Made by the great Irish studio Cartoon Saloon (SONG OF THE SEA, WOLFWALKERS), Netflix’s new animated film adaptation MY FATHER’S DRAGON, keeps that top-level plot summary, some of the characters, and the indelible design of Boris the dragon (as illustrated by the author’s stepmother, Ruth Chrisman Gannett). Boris is plump and puppyish, striped in blue and yellow, with floppy ears and little golden wings. Director Nora Twomey (The Breadwinner, The Secret of Kells) weaves a surreal little parable into something that’s more like a conventionally structured kids’ movie, but they’ve also made it more exciting and resonant. It’s a lovely film.

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Embrace the Beauty of Cartoon Saloon

Start the new year with a beautiful box set from a group of creative souls who are keeping traditions alive. It’s not just that the geniuses of Cartoon Saloon embrace the increasingly lost art of hand-drawn animation, but that they draw on classic storytelling concepts, using mythology to fuel their original stories. They have only released four films, but each of them is a captivating work of art on their own while also achieving a remarkable cumulative power when appreciated as a whole piece – a sequence of studies in how our history and our mythology connects to universal themes of today.

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