Mary and Max 2009 ***


Writer, director and animator Adam Elilot won an Oscar for his short Harvie Crumpet; he followed up with feature Mary and Max, using Claymation figures to tell a grown-up story. Mary Dinkle is an eight year old Australian girl who has an unlikely pen-pal; Max Horowitz, a middle-aged, seriously depressed man who lives in a NYV apartment. Voiced by Toni Colette and Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Mary and Max never meet, but their friendship grows through their unlikely correspondence. With vocal contributions from Eric Bana and Barry Humphries, Mary and Max is one of the few films to deal with both Asperger’s and depression in an adult fashion; there’s no quick fixes of magical revelations, but a patient consideration of the outward factors that lead to internal malaise.


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