Neighbours | Norman McLaren [1952]

We just found through the blog “los vacíos urbanos” this fascinating film directed and produced by Norman McLaren in 1952.

The story is as simple as the story of two men, Jean-Paul Ladouceur and Grant Munro, who live peacefully in adjacent cardboard houses, as neighbours. When a flower blooms between their houses, they fight each other to the death over the ownership of the single small flower. It is a representation of the essence of human behaviors. Norman McLaren pointed:

“I was inspired to make Neighbours by a stay of almost a year in the People’s Republic of China. Although I only saw the beginnings of Mao’s revolution, my faith in human nature was reinvigorated by it. Then I came back to Quebec and the Korean War began. (…) I decided to make a really strong film about anti-militarism and against war.”

The film uses the technique known as pixilation, an animation technique using live actors as stop-motion objects. Here you can see it:

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