“Hana” chronicles a young student’s struggle within the school system as she attempts to complete exams in order to build a better future for her impoverished family. In “Cikgu Hana”, two students are transported into the past in order to learn about their country’s history. Through this journey, they learn about events that helped shape their current lives.
Each of the short films boasts captivating visuals, utilizing “Rotoscope”, which layers animation on top of live action footage. The result is that each short gives the characters lifelike and fluid movement. This also allows for more freedom with the background designs and both films contain a bright color palette that compliments the animation style. There is some variation between the two short films. However, each film establishes a strong visual presence that ties the two well together. Each production also contains some great transitional work, regarding color scheme, or artificially aging the characters. The film flows in a fluent manner that helps hide some of the rough edges of the individual stills.
The animation on each production was completed by young students, and acts as a great way to show a younger generation utilizing visual storytelling to better understand their history. The work that the students’ completed to create a mature project adds a degree of inspiration into the production, which elevates the entertainment the movie offers. The students who did work on the animation should carry a great sense of pride for having accomplished a unique and vibrant visual style. Each short film does contain some footage of the students’ working on the project, which also adds a sense of appreciation from the filmmaker for his students and their contributions.
The script for each production captures moments within the students life that carry a deep impact into their future. In “Hana”, this is a lesson of having to deal with poverty and the need to dedicate to education to help those in need. In “Ciku Hana” a few historic events are highlighted which reflect the effect on the student’s modern lives. Both shorts experiment with different visuals to help better convey the story. From using real images as backdrops, color pallet shifts, to artificially aging characters, each short succeeds in creating a deeper narrative to the script.
The soundtrack on both shorts were handled by Adam Dani. Dani, who scored all the work of director Wan Dinnie, crafts some memorable, minimalist scores that compliment the director’s vision. The voices that are recorded can be a bit fast paced, and difficult to read subtitled. However, it is still serviceable to the story and matches well with the visuals.
The soundtrack on both shorts were handled by Adam Dani. Dani, who scored all the work of director Wan Dinnie, crafts some memorable, minimalist scores that compliment the director’s vision. The voices that are recorded can be a bit fast paced, and difficult to read subtitles. However, it is still serviceable to the story and matches well with the visuals.