October 22, 2015

Robot on the Road

Well, if you saw Ex Machina and are looking for some low-brow humor to cleanse the palate of all that high-brow pomposity, you'd have a hard time doing better than Robot on the Road.

This gorgeously drawn short also has a robot (obviously) with low and ulterior motives, and generous amounts of gratuitous nudity. But veteran animator Hiroyuki Okiura makes no bones about writing and directing what is basically a ten-minute long dirty joke.

Being up front about what you're up to and not pretending the subject matter is more than what it is always makes for better art. Robot on the Road is funnier (on purpose) and orders of magnitude more clever than the hundred long minutes of Ex Machina.

Writing a "good" dirty joke (or, for that matter, any run-of-the-mill episode in any run-of-the-mill police procedural) takes more talent that wallowing in the manipulative angst of unlikable people and their meaningless lives.

Hiroyuki Okiura also directed the heartwarming and family friendly A Letter to Momo. I don't doubt that having a healthy respect for traditional moral values makes it easier to poke gentle fun at them.

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