Sometimes it seems that the cartoons for the whole family have run out: you just have to wait for new releases or re-enact proven classics or play Play Amo games based on well-known cartoons.
Here you’ll find a selection of European cartoons overshadowed by the big hits from Pixar and DreamWorks, hand-drawn forgotten masterpieces and rare puppet animations. Add it to your bookmarks and watch with the whole family.
Robin is the daughter of a hunter. She and her father recently moved to an Irish town where the local suburbs are terrorized by wolves. Robin finds it hard to sit still and is bored with household chores. She bursts out of the city walls and dreams of helping her daddy hunt, but instead of wolves, the girl finds a new friend in the woods.
The highlight of Wolfwalkers is the drawing style. The authors don’t strive for realism, instead experimenting with the geometry and perspective of the image: for example, contrasting the square-triangular city with the patterned and undulating wilderness of the forest. But behind the pretentious visuals is a fairly simple story about friendship and nature that even young viewers will understand.
A Cat in Paris
During the daytime, Dino is an ordinary cat, but every night he goes out to “work” with his partner: together they sneak into museums and rich houses to steal jewelry illegally. In the morning, the cat returns home to his mistress, little Parisian Zoe, as if nothing had happened.
The angular, deliberately simplistic characters live and act in colorful Paris by night and day.
Despite the title, the cunning cat Dino is not the cartoon’s main character. It’s really a story of a mother and daughter whose lives include a detective, a family drama, and a mad chase through the rooftops of Paris.
The Secret of NIMH
In a field of the most ordinary farm, Mrs. Brisby, a single mother mouse with four children, lives. Times are hard: one of the cubs is seriously ill and bedridden, and the local farmer has decided to plow his land, which is sure to destroy the mouse dwelling. Other clever animals and her own courage will help the mouse overcome all adversity.
This cartoon was created in opposition. Don Bluth, author of The Secret of NIMH, left Disney in 1979 to demonstrate the quality of traditional animation methods against the backdrop of cheapening Disney production technology.
At first glance, it might seem like just another story about anthropomorphic animals that differ from ordinary people only in appearance. But that’s wrong: in The Secret of NIMH, the key motif is exactly the peculiar cleverness of animals, the nature of which is partly explained by the science-fiction part of the story. The world of the cartoon is filled with a strange fairy-tale atmosphere, where images of DNA spirals and electrical energy are mixed with magical wonders.
Orphan Tim is afraid of the dark. Every night he moves his bed closer to the window so he can fall asleep in the starlight. But a scary thing happens: the stars begin to go out one by one.
Tim wants the bright night sky back, so he goes to the place where the night is controlled.
The basis of the cartoon is the strange adventures of a toddler in the magical world of night. In this world, light bulbs are talking creatures with legs and arms, dreams are actually whispered to people, and hair is tangled by professionals.
The cartoon is a kaleidoscope of such funny wonders inside the everyday things that we usually associate with sleep and night. After watching it, you can discuss with children what else they might encounter in the night world, and turn the routine preparation for bedtime into an exciting and unusual adventure.