There’s a new Pixar animators’ side project short making the rounds, Borrowed Time, and as you will see, watching the video, it has garnered high praise from everyone. Not from me. I understand the desire to impress people with the idea that animation is not solely for children or upbeat subjects, but I rather thought most people already had that one figured out. According to the blurb, Borrowed Time is about loss and mourning. What I saw was a wallow in a soul destroying guilt, which had pretty much eaten the character’s life. It also seemed to me that the old west was chosen as a scenario so that a gun could be brought into play. This short is being described as powerful, but it did not affect me that way at all. It struck me as being cheap, maudlin, and manipulative. Yes, I got the ‘lesson’ of borrowed time and all that, but depicting a person utterly ruined by guilt wasn’t a good way to do that.
The Verge has the full story on this.