Not only is A Town Called Panic (Panique au village) the weirdest movie I've seen at Fantastic Fest this year, it is threatening to knock the top contenders off my All-Time Strangest Movies Ever, including Forbidden Zone. I spent half the movie with my jaw dropped and my mouth open, just staring in disbelief. Fortunately, I spent the other half of the movie laughing -- this Belgian animated film is as entertaining as it is bizarre.

The movie is animated, and I can't quite tell how it was shot. It looks like stop-motion animation. In fact, it looks like someone opened a child's toybox, pulled out a bunch of toys at random, and cast them as characters in this film without much concern about which toy would play which part. Thus we have horse, cowboy and Indian toys living together in one house as though they were characters from an American sitcom. However, the characters sometimes move in ways that look more like claymation than the animation of hard plastic toys.


categories Reviews, Cinematical