Animated fantasy-adventure Away is distributed in UK cinemas by Bilibaba, following its premiere at the 2019 Animafest Zagreb in Croatia. A teenage boy wakes up on a mysterious island where, in a stunning oasis, he befriends a small bird. Guarding the oasis is a dark, mysterious and enormous creature who can drain life forces. The boy and the bird escape the oasis on a motorcycle, after discovering a map that shows them how to get off the island, but the dark creature follows them. Will they escape to safety?
- The hand-drawn animation gives a unique, painterly quality to every frame, with every frame exquisitely crafted and absolutely stunning to behold, emphasising that computer animation is not the genre’s be-all and end-all.
- A charming, well-paced narrative split into four Chapters, which celebrate the magnificent beauty and wonders of nature, and the importance of friendship, all while having a rather exciting sense of adventure.
- There is not a single word of dialogue, rather we understand what is happening from the on-screen narrative and the characters’ expressions during its arc, proving that a compelling narrative can be crafted with zero dialogue.
- A wonderful score which is just the right accompaniment to such a stunning celebration of nature’s beauty, while the tempo reflects (and even conveys) perfectly the emotions of the boy and the bird.
- The film is only 75 minutes long and you are ultimately left wanting more, particularly given that the narrative does end quite abruptly.