Mary & Max
Eight year old Mary is living with her drunken mother and ostrich-like father in a suburb outside of Melbourne. She seems constantly fascinated, but lonely, and decides to send a letter to someone. The randomly chosen recipient turns out to be M.J. Horowitz, a 44 year old obese New Yorker suffering from Asperger's syndrome and hypochondria. He has a hard time with everything and everyone, but loves chocolate hot dogs. This modern claymationgospel about hope and enjoying the small marvels of life is funny and darkly humorous. Go see it.
After finishing school, Adam Elliot (born 1972) hand-painted t-shirts for a city market store in Australia. Elliot then decided to study animation at the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne. His three first animated shorts, the so-called familiy triology, all won the award for best animated short film from the Australian Film Institute. In 2003 he released the 22-minute HARVEY KRUMPET, which won the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film the same year. MARY AND MAX, screened at this year's BIFF, is his debut feature film and the first animation film to open the Sundance Film Festival ever.