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Central Park Media presents
Doggy Poo (2003)

"I am only a doggy poo. What am I good for?"
- Our hero

Review By: Jon Danziger   
Published: March 21, 2004

Director: Oh-Sung Kown

MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Run Time: 00h:34m:16s
Release Date: March 23, 2004
UPC: 719987244429
Genre: anime


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
A- BB+B B

DVD Review

Yeah, that's right, doggy poo. Let the doody jokes run wild, dOc readers, for the protagonist of this film is kin to what I'm picking up a couple of times each day in plastic bags, courtesy of the world's finest canine companion, my faithful chow-retriever mix, Clarice. But there's nothing scatological, at all, in this surprisingly charming little story, and if you can stop giggling about the fact that our hero here is a pile of dog excrement, you'll actually be entertained in some surprising ways.

This is a Korean stop-motion production, based on a children's book by a very popular Korean author, Jung-Saeng Kwon, and it's some sort of odd combination of childhood library staples The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Everyone Poops, with a bit of holistic philosophy thrown in. The story begins when a sweet little doggie deposits the title character on the side of the road, and the poo comes to life—it's like an appropriate version of Mr. Hanky, the Christmas Poo, and it's a cute little poo, with rosy cheeks and doe eyes. He starts asking the Big Questions: Why is he here? What is his purpose in life? He gets no help from his big new friend, a lump of soil; he meets a fatalistic leaf, turning brown with the autumn and in search of its own destiny; and he compares notes with an arrogant and not especially bright mother hen, who sizes up the poo as a potential meal for her brood of chicks.

You don't have a lot of tools to take on the hero's journey, if you're a poo, but there's evidence of harmony in the universe when our poo meets a dandelion sprout, in need of fertilizer. The poo and dandelion embrace one another, their destinies forever intertwined; no doubt the flower is going on to greater glory than the bit of manure, which gets enveloped in a Venus flytrap-like embrace. But it's actually a sweet tale of metamorphosis, in an odd, Joseph Campbell sort of way. The animation is pleasing and carefully done, and if you can get over the giggles that are likely to prompted by an anthropomorphized bit of caca, you'll find that this is a sweet, short, worthy little tale.

Rating for Style: A-
Rating for Substance: B

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: A sharp, clear transfer, with saturated colors and little interference.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0English, Koreanno


Audio Transfer Review: Nicely balanced stereo tracks, in either the Korean original or dubbed into English; the music can sometimes be laid on a little too heavily, though.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 6 cues and remote access
Cast and Crew Biographies
1 Original Trailer(s)
2 Other Trailer(s) featuring Graves of the Fireflies, Animated Classics of Japanese Literature
4 Featurette(s)
Storyboard
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extra Extras:
  1. soundtrack CD
Extras Review: The wisely chosen extras provide a seminar in the ways of stop-motion animation. An accompanying Korean-language documentary (24m:10s) pays tribute to the source material and walks us through the various aspects of filmmaking; the littlest fans of the film may have trouble keeping up with the subtitles, though. Similarly edifying are a set of storyboards and sketches, set to the film's soundtrack and running the length of the movie; accompanying them are another set of English-language subtitles, with notes from the director on each scene. What's billed as a pilot (04m:12s) seems more like just a very long trailer; we also get three galleries, devoted to images from production—one (01m:40s) for art, another (00m:48s) for the set, and the last (01m:12s) featuring behind-the-scenes photographs. There's also a music video (04m:12s) for the song that plays under the closing credits, with images from the film. The good folks at Central Park Media were also kind enough to send along a soundtrack CD, which makes for soothing background or nighttime music, particularly for the younger crowd.

Extras Grade: B

 

Final Comments

Don't be such a baby and get over yourself with the bathroom humor, already. This is a surprisingly charming short animated film, with a generous package of extras.

 


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