Available to watch on Plex (Free)
Cerebus the Aardvark is very grey and furry–often very grumpy–and that won’t stop him from dealing with Necross the Mad and Elron. Although some viewers of this indie work may see this film as a work in progress, it’s actually considered complete–warts and all. The animation quality is reminiscent of those late 90s video games.
The marionette style quality in The Absurd, Surreal, Metaphysical and Fractured Destiny of Cerebus the Aardvark works to highlight the bizarro Conan the Barbarian-like world that writer/artist Dave Sims made. Oliver Simonsen is the director behind this film, and he got the creator’s approval to move forward. It took more than a decade to realise, and the result is something comic book aficionados can appreciate more than PIXAR fans. It’s for that reason I won’t give this product a numerical score.
The vocal performances are terrific even though the animation doesn’t reflect that. I suspect that’s because a lot of the work was done with home computer systems than the tech the big studios have. When considering how long it took for this movie to get made, the team stuck with what they started with instead of upgrading and re-rendering everything. My favourite is when the aardvark gets offered the job of “kitchen staff supervisor” by Lord Julius. He’s actually captain of the guard and a Groucho Marx impersonator.
When this film was made on a budget and is more of a labour of love than anything else, the problems shouldn’t be nitpicked at. The landmark comic is well respected by long-time collectors and readers of this medium; it tackled many issues that Sims was an advocate for. Those philosophies filtered into this work.
This movie is no different and is well worth looking into just to get a sense that not every comic book movie has to be Marvel.