"It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves."

Friday, March 21, 2008

Weekly Movie Recommendations : 22nd March 2008 - 28th March 2008

Genre - Crime/Drama/Thriller
Cast - Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Ruffalo, Robert Downey Jr.
Why to watch it - All the above mentioned people have done some amazing performances by playing the roles of Robert Graysmith, Inspector David Toschi and Paul Avery respectively.

It is a solid suspense thriller that pins you to your seat. A quiet, dialogue-driven thriller that delivers with scene after scene of gut-wrenching anxiety. The cinematography, is great, the darkness and giddiness of the story are perfectly portrayed in the film's visual elements.

Overall a great story told in a remarkable way, very entertaining, with great performances, and wonderful direction.

Enjoy the trailer -

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Carlos Baena is back with a bang !!!

Ok, i apologize !! I have no idea just how i missed posting this one up. I keep rambling upon useless stuff and i totally forgot to inform this one.

Carlos Baena, the super duper talented animator who has contributed hell loads to the awesome animation you see in PIXAR films and recently in Ratatouille, is back with his new revamped site totally with some awesome animation and tons of fun stuff. And the best part is that even with his super busy schedule he is actually updating it quite often. More the merrier !

Bookmark it, add to your rss feed...this is a must see for your regular dose of super informative stuff.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Weekly Movie Recommendations : 15th March 2008 - 21st March 2008

Yes "that" movie is Taare Zameen Par. The directorial debut of the outstanding Indian actor par excellence Aamir Khan.

Genre - Drama
Language - Hindi
Cast - Darsheel Safary, Aamir Khan, Tisca Chopra
Whats It About - About a kid's struggling with dyslexia.
Why To Watch It - This is one of the finest films to have come out in recent times and specially last year across all categories and languages, whether Hindi, English, French, etc.

This is one of those movies, which not only entertains but acts as an enlightenment to your inner self. Its like a wake up call, an eye opener, that wake up this is real.

The kid played by Darsheel Safary, has played the part with utmost perfection. Even after the movie you just cant separate him from his character in the movie. Add to the burden of being the lead protagonist, carrying the entire canvas of the movie from beginning till the end and playing a rather sensitive role of a dyslexic child is no easy task by any means, even for more grown up actors let alone a child. But this is where Darsheel Safary as shown exemplary talent thru his brilliant performance. If the actors role is to get the audience involved, he has succeeded beyond imagination by making the audience feel the same emotions has his family encounters thru out the story. Now it doesn't get more closer than this.

Now to the other supporting actor who in fact is the producer and director of this movie, Aamir Khan. In this age of slick editing, masala commercial flicks, he is one actor who has always gone against the tide and has always come out triumphantly and unscathed. He is proved that film making is much more than getting the audience to the screens, have them enjoy 3 hours of entertainment along with popcorn and cola and also earning money(loads) in the end. And consider the fact that its his directorial debut, i must say Aamir Khan has arrived as a Director with laudable story telling skills and a force to reckon with in this business of making movies.

Overall Taare Zameen Par is a MUST see for everyone, whether parents(specially), kids, people of age group and all nationality. Though its based upon a very sensitive issue of Dyslexia the way its been handled by Aamir Khan is extra ordinary. Instead of grieving and sympathizing with the issue of Dyslexia he has given a completely new perspective and a very positive one at that. He has proved yet again that he is indeed a perfectionist at his craft of acting and now directing. He has shown that a good actor is never bigger than the character he is playing. When the real personality(even a small tint of it) gets seen on the screen, the actor has failed in his endeavors(and his job) of playing the character in the movie. In
Taare Zameen Par we completely forget the real Aamir Khan and instead we are consumed by his on screen character completely. This is what true character performances is all about. Though the original movie is in Hindi, get a DVD with English or whatever language subtitles you are comfortable in and get engrossed in this gem of a movie wrapped up in brilliant cinematic aesthetics.

To NOT watch the movie for any excuse would be nothing less than sinful blasphemy. Do yourself a big favour and watch
Taare Zameen Par before you die ! Trust me its worth it !!!

Have a sneak peek -

Catch up time !

Its been a crazy week what with Class 2 - Body Mechanics slowly and steadily coming to an end here at Animation Mentor. Time is really flying these days, the saying "good times seem to pass by fast" is indeed true. Its just awesome how much i have seem to learn in the past 3 months of Class 2 and overall past 6 months here at Animation Mentor.

The entire credit should go to the Bobby, Shawn and Carlos, the very motivating Mentors, AM support staff (Student Care, Technical, et al) and of course my super class mates. All of you make AM so much fun. I wish all the schools were like this !

Last week was quite eventful, here at AM what with many of my senior class mates getting their dream jobs in PDI, Dreamworks, etc. Yes you read that right and your eye sight is totally fine. Its indeed PDI and Dreamworks. This is what AM is all about. Its make me feel that much more nice and confident that coming to AM was indeed one of my best decisions in life and that i am inching towards my dream job which i am sure would happen some day !

Also i will be soon posting my work from Class 1 and Class 2 (hopefully) as and when i get the time to do it. Class 3 is beginning next month and this is where the real animation with acting and all starts to unfold. But i will definitely try to at least start posting my progress, one by one, so far here at Animation Mentor.

Last week, i saw a movie. It was one of those movies, which stays with you with a long time even after coming out of the theater and makes you see life in a different perception.

In fact the movie was so good (understatement) that i had to delay my post of Weekly Movie Recommendation for last week, because i just had to share this one with you all. And because of my Sunday assignment submission, things got crazy at the end and i just couldn't get time to blog the post.

So more info on "that" movie in my next post !

Till then...cheers !

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Animation Mentor in the news...AGAIN !! :-)

MovieMaker had this article recently.

About MovieMaker

MovieMaker is the nation’s leading magazine on the art and business of making movies.

Founded in 1993 and available on newsstands across North America and parts of Europe, the publication has a bimonthly readership of 165,000. Its companion Website, established in 1995, is one of the most popular movie sites on the World Wide Web.

MovieMaker is a special interest consumer publication with content directed at the audience as well as the artist. Its lively mix of in-depth criticism, festival coverage, do-it-yourself moviemaking techniques and profiles of both rising and legendary Hollywood actors, directors, cinematographers, producers, screenwriters and editors make it a perennial favorite with readers the world over. Although the magazine’s core audience is both independent filmmakers and Hollywood’s leading players, one needn’t be a moviemaker to love MovieMaker, one simply needs to love movies.

For the very first time, Madagascar 2 The Crate Escape : Preview is here !!!

The much anticipated sequel of the extremely enjoyable Dreamworks Animation Feature Madagascar is coming on November 2008.

Have a first sneak peek right here !!! (since its not an official trailer, the video quality is not very good)

Street Fighter IV

Not the best of animation but nice entertainment nevertheless because of its very distinctive watercolor look and feel !

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Its finally out : Wall-E's Official Theatrical Trailer

Hurray !!

Pixar finally released its much awaited official theatrical trailer for its upcoming feature Wall-E. Though some of it has been seen before in short bits and pieces which has been crawling the net since sometime, many of it is totally new and its super cool.

Wall-E hits the theatres on June 27.

Watch the trailer here !

First time ever : Animation Mentor "Tips & Tricks With Shawn Kelly" E-book for FREE !!!

If you have been reading Animation Mentor's Monthly Newsletter you are well aware the section by Shawn Kelly where he shares his amazing knowledge of everything to do with animation in the form of Tips & Tricks.

Now for the first time its been compiled at one place in the form of E-book. For anyone interested in this beautiful craft, this E-book is nothing less than gold. Whether you want to know about Timing, Contrast, Planning, Observation, Exaggeration and so on, its ALL there ! And also if you lucky you may also find some amazing cocktail recipes !!! Come on guys, it cant get better than this...can it ???

Well guess what...it does !!!

When you do sign for the E-book, you can also sign up for an exclusive live QNA session with the author itself, thats right, Shawn Kelly himself. For those of you interested in Animation Mentor, this QNA is a must to attend, its just a sneak peek of what Animation Mentor has to offer for all those having dreams of pursuing animation as a choice of vocation.

Get your Ebook now and here !

Monday, March 10, 2008

Brand New Animation Mentor Student Short Film

Ales Mav a student of Animation Mentor has just finished with his awesome new short film. It also made it to the front page at CG TALK.

Ales, you make us all proud of being able to be a part of this wonderful school with so many amazing talented people around us.

Thanks Ales ! Its truly inspiring !

Watch it right here or visit his site for the high-res version.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Weekly Movie Recommendations : 8th March'08 - 14th March'08

The Last King Of Scotland (2006)

Cast - Forest Whitaker, James McAvoy, Kerry Washington
Why to watch it for - Forest Whitaker's performance as real-life megalomaniac dictator Idi Amin powers this fictionalized political thriller, a blunt and brutal tale about power and corruption.

Sneak peek -

Monday, March 3, 2008

Animation Podcast

Beginning this week, i will be updating as and when a new podcast appears on ANIMATION PODCAST.

Animation Podcast is a site started by Clay Kaytis, who is a supervising animator in Disney. You can read more about Clay Kaytis here.

As to what is Animation Podcast about, this is what Clay has to say -


It’s unfortunate that the lessons and knowledge of many of animation’s past masters only exist in written transcripts of lectures, inteviews or second-hand accounts. It’s always exciting for me to come across a film or audio clip of an animator from years ago, since it gives a glimpse into the era in which they worked and it provides a record of who that person was.

I am honored to work with and meet many of the most talented people in animation today. These individuals have provided me with a continuous education whether it concerns the mechanics and technicalities of building a scene, or the observation and study of movement, acting, and entertaining.

My goal in making The Animation Podcast is to present today’s voices in animation in their own words to create an audible record that is hopefully a source of knowledge, insight, and inspiration for me as well as you.

Thanks for tooning in,


So make sure you keep checking back here, to be updated as and when a new podcast is released. They are an enormous source of good animation right from the best people in the business like JAMES BAXTER, DALE BAER, RAY HARRYHAUSEN to name a few.

The latest is with James Baxter, its part 2.

Catch the part 1 too.

All the previous Animation Podcasts here.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Android : Is this how we will use mobile phones in future ? !

As promised in my earlier post...the future of mobile technology, thanks to GOOGLE, watch it right here !!!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Weekly Movie Recommendations : 1st March - 7th March

The Pursuit Of Happyness (2006)

Cast - Will Smith, Jaden Smith
Why To Watch It - It defines the spirit of living. No matter how everything seems to be sinking in and around you, you need to keep afloat. This movie will definitely inspire you to keep fighting and keep your spirits alive no matter what situation you are in. And a lot of credit goes to its main protagonist Will Smith. He has played the role to perfection.

Have a sneak peek -

Time Management ? What is that !!!!

There i go again, as you can see i have not been able to post as much as i want too and this time i also missed the Weekly Movie Recommendation for last week which i have been told is eagerly waited by millions of people around the globe !!! ....... Ok, i admit i made that up....not millions but i am sure(hope) atleast some of you would have been checking what movie i have for you week after week.

So as a compensation for last week, in my next immediate post, along with the Weekly Movie Recommendation, i also would like to share the future of mobile phones thanks to Android, which is an open source platform for mobile phones started by Google(yes they are their best yet again). Though this video is more on the technical topic of things and geeks would be more inclined to savor this, the reason i am sharing this with you here is because i feel this particular mobile platform(other platforms are the Symbian, Java, Windows Mobile, Palm OS and so on) will change the way EACH and EVERY having a mobile phone uses his/her mobile phone in their day to day life.

The future is here and now !

So if you want a glimpse, make sure you keep a check on my next post !!!

Till then adieu...