Watch Paperman here – Disney Oscar free short animation

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animationThanks to Disney for releasing their 6-minute short animation Paperman completely free to watch below, embed or download. (And it won an Oscar for best animation.) Unfortunately, since it won an Oscar, they seem to have withdrawn some of the free ones, or allow them to be embedded. Check this one, or search YouTube.

Paperman is enchanting, and if you have ever seen French film The Red Balloon, you’ll notice a clear homage to that magical story (widely available on DVD).

Note how Paperman demonstrates the special power of animation to tell a clear visual story, even without dialogue. Free of the constraints of audible language, silent animation instantly gains a worldwide cross-cultural potential. The audience can create their own mental narrative and backstory, identify with one or other character, and formulate some lesson or question to take away.

The potential for evangelism through animations is huge. Training is strategic. YWAM offers their annual School of Cartooning and Animation for Missions.

How to use animations

Animations can be used in multiple ways. They can carry a direct evangelistic message, or else be used as conversation-starters based on a parable-like spiritual truth. And many apparently secular animations also have embedded spiritual parallels and can be used in a group setting (youth groups, other meetings), one-to-one using a downloaded animation on mobile phone, iPad or laptop, or be embedded in Facebook and Twitter posts as an informal conversation starter.

Alma, for instance, is a chillingly compelling animation with a clear message of inadvertently selling your soul, and therefore an ideal conversation gateway. Paperman itself can point to elements of our search for God, and His search for us.

Check more resources and examples of effective animations. What are your favorite animated shorts? Please post them in our comments section.

You can legitimately watch free Oscar winners, and much else beside, at Open Culture.

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