René Laloux's mesmerising psychedelic sci-fi animated feature won the Grand Prix at the 1973 Cannes Film Festival and is a landmark of European animation. Based on Stefan Wul's novel Oms en série [Oms by the dozen], Laloux's breathtaking vision was released in France as La Planète sauvage [The Savage Planet]; in the USA as Fantastic Planet; and immediately drew comparisons to Swift's Gulliver's Travels and Planet of the Apes (both the 1968 film and Boule's 1963 novel). Today, the film can be seen to prefigure much of the work of Hayao Miyazaki at Studio Ghibli (Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away) due to its palpable political and social concerns, cultivated imagination, and memorable animation techniques.
La Planète sauvage tells the story of "Oms", human-like creatures, kept as domesticated pets by an alien race of blue giants called "Draags". The story takes place on the Draags' planet Ygam, where we follow our narrator, an Om called Terr, from infancy to adulthood. He manages to escape enslavement from a Draag learning device used to educate the savage Oms — and begins to organise an Om revolt. The imagination invested in the surreal creatures, music and sound design, and eerie landscapes, is immense and unforgettable.
Widely regarded as an allegorical statement on the Soviet occupation of Czechoslovakia, Fantastic Planet was five years in the making at Prague's Jiri Trnka Studios. The direction of René Laloux, the incredible art of Roland Topor, and Alain Goraguer's brilliant complementary score (much sampled by the hip-hop community) all combine to make La Planète sauvage a mind-searing experience.
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The history of animated cinema holds some gems that unless you look, you'll never find. Fantastic Planet is one these gems. If you look into more obscure animated features, this one tends to make itself known on most lists. I'm so happy I found out about the film as it now stands as one of my favorite animated films of all time. The animation is in a style all of it's own and is accompanied by a truly FANTASTIC and other worldly score. Not many sci-fi films are able to truly transport you to another world, but Fantastic Planet manages to set a mood with it's style that takes the viewer to a dark and unknown place. I'm not going to dribble on about plot or the ideas the film has, I just wanted to stress the love I now have for this film. Excellent transfer to Blu-ray, looks stunning. Sound was epic in a off-beat way. See this film if you love animation or if you just want to experience something brilliant and different from the world of cinema.
La Planete Sauvage is a culmination of beautiful visuals, wonderful animation and a narrative that doesn't suffer a lack of content. It is a true feat in animated film making. It is worth every penny to anyone who appreciates excellent animation and good storytelling. Masters of Cinema, Blu-ray and DVD Combo release is my favourite purchase in a long time. It also comes with a 56-page colour booklet and enough extras to please a curious mind. It comes up brilliantly on Blu-ray but that's not to say it doesn't look amazing on DVD too.
While most anime or manga suffers from the test of the time La Planete Sauvage does not. While the world has experienced the latest financial crisis hat started in 2007/8 and is far from over, the answers why it is instantly come to mind while watching this movie. The upper class (Draags) tormenting all the other species on the fantastic planet....and you can judge for yourself if the planet is fantastic.