The world of YouTube is rich in content, that can manage to satisfy the needs of anyone who is able to find entertainment in video form. You can find anything, from cat videos, to professionally made ones, put out by youtubers who have managed to build solid fanbases. Either way, it’s a creator haven, despite all the disputes and controversies surrounding the prospect of YouTube Red and the general bashing VEVO’s introduction received. And, chances are, if you want a platform to make your work known on, YouTube is the place you can go to. You don’t have to be a gamer, a vlogger or a beauty guru to be considered a creator. There is also a wide variety of cartoons, some of which are insanely popular. However, not all of them are at a “asdfghjkl movie” level (nothing against Tomska, his cartoon sketches were part of my childhood), since some are produced with Disney and Pixar level CGI and effort. But, hey, maybe you don’t have time for a full length Disney motion picture, right? Then let us recommend you 5 Must Watch Short Animations, that are both charming and less invasive of your leisure time.
1. Once Upon A Starfish
This animation begins with a little girl who’s just celebrated her birthday and who, upon looking at the sky, sights a shooting star that seemingly crashes into the ocean. Following the alleged place where the astronomical object fell, she discovers a starfish lying by the shore. Believing it to be the fallen star, the girl decides that she must return it to the sky where it belongs. She tosses in the air, ties it to a handful of helium balloons, only for her to see another starfish who manages to go back into the ocean. This is when she realizes that her companion’s place is actually among the waves, and she helps it go home.
The story here introduces us to a young griffon, who lives in a world composed of small, levitating islands. On his way to plant some seeds, he trips over and accidentally spills the bag he was carrying, scattering all the seeds in the cracks of the brick structures. All of the seeds, except for one. He keeps that one, decides to plant it in a pot and place it in the middle of the island and goes to get some water for it. Things start to go wrong, as he realizes the bucket meant to carry it is cracked, thus spilling all of the water before he can bring it back to his pot. The second go he has at it, his rush ends up causing the fountain to break, along with the bucket, before he can carry a single water droplet to the planted seed. Just as it seemed like all was lost, the disheartened griffon then realizes that all the water that had spilled from the destructed fountain has flown between the cracks where all the fallen seeds where. This inspirational and cute animation ends with the beautiful imagery of tall trees ascending above the ground.
3. Day Of The Dead
Although it may look as if it took a page from the Tim Burton book of animations, this short cartoon was produced in 2013 by a group of students. It opens with a little girl mourning by the grave of her mother, when all of sudden a blue flower blooms atop of the gravestone. Its appearance takes the girl to a darkened, unknown place, with the only source of light being the spotlight she now stands on. Then, skeletons start appearing. Fortunately, one of them is the same person the girl was mourning. As an attempt to try and show her that the afterlife is a big, joyous party and that she shouldn’t feel sad for those who go there, the skeleton takes her on a tour around the realm of the dead, now filled with songs and dances. The animation ends on a positive note, with the girl holding the blue flower and having cheered up.
4. Lily And The Snowman
Although the story is obviously the core of the cartoons on this list, having a Pixar or Dreamworks level animation is definitely a bonus point. But since we were talking about stories, this one takes place during one particular winter, when a snowman comes to life in the light of a little girl’s window. Using its flexible stick arms, it brings to life a shadow spectacle on her wall, which she gleefully watches until the snowman starts to melt. Wanting to preserve it, she decides to store it in an abandoned garage’s freezer, afterwards visiting it frequently for more shadow puppet shows. The plot twist in here is a common trope: adulthood. As she grows up, and her mind gets burdened by other matters, she eventually forgets about the snowman and stops visiting it. That is until one day, when a shadow reflected through a snow globe suddenly reminds her of her old friend. She goes to her old house and fortunately manages to find the snowman in the freezer. Along with her daughter, she participates in the spectacle of lights and shadows one more time.
5. On The Same Page
The premise of this short animation is as simple as it is creative. In a world where the sections of a newspaper are physically manifested as buildings and parts of the city, we have stoic, nerdy journalist working in the news section, and a woman from the comic section who is trying to put a smile on his face. While trying to talk to her, he opens his window, with his report on how there are no news for the day, being carried away by the wind. Although initially wanting to go after it, he eventually loosens up and realizes that he was so tense, he never took the time to wholly admire the beauty of the city.
Cartoons are crafted to appease to children primarily, true. However, creativity and innocence should be ageless, something that these animations blend together really well. Moreover, their short run time make them ideal for anyone who doesn’t have the hours or patience to sit in front of a full length motion picture. So, let’s take a break from our stressed lives, and take a peek into these 5 Must Watch Short Animations.