French Animated Werewolf in Tales of the Night

I love animated movies; whether it’s American, Italian, Japanese, –whatever, –I’ve always just collectively referred to them as ‘kids movies’, even though of course, not all animated films are kids’ movies. On top of that, from what I’ve read about Michel Ocelot’s past work, Princes et Princesses, it’s a bit artsy. Ocelot uses a combination of shadows and 3D animation to create a unique and beautiful landscape of color and fairy tale surroundings. These fairy tales aren’t the same as what we’re used to here, however; no mermaids or Cinderellas, –but quite a lot of magic, tragedy, with only the occasional happy ending or two.

In fact, the first story in the new collection of fairy tales, the film ‘Tales of the Night’, is called ‘The Werewolf’. The rest of the fairy tales follow a similar vein, and are a little darker than the average Disney classic. Screen Daily talks in more detail about the film, and the classic stories it tells:

The first tale The Werewolf is the story of two sisters in love with the same prince. He becomes engaged to the older one, much to the sadness of the younger one who has loved him all her life. However, when the prince announces to his fiancée that he is in fact a werewolf, she abandons him and locks him forever in his wolf state.

In the Caribbean-flavoured Ti Jean and Belle-Sans-Connaitre, a boy called Ti Jean finds himself in the land of the dead where he must appease a giant bee, mongoose and iguana in order to win the heart of Belle-Sans-Connaitre.

In The Chosen One and The City Of Gold, set in Aztec times, a young man arrives in the city of gold on the day when a beautiful young girl is to be chosen as a human sacrifice to the monster which protects the city. He resolves to break the cycle of killing.

The fourth story, Boy Tam-Tam, sees Ocelot come back to the Africa of Kirikou. A would-be tam tam player is dismissed by everyone in his village until he learns how to play the magic tam-tam which will save them from their enemies.

Not exactly the stories your mom used to read to you before bed, right? These tales are taken from folklore all over the world, and illustrate many different cultures and traditions; from Europe to Africa, there’s something for everyone, and the artwork is both captivating and visually stunning. Not only that, but the last time anything came very close to being remotely serious about a werewolf in an animated film, would be Beauty and the Beast, –and whether Beast was a werewolf is debatable. It’ll be nice to see a werewolf in an animated movie again… though hopefully, not traumatizing to young viewers.

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