MORE Adult Animated Films You Can Watch Instead of Sausage Party
Waltz With Bashir:
An Israeli animated autobiographical war-documentary film about director Ari Folman attempting to recover repressed memories from his time as a soldier in the Lebanon War of 1982. This is a very dark film that explores many heavy themes throughout. It was actually quite controversial in some Arabian countries, being officially banned in Lebanon.
It's about a young girl growing up in the middle of the 1979 Iranian revolution and the political conflicts and government corruption she dealt with at that time, covering mostly the first 20 years of her life. This film was controversial too, with Iranian government only allowing a limited release and Bangkok's International Film Festival dropping it completely, as well as being protested against after an airing on a Tunisian television network, and being completely banned in Lebanon.
Mary and Max:
A stop motion film about two strangers, an adult with Asperger's Syndrome and a little girl who lives in an abusive environment, who one day become pen-pals. It's actually a very profound film that deals with themes such as friendship, isolation, abuse, suicide, mental illness, and more. The film has many heavy moments as well as many light-hearted and funny ones, having just as much drama as it has comedy.
Strange Frame, Love and Sax:
A 2012 cutout animated science-fiction musical film starring Tara Strong and Claudia Black, about a lesbian couple from another planet who fall in love after meeting each other while escaping a riot and form a band with an ultimate goal of worldwide fame, but are eventually split apart. Many of the characters in this movie are LGBTQA+, and all of them are of color.
A Scanner Darkly:
An American animated sci-fi thriller film about a future where America lost the war on drugs and everyone is under constant police surveillance, directed by Richard Linklater and starring Robert Downey Jr., Keanu Reeves, and Winona Ryder, based on Phillip K. Dick's novel of the same name.
Also directed by Richard Linklater, an American animated drama documentary about a guy who constantly finds himself placed in various dream-like realities, most of which have people who have conversations with him about philosophical topics questioning the nature of reality and existence itself.
A Spanish animated drama film about a retired bank manager suffering from Alzheimer's who is taken into an assisted living home and makes a new friend, who together try to disguise Emilio's worsening illness from doctors so that they don't transfer him to the top floor.
A Dutch drama film about a missionary named Augustus whose sister, a former porn star named 'Princess', leaves behind her daughter after she dies of a drug overdose. Augustus adopts her daughter and embarks on a violent mission to destroy all existing evidence of Princess's career. Probably the most explicit one of all of these films, not for the faint of heart due to it's themes and graphic nature.
French stop-motion film about a group of aliens who get captured and kept as pets by another, more spiritually/technologically advanced species of aliens, but organize a mass rebellion after one of the aliens from the advanced planet educates the other spieces, which is forbidden. This film contains very surreal, psychedelic imagery that's similar to Classic Sesame Street, The Electric Company, and Yellow Submarine.
Abbas, a chubby young boy, sat on the side of a narrow village road, held his injured mother’s hand and wept. “Don’t leave me, mother, don’t go, don’t go.” “Take care of your brothers and sisters,“ the mother moaned softly, as her eyes closed leaving two white slits. A piece of shrapnel had cut into her chest and almost severed her right arm. Blood stained mother and child.
Abbas, his mother, brother, aunts and a grandmother, 18 in total, were cramped inside a small white minivan, fleeing their village in south Lebanon when an Israeli rocket pierced the roof of the car. Now the survivors were scattered on the road or in the shadow of a building crying, while inside the van lay the headless corpse of an uncle, a dead grandmother and a neighbor.
“Why are you leaving me,” Abbas started yelling at his mother, as her arm fell on the ground. He buried his face in his hands and wept. His brother, 12-year old Ali, stood on the other side of the mother, his hand bandaged and eyes staring into the horizon, as the Lebanese Red Cross started helping the survivors.
EGYPT. Sinai Peninsula. 1972. Hand of a dead Egyptian soldier.
‘Five years after the 1967 war in Sinai, I returned with colleagues to have a look at the battlefield. The wind had blown away the sand, revealing a macabre memento of the war. The hand of an Egyptian soldier who had found his grave in the dunes. Next to it was his helmet. His forefinger was pointing to heaven as though in admonition: No More War. But Sadat had arrived 10 years too late for him’
This image I took, as the only embedded photographer with the Israeli Defense Forces in Lebanon (IDF), depicts a classic “sacrifice” visual narrative of a hero giving his life for his nation. I was told by several people that it was ’very Vietnam’. Since this image was not overtly gruesome and since the soldier survived his injuries, it could be prominently displayed. I later learned that this scene actually represents a victim of a friendly fire incident, though it had already circulated and had been published with the caption that this soldier had been wounded in a Hezbollah attack. Because I insisted that information be included in the caption, the image lost value as a propaganda tool.
I have come to believe that embedded “war photography” simplifies the brutal ambiguity of conflict into well-worn and widely recognized visual templates. We, “war photographers,” help in reinforcing masculine myths of war as a purging experience. As it stands, I believe my images did a great disservice to the people who died or participated in this unnecessary and farcical demonstration of force in 2006, which besides claiming the lives of more than one hundred Israeli soldiers, also killed almost 30 times more Lebanese civilians than the 44 Israeli civilian dead. This conditioned Israeli public opinion to accept similar carnage in Gaza in 2009 and 2014 as a reasonable response.
Lily Ben-David gets emotional when she talks about her childhood in Sudan. She still dreams of her school, the courtyard, the balcony and frolicking on the banks of the Blue Nile, even though it has been more than 50 years since she saw any of it.
Sudan’s Jews once made up the smallest Jewish community in the Middle East, a close-knit group of 1,000 people who enjoyed warm relations with their Muslim neighbors. But the establishment of Israel in 1948, followed by a series of Arab-Israeli wars, forced them to flee in the 1960s. Although Israel and Sudan are now bitter enemies, the remnants of that community retain fond memories of the northeast African country.
“If I could get a ticket under an assumed name, I will go, honestly,” the 71-year-old Ben-David, who left Sudan in 1964 and now lives outside Tel Aviv, said with a chuckle.
The history of Sudanese Jews has been largely unknown, even among world Jewry, until now.
Over the last year, Daisy Abboudi, a British researcher and granddaughter of Sudanese Jews, has been working to record the stories of her forefathers. Adding to very few works on Sudanese Jews, she started the website Tales of Jewish Sudan, where she posts extracts of interviews with living members of the community.
The stories, presented in the interviewees’ own words, include the celebration of a Jewish holiday, a Miss Khartoum beauty contest and food recipes. Abboudi, 26, hopes to collect these stories in a book.
The idea came to her during a discussion over dinner with her family on their life in Sudan.
“We should keep these stories, we should preserve them,” she recalled telling her family. “They are all getting old. If someone doesn’t do it now, it’s going to be too late,” she said.
Sudan was home to a few Jewish families in the 19th century during Ottoman rule. An Islamic uprising forced them to convert to Islam. The recapture of Sudan by an Anglo-Egyptian army years later allowed for converts to return to Judaism, though some remained Muslim. The expansion of commerce and the civil service under colonial rule brought some Jewish merchants and administrators from other parts of the Middle East and North Africa.
The community grew to about 1,000 people at its peak, with most living in the big cities of Khartoum, Omdurman, Khartoum North and Wad Madani. Many met regularly at Khartoum’s synagogue or the city’s Jewish Recreational Club.
“We used to go to the synagogue on the Sabbath, celebrate New Year, and if someone was missing, someone would ask,” remembers Regina Cohen, 70, who left Sudan in 1966 and also lives in Israel.
Most had warm relations with the rest of society. David Gabra, 74, used to join his Muslim friends in fasting during Ramadan.
“I used to fast Ramadan with the rest of the Sudanese, 30 days, so I can sit and eat with the rest when the cannon goes off,” marking the end of the fast, he said.
Yehoshoa Ben-David, Lilly’s husband, warmly remembers his time at the University of Khartoum and walking to the nearby soccer stadium to support the “Al-Hilal” team.
But the creation of Israel in 1948 and the Arab-Israeli wars made daily life uncomfortable for many Sudanese Jews. Anti-Israel protests erupted, and rhetoric at times became anti-Jewish, bringing on suspicion, hate and intimidation.
Ben-David, 73, says he remembers when a crowd threw stones at his aunt’s house in downtown Khartoum during the 1956 war. Just after the Six Day War, in 1967, things got even worse.
“They arrested all of the men, and even my mother was called in for questioning in the police station,” said Ben-David, who said he left the country a week before the war.
The nationalization of big businesses in the early 1970s added to doubts about their future. Feeling threatened and uncertain, most Sudanese Jews reluctantly decided to migrate to the United States, Britain, Switzerland or Israel, leaving their homes, shops, friends and wealth behind.
Abboudi, who has interviewed 50 people for her project, summed up their experiences and memories as a mix of nostalgia, sorrow and bitterness.
“It’s a bit bittersweet when they look back because on the one hand it was such an amazing life but on the other, they were effectively forced to leave,” she said.
Robert Kramer, a professor of history at St. Norbert College, Wisconsin, who has written on Sudanese Jews, said he also has noticed the community’s strong sense of identity.
“The thing that really struck me the most about Sudanese Jews is that sense of nostalgia, a lot of them really felt Sudanese,” Kramer said.
Not much remains in Sudan of the Jewish minority: A handful of elderly people, a neglected cemetery, an old optician’s shop sign.
“I still have the taste of the water of the Nile in my mouth,” said Cohen.