If you’re a fan of the art of animation, and you live in Los Angeles, California, we know exactly what you’re doing Sunday, October 27, 2019. You’re seeing a free exhibition and marathon screening of every LAIKA movie back-to-back, from 2009’s Coraline to 2019’s Missing Link. It’s going down at The Landmark, and it’s the perfect way to absorb the unique studio’s particular blend of stop-motion artistry, humor, darkness, and joy.
In an age of CGI dominating the animated film landscape, LAIKA cuts through the noise, giving each of their films a refreshingly handmade, stop-motion aesthetic unlike anything else in contemporary theatres. Their films are also made for adults as much as children, unafraid to traffic in emotionally complicated issues with startling clarity. The subject matters and genres covered by LAIKA are special to animation, too. Some of the movies dive headfirst into horror (Coraline, ParaNorman), some engage with mythologies of different cultures (The Boxtrolls, Kubo and the Two Strings), and some — well, one — is about a dang sasquatch (Missing Link). All are worthy of your time, and best of all, all are free during this special October 27 screening. Register for your tickets now, and make sure to get there early — there are special dioramas and puppets in the lobby for animation fans of all ages to peruse.
The official schedule, special guests, and synopsis for each film screening is below. For more on LAIKA goodness, check out our Missing Link blu-ray review.
10:30 am: Kubo and the Two Strings (Introduction by and Post Screening Q&A with LAIKA President & CEO Travis Knight, director of Kubo and Bumblebee.) Charlize Theron, Matthew McConaughey, Art Parkinson and George Takei lead an international voice cast in this story of a young boy named Kubo who must locate a magical suit of armor worn by his late father in order to defeat a vengeful spirit from the past. Won the BAFTA® Award and was nominated for the Golden Globe and two Oscars®: Animated Film and VFX, the first time in 25 years that an animated film had broken through in the VFX category. LAIKA was awarded a Scientific and Technology Oscar® for its innovation in Rapid Prototyping after the release of Kubo and the Two Strings.
1:15 pm: Missing Link (Q&A To Follow with Chris Butler, writer/director of Missing Link and ParaNorman). Mr. Link (aka “Bigfoot) recruits explorer Sir Lionel Frost to help find his long-lost relatives in the fabled valley of Shangri-La. Along with adventurer Adelina Fortnight, this trio of explorers travels the world to help their new friend. Hugh Jackman, Zoe Saldana and Zach Galifianakis head an international voice cast.
4:00 pm: ParaNorman: A misunderstood boy takes on ghosts, zombies and grown-ups to save his town from a centuries-old curse. Kodi Smit-McPhee, Anna Kendrick, Casey Affleck and Leslie Mann lead the voice cast. Nominated for the Oscar® and BAFTA® as well as a GLAAD Media Award.
6:15 pm: Coraline: An adventurous 11-year-old girl finds another world that is a strangely idealized version of her frustrating home, but it has sinister secrets. Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher and Ian McShane lead the voice cast. AFI’s Movie of the Year, Coraline was nominated for the Oscar®, the Golden Globe, the BAFTA® and won “Best Feature” at the BAFTA Children’s Awards.
8:45 pm: The Boxtrolls: A young orphaned boy raised by underground cave-dwelling trash collectors tries to save his friends from an evil exterminator. Elle Fanning, Ben Kingsley, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost lead the cast. Nominated for an Academy Award®, the BAFTA® and Golden Globe.