© MFA/24 Bilder

Konferenz der Tiere (Animals United)
Germany 2010

Opening 7 Oct 2010

Directed by: Reinhard Klooss
Writing credits: Oliver Huzly, Reinhard Klooss, Erich Kästner, Klaus Richter, Sven Severin
Principal actors: Ralf Schmitz, Thomas Fritsch, Christoph Maria Herbst, Bastian Pastewka, Oliver Kalkofe

I guess 3-D is the new craze in 2010, and here is your opportunity to experience animals with gas up close and personal! The three eight-year-old boys I took along to the screening were very, very impressed with this. The first 3-D animated film produced in Germany also has a great message. The bad and greedy humans are taking the water away from the animals, so the animals from all over the world get together and have their own conference and try to solve the problem, which is a big dam. Even though this is a very current theme, the story is taken from a fable written by Erich Kästner in 1949! Apparently this was required reading for most German kids. Kästner wrote Konferenz der Tiere in the aftermath of WWII, pleading for a world that can live in freedom and with humor. Sounds great, I have to put this on my kids list!

The plot in this film has been updated to fit the new millennium audience, and the message is still a wonderful one. I like children’s films when they disguise a positive message under cute ground hogs and silly buffaloes that fight with rhinoceroses. It is a worthwhile film to go with the family. And, the music is superb – Beach Boys, Hokey-Pokey, King of the Road. We were all entertained. I asked the three boys I was with to give me some comments (and they all rated it 5 stars!):

Leon: I liked the rhinos and buffalo fight because it looked very cool with my 3D glasses on, the buffalo snot came right out in front of my eyes.

Toby: Best was when the ground hog threw a rock on the dam and broke the wall and all the animals could have drink water again. (Can I get an “ahhh”?!)

Timmy: I liked it because it was too funny! The rhino and buffalo dance was too funny. (Vicki Filer Mensing)

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