Logorama

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Logorama
Logorama poster.jpg
Original poster
Directed by François Alaux
Hervé de Crécy
Ludovic Houplain
Produced by Autour de Minuit
Written by François Alaux
Hervé de Crécy
Ludovic Houplain
Gregory J. Pruss
Music by Bryan Ray Turcotte
Dayna Turcotte
Editing by Samuel Danési
Studio H5
Autour de Minuit Productions
Little Minx Films
Distributed by Cinéma Public Films
Release dates
  • May 20, 2009 (2009-05-20) (Cannes)
Running time 16 minutes
Country France
Language English

Logorama is a 16-minute French animated film written and directed by H5/François Alaux, Hervé de Crécy and Ludovic Houplain, and produced by Autour de Minuit. The film depicts events in a stylized Los Angeles, and is told entirely through the use of more than 2,500 contemporary and historical logos and mascots. The film won the Prix Kodak at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival and the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at the 82nd Academy Awards.[1]

Plot[edit]

The opening shot is a panorama of Los Angeles, revealing a city where all of the buildings and inhabitants are some form of commercial branding: birds in the form of Bentley logos, Microsoft's butterfly, pedestrians in the shape of the AIM icon, overhead highway signs mounted on Atlantic Records logos, etc. The major characters are revealed in an Altman-esque tableau. The Pringles mascot (voiced by David Fincher) pulls into a restaurant's parking lot and propositions an Esso Girl waitress (voiced by Aja Evans) who is on a smoking break. Two Michelin Man cops in a parked cruiser (voiced by Bob Stephenson and Sherman Augustus) are introduced as they debate the morality of keeping animals in zoos. Across town, Bob's Big Boy (voiced by Joel Michaely) and Haribo (voiced by Matt Winston) are on a tour at the zoo led by a flamboyantly gay Mr. Clean (also voiced by Michaely). The two boys hate the tour and hop off the tour train. They soon begin to harass the MGM lion by mooning it and throwing a Coca Cola bottle at it. The Green Giant comes over to them and tells the boys to stop treating their animal friends badly and how they would like it if he pulled his pants down and moon them.

As the cops order lunch, a call comes in over the radio about a criminal on the loose in a red delivery truck. Both cops spy Ronald McDonald (voiced by Stephenson) in the truck and give chase. The pursuit quickly veers out of control, as innocent bystanders are imperiled. The kids at the zoo have finished their visit and are back on the school bus. Their bus gets caught up in the chase when Ronald McDonald's truck tips over right in front of the Pizza Hut where Esso Girl is waiting on the Original Pringles mascot and the Pringles Hot & Spicy mascot as they have lunch together.

Several guns and biological weapons spill out of the back of Ronald McDonald's truck, tempting Big Boy and Haribo to steal them for sale on the black market. Ronald McDonald knocks out Haribo with his foot and takes Big Boy hostage and runs inside the Pizza Hut. Once inside, Big Boy bites Ronald McDonald and runs for cover behind the counter with Esso Girl. Enraged, Ronald McDonald opens fire, giving the police the excuse to start firing on him, and he kills one of the police officers.

As the gun battle explodes in to the streets, a low rumbling can be heard across the entire city. A giant earthquake of the Xbox symbol splits the streets of the city open, meanwhile Big Boy and Esso Girl escape out the back and steal a cop car. While running from the police on a stolen motorcycle, Ronald McDonald falls into one of the crevasses (shaped like a Zenith logo). As he tries to pull himself out, he is run over by Esso Girl and Big Boy's car. The duo barely escape the city. As they near the Hollywood sign, it falls apart, sending the giant letters crashing on to the highway in front of them. While evading one of them, they veer off the highway (a series of curves shaped like the VAIO logo) and down a hill. Their car crashes into a tree (American Century logo), and oil erupts in the rifts around town, flooding Los Angeles with crude oil. The hill Esso Girl and Big Boy are on splits in two, revealing a giant North Face logo. Eventually, the land crumbles around them, swallowed by the sea, leaving them on a tiny island together (with the Esso girl picks up a coloured Apple and has a bite) as the film closes by zooming out to reveal that the entire Universe is made up of even more logos. After the credits, a bald, black eyed, and partly toothless Ronald McDonald, menacingly laughs and says "I'm lovin' it."

Brand images[edit]

The entirety of Logorama is made up of brand images and logos, with these brand images and logos used to represent characters, props, locations, vehicles, and other content. Notable uses within the film include the McDonald's mascot Ronald McDonald used to depict the villain, and two Michelin Men used to depict the protagonist cops. Some of the logos are derived from fictional works, however, including that of Slurm from Futurama.

Themes[edit]

Logorama explores the extent to which logos are embedded in our daily existence. H5 members said, "Logorama presents us with an over-marketed world built only from logos and real trademarks that are destroyed by a series of natural disasters (including an earthquake and a tidal wave of oil). Logotypes are used to describe an alarming universe (similar to the one that we are living in) with all the graphic signs that accompany us everyday [sic] in our lives. This over-organized universe is violently transformed by the cataclysm becoming fantastic and absurd. It shows the victory of the creative against the rational, where nature and human fantasy triumph."[2]

Awards[edit]

Logorama has received the following nominations and awards:

  • Kodak Discovery Award for Best Short Film (the Kodak Prix)- Critics' Week, Cannes Film Festival 2009 - Won
  • Audience Award - Festival International de Curtas Metragans 2009
  • Audience Award - Lille International Short Film Festival 2009
  • Jury's Special Prize, Audience Prize, Fuji Prize for Best Directors - Cinanima International Animated Film Festival 2009
  • Best Short Film - Stockholm International Film Festival 2009
  • Best Direction, Audience Award - Vendôme Film Festival 2009
  • Gold Medal for Animation - Zinebi, Bilbao International Film Festival 2009
  • Oscar for Best Animated Short - 82nd Academy Awards 2010 - Won
  • Best Short Film - Césars 2011

Influences[edit]

The 2012 Simpsons episode "A Tree Grows in Springfield" ends with a vignette inspired by Logorama.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. "Nominees for the 82nd Academy Awards". Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. Retrieved February 8, 2010. 
  2. ^ Design Boom. "H5: Logorama". Design Boom. Retrieved February 8, 2010. 

External links[edit]