Directed by: Travis Knight
Cinematography: Frank Passingham
Runtime: 1h 41m
Genre: Animation, Adventure
Kubo and the Two Strings is the latest project from LAIKA. This visually stunning mix between CGI and stop motion creates resplendent images throughout the film. It is almost hard to believe that the picture is comprised of stop motion at all, considering how well all the elements bled together. The techniques used allowed them to create some incredible textures. The story of a young boy with the gift to shape origami with his Shamisen seems like it is an adaptation of Japanese lore, although I was unable to easily locate one. When I first saw the trailer for this movie I thought that his instrument was an Erhu, not a Shamisen, since the Erhu has 2 strings opposed to the 3 stringed Shamisen. I realized after watching it that the titular strings are actually a reference to the mementos acquired from his parents. Like most animated pictures these days there is a story aimed at children that also has a subtext for adults to follow. In this story Kubo is challenging his elders to consider paradigm changes that were initiated by his parents. Societal views are always evolving and the only way to ease the constant transition is to be compassionate and forgiving.