A Horrible Reality: The Boy Who Wanted to Be A Lion

A Horrible Reality: The Boy Who Wanted to Be A Lion

And Max, the king of all wild things, was lonely and wanted to be where someone loved him best of all.”

The Boy Who Wanted to Be A Lion is a beautiful, but melancholy animated short film directed by Alois Di Leo, which was his 2010 graduation animation film at the National Film and Television School in England. The film was very well-received at a number of film festivals, including: the 2010 London Film Festival, the 2010 Annecy Animation Festival (France) and the 2010 Cannes Critique Week Festival (France).

Max is a seven-year-old deaf boy, whose failure to connect with his parents or any students around him, causes him to escape passionately into a world of fantasy. One day he goes on a school trip to the zoo, where he sees a lion for the first time. A feeling begins to grow inside him that will change his life forever. Excited by Max’s unusual eagerness to engage after the trip to the zoo, his mother sews a lion’s outfit for him. However, once Max puts it on, he refuses to change back.

The film can be viewed as an ode to Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are, but instead of the rejuvenation through fantasy that Sendak’s Max experiences, our young Max confronts the horrible reality suggested in a famous Sendak line: “But the wild things cried, “Oh please don’t go- We’ll eat you up- we love you so!

A Horrible Reality: The Boy Who Wanted to Be A Lion

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