Notoriously unlucky in the myriad of film translations of his work, Edgar Allan Poe finds an unlikely ally with the techniques of a minimalist animation style from U.P.A. Studios, a happy meeting of the literary and the graphic arts to produce one of the finest cinematic interpretations of the author.
The U.P.A. style, which rejects the attempts at mimicking realism, championed by the Disney studio, allows for the advancement of a film to find a uniquely individual visual voice, produced with a stylized design specific to subject of the film. Employing a technique which came to be known as “limited” animation, eschewing the need for the quantity of individual painted cels necessary to recreate the fluidity of live action, the animators at U.P.A. were able to ingeniously use the mixture of vivid narration (void of the visuals, the soundtrack alone would make for satisfying radio drama) and a suggestive, rather than overt, visual transitioning, resulting in a greater abstraction of reality and therefore a more faithful translation of the narrative through the eyes (literally) of a madman: a creative approach, for once, refreshingly commensurate with the needs of the story rather than formatting the story to fit the techniques of the filmmaker.
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