Tuesday, October 9, 2012

When Pixar Makes A Horror Movie, The World Will Be A Better Place

I want to see Pixar make a horror movie, but it will be a long time before that ever happens. Here in America, we assume any animated film is for children. This horrible belief not only blocks me from my Pixar horror movie, it also marginalizes anime.

I hate this so much I want to destroy it. It is an insult to artists everywhere: "Your drawings have no power to terrify. Your drawings have no power to touch hearts or provoke thoughts. Your drawings can only amuse children."

I believe there is a link between this horrible cultural norm and another, equally horrible American cultural norm: anti-intellectualism.

Compare two images of a Baltimore oriole:





One of these images presents a literal recording of an oriole; another presents an idea of an oriole.

One of these images could appear in a serious American film intended for adults. One of them could not.

Our cultural norm, that animated films are for children, sends a message: "A literal recording can be a serious thing, but an idea can only ever be trivial and harmless."

This is, ironically, a very harmful idea.