Robot Carnival - Cloud
"Robot Carnival" is a collection of shorts, first released in 1987. The anthology consists of seven individual shorts and one opening and ending animation. None of the shorts had anything to do with any of the other shorts. Its tagline, “Nine animators, one vision”, could be replaced with: “Nine animators, eight visions.”
Under the alias: Mao Lamdo, “Cloud” was directed by Manabu Ohashi, (Character Designer and Animation Director on “Grimm’s Fairy Tales: The Golden Bird”; Animation Director on
“Bobby’s in Deep”; Opening and Ending animation, “Treasure Island”). It follows the birth and subsequent, sometimes stormy, journey of a small boy robot as he walks, mostly head down, through the triumphs, follies, and terrors of man’s history (as well as other possible events and occurrences) pictured as ephemeral cloud formations. The short is done in a style similar to a child’s picture book, and ends with the robot being reborn as a human child.
Wistful, slow moving, and plaintive, the continuous and repetitive march of the small robot, along with the eye pleasing, pale, neutral colors of the art, frame its “dispassionate” vision in a hypnotic and almost dreamlike way.