Now Streaming: ‘Eleven Moving Moments with Evelyn Lambart’
by Pat Mullen
Re-discover some building blocks of Canadian film history in Eleven Moving Moments with Evelyn Lambart. This new documentary from the National Film Board of Canada, directed by Oscar-nominee Donald McWilliams (Sunrise Over Tiananmen Square), examines the work and legacy of NFB animator Evelyn Lambart. The film premiered last year at the Ottawa International Animation Festival and is now available to stream for free from the NFB.
History books and programming notes often cite Lambart in part for her collaborations with Norman McLaren, one of the Board’s biggest animation pioneers, but her contribution to Canadian film is worth acknowledging and celebrating in its own right. Her works with McLaren include the classic Begone Dull Care (one of the best Canadian films ever), the innovative A Chairy Tale (which earned an Oscar nomination for McLaren) and Short and Suite (earned a BAFTA nomination – which Lambart and McLaren shared). Lambart’s films highlighted within the documentary include her patriotic animated anthem O Canada, which screened in a restoration at festivals in 2013 to highlight its groundbreaking 3D animation; The Town Country and the Mouse, a re-imagining of the Aesop’s fable and Fine Feathers, perhaps Lambart’s best solo credit with its wonderful cut-out birds and simple storybook palette.
The mix of films highlight Lambart’s two distinct aesthetics. In her films with McLaren, she displays a fine hand at experimental animation that plays like free-form jazz. Her solo works favour solid backgrounds with brightly coloured paper characters that pop off the screen with vivid detail. McWilliams offers a fine revisit to Lambart’s work – an important retrospective to honour one of the many unsung women behind the cameras of Canadian film.
Watch Eleven Moving Moments with Evelyn Lambart below: