Some movie lovers avoid mainstream fare like the plague, preferring instead to look for gems in independent and foreign cinema. It's as unfair and incorrect to say that subtitles make a film "better" as it is to suggest star power and brand-name backing make another film "worse". On the other hand, French director Rémi Chayé's (literally) breathtaking adventure, Long Way North, makes me question what was so great about Finding Dory and Moana. In 80 minutes, this simply rendered, dazzlingly shot 19th century Arctic trek covers more emotional ground than both those Disney flicks, and packs a greater narrative wallop than the lovingly crafted but dull and convoluted Kubo and the Two Strings. Though Chaye's Flash-animated characters look like a cross between cut paper and marker drawings, they feel more tangible than any million-dollar 3-D fish. I'm not a film snob, but I'm beginning to understand where they're coming from.
Want to learn about the long, hard journey of making Long Way North? Listen to Kicking the Seat Podcast #176 for an interview with director Rémi Chayé!