Pixar’s fourteenth feature film is preceded on screens by The Blue Umbrella, a short subject so wonderful that cinemas should charge separate admission. No one will blame you if you hide under your seat until the next showing.
You have not seen photorealism in animation until you’ve seen this short. This level of visual detail has never been achieved before. Pair it with a simple romance, classy music, and perfect stereoscopic 3-D, and you have a winner. Director Saschka Unseld, who hails from Pixar’s camera and staging department, should be making every visual call at the studio from now on.
If you love Red’s Dream as much as I do, The Blue Umbrella will instantly be among your favourite Pixar shorts. The Academy should love it as well, although Disney’s win for Paperman last year might unfortunately hurt it’s chances, just because the concepts are so darn similar in terms of story.