Thursday, 14 January 2016

"Mary and Max" movie review

Fig. 1 – movie poster

“Mary and Max” (2010) is a claymation directed by Adam Elliot. The film is very striking not only by the very muted colour palettes used in the scenes (apart from the occasional jolt of highly saturated red) but the serious topics it discusses. As Andrew Pulver states: “You have to admire the ambition, even if Elliot doesn't always seem certain if he's laughing with or at his creations.” (Pulver, 2010)

The eccentricity with which the film reveals itself is very memorable as well, making it stand out.  This rather gloomy style seeps through not only the colours but the overall character design as well, each and every one has their own rich personal history with which they create an incredibly engaging world. Half way through the movie the viewer is fully immersed into this odd and a bit sad realm full of depressed misfits.

The actual story is interesting if at times a bit random. Mary is randomly choosing a name from a phone book that leads her to discover Max. They become pen pals for years even though they are on the opposite sides of the world. Their daily life is full of hardship and despair but the one remaining constant in it is their unlikely friendship. Tim Robey states that: “Elliot is a talent eccentric enough to make Nick Park look like an office drone, and the serious sadness underpinning his vision only makes the humour work better.” (Robey, 2010) In many instants the animation was humorous but personally that was overtaken a little by the seriousness of the issues raised.

Overall I found “Mary and Max” entertaining, skilfully made and immersive.



Fig. 1 (movie poster) -, (2016). [online] Available at: [Accessed 14 Jan. 2016].


Pulver, A. (2010). Mary and Max – review. [online] the Guardian. Available at: [Accessed 14 Jan. 2016].

Robey, T. (2010). Mary and Max, review. [online] Available at: [Accessed 14 Jan. 2016].

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