Blinky & Me (2012)
Yoram Gross as seen in BLINKY & ME, a film by Tomasz Magierski. Picture courtesy Kalejdoskop Film. All rights reserved.
- Paul Savior
- Kalejdoskop Film
- Smoking Mirror Productions
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Opened: 09/07/2012 Limited
|Playhouse 7||09/07/2012 - 09/13/2012||7 days|
|Quad Cinema/NYC||09/21/2012 - 09/27/2012||7 days|
Genre: Biographical Documentary (English and Polish w/English subtitles)
The Triumph of Art and Family Over War
Trailer available on film website.
Read The Village Voice review.
BLINKY AND ME is the untold life-story of Australia's national treasure, the legendary animator, Yoram Gross, who has delighted generations of children world-wide with his books, films, and beloved animated characters, Blinky Bill, Dot and Kangaroo and Skippy.
When filmmaker Tomasz Magierski (MAGIC BROTHERS; MY FATHER THE LUO; PIANIST: DEFINING CHOPIN) read in the Polish press that the internationally known animator was returning to his native Poland with his family, including his grandchildren, Magierski felt it was a once in a lifetime opportunity to follow the lead that Gross offered when he said, "If you watch my films carefully you will see the history of my life."
Magierski, a native Pole who lives in New York, accompanied the Gross family on their trip to Poland. Through Gross's eyes and the eyes of his teenage grandchildren we discover how Gross survived the Nazi occupation as a Jewish child. We are privy to the intimate stories he tells his grandchildren and we see the beautiful places from where his family was uprooted--where he hid and made his narrow escapes, where his distinguished father was murdered, how he searched for his mother in occupied Poland (as Blinky Bill does after his habitat is destroyed). Throughout the film he recounts the Nazi and Polish cruelties and the bravery of other Jews and Polish Catholics who helped him survive. This journey goes further than anyone expected when his grandchildren discover that the cartoon character, Blinky Bill, is really the alter ego of their grandfather.
Magierski doesn't stop at this heartbreaking return to Poland and takes us to Israel where Gross began creating animated art films, and finally to Australia, where he found his fortune and his happiness as a father and grandfather and as the head of Australia's most successful Animation studio, where, for over three decades, he created 13 shorts, 18 animated feature films, and eight animated Television series, including the popular Blinky Bill.
In 2011, BLINKY & ME premiered in Poland, the country Gross was forced to flee over 50 years ago. Magierski's film captures Gross's love of life and his unstoppable creative spirit which lead Executive Director of The Jewish Heritage Project Alan Adelson to comment,"It's rare that we get a chance to see a film that takes us through those horribly destructive years and leaves us feeling good. (This) is a particularly life-affirming work, and will bring pleasure to all who are fortunate enough to see it."
Gross was awarded the Order of Australia in 1995 for his contribution to the Australian film industry and was recently presented with the Murray Forrest Award for Achievement in Film Craft at the Australian International Movie Convention.
-- Synopsis courtesy NY's QUAD Cinema