[Note: This was a draft I made back in 2012 about Garri Bardin. I was not sure anymore why I haven't finished or published this, but, the write up seems "good" as it is, lmao, so posting it here, fuck, the way I write never change, I still suck.]
There was this one time when we were tasked to have a report on Modern Art forms in our Humanities class, our group leader asked me to report on Animation, by that time I really like to report on cinema, but she gave that to our co-member whom I've yet to know and has no courage to ask to so I ended up doing that Animation report.
It was always a hobby for me to consult Wikipedia, since it almost have most of the basic things to cover, I never really got serious on it at first. But as I've explored more on the subject, I've gotten deeply interested in it to the point of wanting to do it as well.
Of all the forms, I've been always interested of things that are made by hand: Hand-drawn 2D and stop-motion animation. Unlike computer-generated animation, hand-made animation made seems much closer to it's creator's vision: all those hand prints on clay and unequal lines on drawings made me feel it's humanity. Just like what I search always on movies, even on extremely fictional beings portrayed, I still wanted to feel the human. Most of the time, it's beauty comes from it's imperfections and how the animator utilize them.
And so, I've searched for a lot more animators, especially on stop-motion. Unlike live-actions, animation is a safe place for artist to express their views without endangering actors' image. So the artist could go all out with them. I've seen animation used for propaganda, for advocacy, and as love letters. There are also those personal and highly subjective ones, which usually interest me most.
I've only learned recently of Garri Bardin, who have just released a DVD of his first feature, The Ugly Duckling. I've decided to see some of his earlier works before seeing this one. Bardin is an animator from Russia whose works start from the latter years of the USSR.
In Konflikt (Conflict, 1983), Bardin used matchsticks to depict conflicts and insecurities among humans and nations. How big every nation would act on little things that could be just fixed manually and not necessarily through war. War was never a solution. It critiques war and it's effect: that winning a battle is not really something to celebrate.
Bardin adapted Puss in Boots in 1995, I always thought that there was no moral lesson from the fairy tale, Bardin filled that gap. Here, Bardin updated the fairy tale to the 20th century: commercialism, pseudo-philantrophy, and wide range poverty. A plane dropped donations to a poor community, and our drunk protagonist gained nothing but a cat inside an American Flag bag. The cat was more or less the America and it's promise of a better life to everyone in the world. The drunkard is the gullible poor man who in the end become a victim of his greed.