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Movie review: 'Robot Dreams' (2023)

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Movie poster, Dog and Robot walk hand in hand down a New York City street. Robot Dreams (trailer) is a 102-minute animated film released in December 2023, made by Arcadia, Lokiz and other studios. Based on a 2007 graphic novel (Amazon US - UK - Spanish edition) by Sara Varon, this Spanish-French production was written and directed by Pablo Berger, who had never worked in animation before, so he collaborated closely with art director José Luis Ágreda and storyboard artist Maca Gil for a year and a half to plan the project. It worked out really well!

Two neat things: it's a 2D film in an overbearingly 3D market, and there's no dialog. It takes place in a slightly alternative version of New York City in 1984, a funny-animal one. The main character, "Dog", lives in a Manhattan apartment. He's extremely lonely. One day he sees a TV ad for robot friends, so he orders one; after putting it together - he's not lonely anymore! Aside from this modern leap in artificial intelligence and robotics, the film is as early-80s as it gets: boomboxes, cassettes, VCRs, and Walkmen.

Symbol of a Nation slated for Anthrocon release

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Front cover of the book Symbol of a Nation, art by Jenn 'Pac' Rodriguez Symbol of a Nation, edited by Fred Patten, is launching at Anthrocon 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania over the June 29-July 3 five-day weekend.

Symbol of a Nation is an all-original anthology of 11 short stories and novelettes featuring the anthropomorphized official animal (or bird) symbols of nations. This is designed to appeal to both s-f & fantasy fans, and fans of political science.

Below are the list of countries and animals that will be included in this set:

Belgium – lion
Chile – Andean condor
Denmark – mute swan
Italy – wolf
Malaysia – tiger
Mauritius – dodo (extinct)
Namibia - oryx
Romania - lynx
Singapore - lion
Spain - bull
U.S.A. – bald eagle
Vietnam – water buffalo

Spanish furs launch new furry convention, Furrnion

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Furrnion poster, featuring Bertín and Doña Ana; art by Norcus A new event, Furrnion, has been announced as "the first Spanish furry convention".

Slated for January 2017 in Madrid, the event is being organized by a team of "more than 20" led by local furs Salmy, Troxy and S-Cheetah.

Furrnion is to be presented in English as well as Spanish, in the hope of attracting dealers and attendees internationally. Features outlined on its website include a dealers' den, art show and auction, nocturnal raves, and a fursuit lounge.

Staff are still being recruited; registration is to be opened in April, assuming all goes to plan.

The first local event - Ibercamp, a mountain camp launched in 2012 - attracted 60 furs in its second year, but was not held subsequently. August 2015 saw the introduction of another camp, Furbest, with 29 listed attendees (video).

'Psiconautas' is depressing, but it's anthropomorphic

Your rating: None Average: 4.8 (6 votes)

Here is a “stealth” anthropomorphic animated feature that has just appeared. Psiconautas (Psychonauts), directed by Alberto Vázquez and Pedro Rivero, and produced by ZircoZine in Santiago de Compostela & Basque Films in Bilbao, has just premiered at the 63rd (2015) San Sebastián Film Festival (September 18 to 26) on the 24th. No word yet on when or where it will be generally released.

Psiconautas is based upon the graphic novel by Alberto Vázquez. The synopsis is “Teenagers Birdboy and Dinky have decided to escape from an island devastated by ecological catastrophe: Birdboy by shutting himself off from the world, Dinky by setting out on a dangerous voyage in the hope that Birdboy will accompany her.” This may be an animated cartoon, but it is clearly not a “cute” film for children.

NSFW warning: The trailer does contain some violent imagery.

Doggy derring-do to get big-screen debut

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Adding to the list of upcoming anthropomorphic animal movies, a feature film version of 1980s cartoon Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds was announced at the Annecy Film Festival on June 15.


As the title suggests, Dogtanian was an adaptation of The Three Musketeers, with dogs in the roles of d'Artagnan and his friends. Your humble reporter surely cannot have been the only nascent furry to be stirred by the portrayal of Aramis, one of literature's great lovers, as a Springer Spaniel.

Television: Is 'Las Cuevas' anthropomorphic? Who knows?

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Animation Xpress volume 10, #370 for October 3, 2012, headlines “MIPCOM ‘12 Special: Las Cuevas, a 52 x 13, 2D Animated Television Series by Ink Apache”, by Zeenia Boatwala.

Reading through the gushing press release, “Spain based Ink Apache” is “all set to pitch this series at MIPCOM JUNIOR in a few days from now. Directed by Antonio Morales, Las Cuevas [English: The Caves] is a buddy comedy about two young friends, Danny and Balti and amateur detectives living in the oddest and mysterious town of the world.” Las Cuevas is an animated “buddy dark thriller comedy targeting boys and girls aged between 9 -12 yr.”

Danny is a new kid in the town of Las Cuevas and has a fresh eye of a newcomer, wanting to know more about this town whereas Balti, who is born and raised in Las Cuevas is packed with full of local knowledge and the entire series is based on Danny and Balti encountering and solving mysteries.

Yeah, but is it anthropomorphic? Apparently not, but the press release does emphasize “SPINE-TINGLING CREEPINESS” and “paranormal” so much that there may be a few ghostly or enhanced beasties in it. Check out the bizarre promo art. There is a non-anthro dog.

Furs to roam unleashed in Spain this November at Ibercamp

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Ibercamp mascotsDemand appears high for the first two-day furry event in Spain - Ibercamp, held in the mountains outside Salem, halfway between Valencia and Alicante. Food, drinks (including a few hours of open bar at the kareoke), and a bungalow spot are included in the €75 registration fee.

The event website contains a comic by RayFkm advising attendees to follow the 6-2-1 rule; although sleeping may not be hard after Sunday, which includes three hours of hiking. (Fortunately, the staff includes a person equipped in "chest-pounding" who is familiar with using the kiss of life, "even in situations where it is not particularly necessary".)

While it seems likely that most attendees will come from the Iberian Peninsula, organizer Alex Vixgeck reports registrations from regions as far afield as Basingstoke in the UK. Some wishing to attend may have to wait for 2013, though, as the 24 spaces filled up in 24 hours.