Skip to main content

Rhythmetic

Canada, 1956 (MIFF 1957, Animated Moments)

Director: Norman McLaren

Animation artists Norman McLaren and Evelyn Lambart endow the subject of arithmetic with lively humour as numerals indulge in unprecedented antics. Attention is focussed on what numerals do in combination with and independently of one another. The screen becomes a numerical free-for-all as digits meet in playful encounter, jostling, attacking, eluding one another. Plus, minus and equation signs act as strict disciplinarians to ensure that every new development maintains a proper arithmetical balance. Synthetic sound punctuates the visuals, adding to the amusement of the film.

See also...

Opening Speech

Ostensibly, Norman McLaren intends to welcome the audience, but is frustrated by the microphone which exhibits surprising temper, reluctance and guile. ... More »

Pas De Deux

McLaren employed a multi-image technique to film two ballet performets in this study in the grace of dance. It was filmed against a black backdrop with rear lighting oudining the white-clad dancers ... More »

A Chairy Tale

Made without commentary or dialogue, this film is a simple ballet of a youth and a kitchen chair. The ensuing struggle, first for mastery and then for understanding forms the action of the film. The ... More »

Mail Early

McLaren's first film for the NFB was this publicity clip for Canada Post. Non-abstract symbols drawn with pen on clear 35mm stock were superimposed on a painted background. ... More »

Opening Speech

McLaren appears on a stage but cannot make his planned speech on account of a feisty, bad-tempered microphone that finally has him chasing it around the stage. Befitting a cartoon sketch, McLaren ... More »

Spheres

Norman McLaren continues his investigations into the possibilities of animated film with his latest film. Spheres, his first film since Pas de deux, is set to music of Bach fugues. The illusion of ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director