The Swanpride Award: Time for a Recap

Well, we have rushed through decades and have now reached the 1980s. Here is what I learned so far.

  1. This is really difficult. I thought that at least in the beginning the winners would be fairly obvious. To be fair, they would be if I had gone by year, and not by decade. But still, I somehow expected that there would be at least one obvious winner each decade. But so far that has only been true for Fantasia.
  2. I really like the movies which try something different, as well as those which have visually a lot to offer.
  3. Animation was really in the process to kick off big, not just in America. But the war really derailed the process, which resulted mostly in some propaganda productions and then mostly nothing at all. Perhaps also because a lot talents ended up either in the US or behind the Iron curtain. It is a shame.
  4. The 1950s were thoroughly Disney dominated. It is also, artistically speaking, Disney’s strongest era so far. Which wasn’t exactly news to me, but looking at the movies put the point across yet again.
  5. The 1960s were a horrible decade for animation. I am still in shock. No wonder Disney made so much money with rereleasing the old movies to theatres again and again. But it is also the decade in which the list of animated movies released every year started to get long. The quality was just not quite there yet.
  6. The 1970s is the period which finally makes it worth again to look at obscure movies. There is a good chance to find a fairly unknown gem if you take the time to look through the various titles.
  7. It is really worth it to shift through the non-American production. To elaborate, the American movies usually find an audience if they are good, so they land on the best lists sooner or later. But the foreign movies are often only known in their own countries and are therefore automatically less mainstream. And if they get translated, the quality of the dubbing vary.
  8. Surprisingly, the 1980s is the decade I need to catch up on the most. There are still a number of movies on my consideration list I need to watch, just to be sure that I don’t overlook a gem.
  9. Real live can be very inconvenient.
  10. But plans can get adjusted.

To get to the point, my original plan was to cover the early 1980s next. The 1980s is the time during which what I once called the “Multi-Age” starts, meaning that there are suddenly enough high quality movies from various companies that you could put together a proper list of nominees is some years. But not in all of them. I therefore planned to take 1985 as the starting point and then go forward in two year steps. But there are still a number of movies from the 1980s I need to watch (or watch again) in order to write properly about it. And I simply don’t have the time to do so currently. I thought I would be able to do all of it, but first the list ended up longer than I expected and then real life got in the way.

So I’ll do the following. For now I jump forward to the 1990s, because I am further along with those articles. I’ll try to keep up the daily schedule, but I might miss out a day or two. And when I have covered the 1990s, I’ll hopefully have managed to catch up enough to discuss the 1980s.

Sorry that I can’t do this in the way I originally planned, but I promise, I’ll cover the whole century this month.



3 responses to “The Swanpride Award: Time for a Recap

  • anii654

    It is alright. Take as much time as you need to watch the 80s films. Animation definitely took a downward turn (even in television) during the 60s, and the early 70s. It seemed like during the late 70s, amny studios started making more money, and began to produce more.

    It is unfortunate how much the war stalled almost every single aspect of the world. Those propoganda films are horrific.

    Continue the good work.

    • swanpride

      I think it was partly that the market grew and partly that new technology made animation less expensive.
      There are actually a few propaganda movies which were not THAT bad, but it was easier to leave them out, especially since Disney delivered the best movies either way.

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