Mar 14, 2019
Assthete (All reviews)
When adapting a simple tale, all you can fuck up with is, well, the adaptation. The reason why Snow White is so acclaimed and memorable isn't because of its ingenious storytelling, but rather its audiovisual timelessness. By displaying so much prowess, it stood the test of time quite effortlessly. The same cannot be said about Wan Brothers' attempt to make animation on pair with Disney's high quality standards.

Tie Shan Gongzhu is fluid with passable backgrounds... and as far as presentation goes that is pretty much it. On the negative side however, everything is kinda messed up. The positioning of cels is inconsistent throughout, the lighting is so poorly done it's sometimes impossible to distinguish elements on screen, characters go off-model when they shouldn't, vectors are all over the place making it a lot harder to discern directions, weirdly unseemly angles, numerous glitches, and depth during some scenes is pretty much nonexistent. All that combined is disorienting enough already, but honestly, nothing comes close to how annoyingly loud and erratic the sound recording is. It can deafen you, so beware.

I really appreciate the ethos at play here and that various artists struggled through war to realize their artistic vision, but it's undeniably dated, to a degree it is almost an impossible watch. They wanted to make the first full-length Chinese animated movie, and they did just that, in a case I can only call sacrificing quality for historical achievement. With that said, I don't recommend watching it unless you're interested in what it represents rather than what it has to offer.