Why waste time and money on Miyazaki's animated wallpaper or Disney's sitcom ice princess when this holiday season's foremost anthropomorphic amusement stars our disgraced former mayor, Bob Filner, and could be coming soon to a courtroom near you?
The opening long take is a textbook example of the filmmaker’s bold command of color and point-of-view. In a frame dominated by green, our orange-tinged victim, her face obscured, cries out to the lovelorn mayor like the dying rays of the sun.
Dan Gilleon, attorney of one of Filner's betrayers, commissioned a video reenactment of his client being placed in the controversial, but nonetheless AWA sanctioned 'Filner headlock.'
On its artistic and technical merits — and in case an ad agency looking for a critical blurb to slap on the theatrical one sheet happens across this post — I'm awarding the film five stars and calling The Filner Headlock the best animated picture of 2013. From it's detailed establishing shot straight through to the breathtaking (and suspense-sustaining) overhead cutaway and use of actors as cattle, it's as good a tribute to Hitchcock as any we've seen since the Master left us.
Costume design is a drawback as Filner's cross between Vatican Good Humor Man and doomsday oracle Marshall Applewhite fails to spark any meaningful inner-dialog.
This tragic incident could turn out to be a blessing in disguise for the disgraced, fanny-patting burgomaster. Turns out Filner can act! Close your eyes and listen to the troubled, halting inflection in his voice as Filner asks his prey her name. You'd swear it was Monty Clift. What's to stop Filner from pursuing a career as a cartoon voice artist?
Coming soon: "Bob Filner meets Davy & Goliath."
SPOILER ALERT: The third act reveal that Filner is a vampire came as a shock. Not unlike Spencer Tracy in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Filner insisted on doing the scene without the aid of makeup or special effects. The result is as jarring as it is chilling.
Animation reenacts "Filner headlock"
Gilleon said the video reenactment of his client's side of the story will help to prove prove her case. Something other than the stiff animated reenactment is beginning to smell like rank bass. Since when do cartoon carbons pertain to or constitute evidence? Were that the case, Elmer Fudd would have slapped Bugs Bunny with a sexual harassment lawsuit halfway through Clampett's The Big Snooze.