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The Mascot (1934)

by Nicholas Sammond

A sick child wishes she could have an orange, but her family is too poor. The child's stuffed dog is thrown in a box with other toys to be sold, though all of them come to life. They end up in the underworld of the streets, a hellish situation in which strange creatures and skeletons torment and capture the toys. The mascot finally escapes, gets an orange, and returns to its owner.

The sensitive and playful movement of this early film is exquisite, and reigns in a history of stop-motion masters such as the Quay Brothers and Jan Svankmajer. It is interesting to note the ways in which Starewicz plays on life/motion and object-ness/non-motion, in ways both similar and different to contemporary and later stop-motion artists. This is perhaps most obvious in the hellish scene of skeleton creatures - when the motion and animation of “objects” and/or “the dead” become terribly fearful, even to the animated toys themselves.

The Mascot (1934)

A sick child wishes she could have an orange. The child's stuffed dog is thrown in a box with other toys, though all come to life. They end up in the underworld of the streets. The mascot finally escapes, gets an orange, and returns to its owner.

from The Mascot (1934)
Creator: Władysław Starewicz
Posted by Nicholas Sammond
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