The Short Story of a Fox and a Mouse, 2015, France.
Made by the the small and talented team;
Camille Chaix- Storyboard, Character Design, Set Design, Colour Script, Layout & Animation.
Hugo Jean-Look Development, Shading, Texturing, Grooming, Lighting, Rendering & Compositing.
Juliette Jordan- Pre-production, Layout & Animation.
Marie Pillier-Scenario, Modeling, Set Design & Animation.
Kevin Roger- Rigging, Bienshapes, Character FX, VFX, Animation, Apeline Productions, Scripting & Colour Grading.
Here is a link to the Short Film on Youtube
The short film follows a fox trying to find food, amongst the snow during winter. When he sees a mouse the chase begins, until they meet 2 owls. Which leads them into danger, when they run onto a frozen lake. They get each other to safety, whilst forming a friendship between them both.
This short film is delightful, taking the audience through a beautiful winter forest. The landscape has been created in a realistic way, with minimal stylisation except for the trees, seen when the mouse is leaping on mushrooms up a tree. The snow and the ice was created to be practically hyper realistic, as both of them reflected light beautifully just as they as they would in real life. Although the ice does loose its’s realism when the fox is trying to escape the lake, as the edges are artificial looking and the ice looses its reflective surface. The snow maintains its authenticity throughout the film, as seen below the snow around the characters reacts just as real snow would, crumbled around them, with layers of shadowing.
The characters themselves are interesting, as they have some very realistic elements whilst still being quite stylised. The detail in the fur of both the mouse and fox is unbelievable, you can see individual strands of fur. When the fox is underwater, protecting the mouse as well as at the end when watching the mouse run off, the complexity of his coat can be seen. Underwater the fur moves and reacts to the fox’s movements as well as how you can see the wind blowing the fox’s fur. It is amazing the level of detail created and the though of the time taken to create these realistic effects is mind boggling.
Although the owls are cute, they are a different less realistic style to both the other characters, making them a contrast to both the scenery and characters. Their colouring is pretty, but it is unnatural. The layering and tones of colours used on their feathers is done nicely. The light really brings them to life when they are flying to find the mouse.
The classical music in the background and the sounds used are well used, reflect on the tone and pace of the scene, particularly with the first appearance of the mouse and the and chase that follows.
The animation is brilliant, it capture the natural movements of the animals, with some added flair especially of the flight of the owls, so it links with the music used.
Overall this short film is beautifully made with great visual effects both of the environment and the characters. Nice and light piece of entertainment put to music.
It made me happy to watch, as I hope it does for you.
Cover image: https://www.artstation.com/artwork/kBdYK
Multiple images; http://mukaimame.blog111.fc2.com/blog-entry-1084.html
Mulitple images came from here; http://www.cgmeetup.net/home/the-short-story-of-a-fox-and-a-mouse/
This is where some of the images came from, the official page of the team https://www.facebook.com/pg/Theshortstoryofafoxandamouse/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1596304580619535