Animation: Junk Head 1

Published On November 8, 2013 | By Joe Gordon | Animation, Film TV & Theatre

Here’s a really wonderfully done slice of animation from Yamiken Hori which our own Martin pointed me towards. A post by Toshi Nakamura on explains a little about the film, which runs for some thirty minutes and, amazingly, is the work of one person who has spent four years creating this beautifully executed piece of stop-motion animation. Junk Head 1 is set in a dystopian future where centuries after a conflict between humans and clones ended with the clones exiled to the deep depths of the city an exploration pod carries a scientist down to examine this underground realm and see what has become of it and the clones exiled forcibly there. Except it doesn’t go quite as planned…

junk head 1 animation characters yamiken

The style is visually compelling; for me it is as if the Brothers Quay decided to so something inspired by anime or manga science fiction, with that fascinating mixture of the creepy and even macabre with the charming. And I do love that Yamiken has mostly used stop-motion – I love all forms of animation, but have a special place reserved in my heart for stop-motion. I think the fact that someone lovingly created the characters, sets and prop by hand, that everything you see on screen was touched by someone’s hands, adds to the magic of animation, of bringing something to life. According to the Kotaku post Yamiken has rented a theatre in Japan to screen the movie, and payment will be after, not before, the film – – like it? Pay something. Don’t like it? Leave. After this Yamiken apparently plans to put the entire film online for everyone to watch. At the moment there is only the first ten minutes and the invented language these future denizens speak is translated into Japanese subtitles, but while we wait (hopefully) for one with English subtitles I have to say I think you can follow most of it from the visuals. Lovely, unusual work and all the more remarkable for being by a single person. Hopefully we will get to see the rest of the film in due course.

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About The Author

Joe Gordon
Joe Gordon is's chief blogger, which he set up in 2005. Previously, he was professional bookseller for over 12 years as well as a lifelong reader and reviewer, especially of comics and science fiction works.

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