Laurent Boileau and Jung Henin (or just Jung, as he goes by) co-directed and released the “animated true story” Approved for Adoption last year in Europe. After enjoying great critical success and winning several awards at film festivals, the feature has come to America. The 70 minute film is part documentary footage, part traditional animation adapted from Jung’s popular French graphic novel, Couleur de Peau: Miel (Color of Skin: Honey).
The story traces Jung’s memories of being adopted as a child from Korea by Belgium parents and his inherent struggles adapting to life as an outsider.
The film, animated by Jung, is beautifully crafted and the art direction is full of powerful contrasts in color and shadow, underscoring Jung’s inner division. The trailer is short (and subtitled) but so fresh and charming that I was totally drawn into Jung’s world. The film’s style has an anime-like quality and a bit of a video-game feel, but there are scenes that are also whimsically drawn like when little Jung’s adopted mother tells him he is “a rotten apple among ripe ones” and the boy’s imagination envisions himself falling through the air like Alice in Wonderland and turning into a rotten apple.
The film premiered at festivals in the US in March and is scheduled for DVD release in November. I am very excited to see this film and hopeful that more artists will put their talents to work, animating more films in this way by hand.
Are you excited to see the film, have you already seen it? Let us know down below.