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An animation that uniquely blends the mundane and the fantastical.


Una Di Gallo’s ‘Northened’ is a masterstroke of short animation where nostalgia and dystopia intertwine to paint a vivid portrait of Hamilton, Ontario. Set in the industrial port city, the film follows two friends, Sam and Franklin, through their uninspired daily lives. As they hop from fast food joints to desolate beaches, the imposing industrial infrastructure looms over them like an omnipresent character, dominating their every move. This backdrop, far from being child-friendly or appealing, sets the stage for an unexpected phenomenon.

The absence of dialogue is a bold choice that pays off, allowing the film’s observational quality to shine. Viewers are invited to sit back and digest the mundane rhythm of Sam and Franklin’s existence until a slush puppy cup suddenly transforms into a bird and takes flight. This surreal twist jolts both the characters and the audience, steering the narrative into a new, thrilling direction.

Gallo’s 2D animation style is raw and authentic, capturing the gritty essence of Hamilton while maintaining an appealing, almost hypnotic quality. The illustrations are top-notch, each frame meticulously crafted to convey a sense of place and mood. The production quality is equally impressive, a credit to the dedicated team behind Gallo.

‘Northened’ doesn’t scream for attention; instead, it subtly draws you in, allowing the bizarre and the mundane to coexist seamlessly. Gallo’s film is a captivating piece of animation that deserves high praise for its offbeat yet compelling approach. This film immerses you in its world, allowing you to absorb its nuances before surprising you with the unexpected. Highly recommended.



Runtime: 8 min

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