knew of no other way to treat whales then. But that day he sees the first whale he has done in a long time - and it is beached against the rocks. He races out of the school to come to the whale's aid...
An old man resides in a city mostly submerged by water, living in a home he had to build on top of his old one. His daily routine now consists of smoking his pipe, drinking wine, watching television and eating the fish he catches. Living alone in the silent desolation of the elderly he is surrounded by photographs but no people. One day he drops his pipe into the water and it disappears into his old, submerged home. To retrieve it he rents a scuba suit, but once he descends into the place he used to live he is overwhelmed by the memories of the life he used to have - the family he used to know.
Both of these shorts show old men melancholically remembering their youth - and each are surprisingly sympathetic and touching in their depiction of these men, La Maison en Petits Cubes especially so.
Both La Maison en Petit Cubes and Man and Whale deal heavily with nostalgia. In both cases the protagonist is an old man looking back over events in his life. While this is dealt with in more detail in la Maiso en Petits Cubes, if you enjoyed one of these, then definitely watch the other, especially when both are also beautifully animated.
After a miserly man consumes a batch of freshly-fallen cherries (seeds included), he finds himself in a hairy and unfortunate situation - a small cherry tree has sprouted from his balding forehead! With his mountain-like head becoming a tourist attraction, what's a miser to do?
Featuring a very similar visual style, these two shorts by Koji Yamamura both deal with an older character - Atama Yama, admittedly, with biting, detached satire, while Man and Whale has more sympathy for its protagonist.
One dark and blustery night, a lone doctor is called to a village ten miles away in order to help with a sick patient. Quickly losing his servant to ill-intentioned hands and whisked away upon frightening horses, the doctor meets his young and ailing patient under the scrutinizing eyes of his family. It is here that the doctor will try to discover the root of the boy’s illness and also try to make some sense out of his own psyche.
Koji Yamamura made these two shorts in relatively short succession from each other, and as far as visual style goes it certainly shows. There really isn't much resemblance in plot, but if you've liked the visual style of one and want to see another short with the same look, well this is one.
When young Ai makes an impromptu trip to the Japanese city of Kobe, she has no idea what to do after arriving. Luckily, help is at hand in the form of Kazami Kei, a giant chicken-man in a black tracksuit who decides to take time out of busy schedule to guide her around the city. As the pair travels around, Kazami hopes to open the Ai’s eyes to the fun of the Harborland amusement park, the joy of rotating cafés, and the beauty of Nunobiki Falls.
Charming little adverts are first that will completely change you're view on them in the last few seconds.
In Kobe it's a character disappointment and in Whale it's a preachy let-down.
Watch both if you enjoyed that "Yay! Yay! Awwwww, pfft..." feeling.
In a post-apocalyptic wasteland, a scruffy man wanders the desert in his junky car. In this world, anything desired can be attained by pushing buttons on a special kind of vending machine. The man is able to get new clothes, a snappy new car, water galore, new "pets" to accompany him on his journey, and even an unusual hair cut; but all he really wants is the most important thing of all: a new Earth…
While Man and Whale is about saving whales and Push is a social satire on consumerism and nuclear warfare, in essence they both are nice shorts about preserving our planet that come from very talented animators - Koji Yamamura and Osamu Tezuka respectively. So, if you're interested in this topic or simply have 5 minutes to spare, check them both.