Animated Short from Pixar Creators Deals with Loss and Grief (Things We Love)

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Borrowed TimeQuorum

Pixar’s at it again. Well, two of their animators are, at least. and released a brand new short film they made as a side project called Borrowed Time. It’s currently available on Vimeo for a limited time, along with a making-of feature. As with anything tangentially related to Pixar, this film, clocking in just under seven minutes, is both breathtakingly animated and heartbreakingly real. The animation is the high-quality caliber audiences have to expect from the people working at Pixar, with no detail left unnoticed, such as the lead character’s hair blowing in the breeze and the pain etched into every crevice of his face.

Like other projects from Pixar and its team members, it’s the emotion of the short that lands the hardest. From the struggles of single parenting in Finding Nemo, to the first ten minutes of Up, to the near destruction of the toys in Toy Story 3, and the fate of Bing Bong in Inisde Out, audiences have now come to expect tears with Pixar films. But Borrowed Time tackles some truly dark themes — grief, loss, guilt, and closure — with minimal dialogue in a prime example of show, don’t tell. Guilt is an extremely complicated emotion to deal with, especially when it’s tied with death, mortality, and finding closure. Deciding to forgive oneself after going through these torrent of emotions is even more difficult, but something that is very real and human. This short will settle into your bones and nestle there, disturbing you and cutting deep to emotions that are hard to access. And it’s all a testament to these creators as storytellers and the medium of animation.

In the making-of feature, Hamou-Lhadj explained: “A goal for us was to make something that kind of contested the notion of animation being a genre, and one for children specifically. We really wanted to make something that was a little bit more adult in the thematic choices, and show that animation could be a medium to tell any sort of story.”

The film is only available for a limited time, so check it out now!

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