The festival circuit has been the home of some wild animated offerings this year, such as The Spine of Night which debuted at SXSW, and preceded by Dash Shaw’s Cryptozoo at Sundance. The latter is a little bit like an adventure movie, a little bit Fantastic Beasts, a little bit espionage, and all of it presented in fantastical fashion. Really, it was quite unlike anything I’ve seen this year and now the trailer is here so you can delight in its strangeness, too.
Featuring the voices of Lake Bell, Michael Cera, Angeliki Papoulia, Zoe Kazan, Peter Stormare, Grace Zabriskie, Louisa Krause, and Thomas Jay Ryan, Cryptozoo follows cryptozookeeper Lauren Grey as she sets out to save a legendary dream-eating bird known as a Baku. The film deals with this myriad of wonderfully weird creatures and whether they should be kept on display, a subject we face in reality about animals meant for the wild.
In my review from earlier this year I called Cryptozoo “Fantastic Beasts for the Adult Swim audience”. If you’re looking for animation that’s off the beaten path a bit more high-minded, this is something to get into.
Cryptozoo opens on August 20th.
Visionary comic book writer/artist/filmmaker Dash Shaw’s vibrant, fantastical animated feature follows cryptozookeepers through a richly-drawn hallucinatory world as they struggle to capture a Baku (a legendary dream-eating hybrid creature) and begin to wonder if they should display these rare beasts in the confines of a zoo, or if these mythical creatures should remain hidden and unknown. Featuring the voice talents of Lake Bell, Zoe Kazan, Michael Cera, Louisa Krause, Peter Stormare, Thomas Jay Ryan, Grace Zabriskie, and Angeliki Papoulia, CRYPTOZOO is written and directed by Shaw, with Jane Samborski directing the stunning animation.