Director: Zhou Keqin & Ah Da
Release Date: 1981
When they finally succeed to catch its reflection in a bowl, they drop it, only to discover that the moon still is in the sky.
‘The Monkeys who tried to catch the moon’ is, like many other Chinese films, based on an ancient fable. And, like many others it uses silent acting to tell its story. Nevertheless, the film is also a little atypical. Its elegant designs are not inspired by ancient painting, but more akin to Lotte Reiniger’s films. Moreover, the movements are not really naturalistic and the film doesn’t use Chinese music. Instead we have a lush and colorful forest world accompanied by rich film music. The cut-out models of the monkeys are soft and subtle in design, and there’s a striking use of light.
The result is one of the most beautiful Chinese animation films ever made.
Watch ‘Monkeys Fish the Moon’ yourself and tell me what you think:
* this film is also known by its French title: ‘les singes qui veulent attraper la lune’