A scene from A PIG'S TAIL, directed by Sarah Cox for the Humane Society of the United States.

A Pig’s Tail (2012, Sarah Cox)

A Pig’s Tail is a lovely little short, thanks to the hands-on Aardman stop motion, Cox’s straightforward but enthusiastic direction, and Catherine Taylor’s voice acting as the protagonist. The short tells the story of a determined piglet who doesn’t exactly like being in a factory farm. She decides to do something about it.

The U.S. Humane Society co-produced Tail, so it has an educational component and that component occasionally gets in the way of good narrative. For example, the farmer–who is more traditionally animated (in a deft move)–is almost more sympathetic than the pigs. Especially given how Tail shows the reality of the brutality a starving, abused animal will render.

It’s almost too short for its own good–running about five minutes. Cox and her cast could probably have held up for a lot longer. As is, Tail is still a finely produced, delicately made film.

2/3Recommended

CREDITS

Directed by Sarah Cox; written by Matthew Walker; director of photography, Nathan Sale; edited by Victoria Stevens; music by Steven Delopoulos; produced by Jason Fletcher-Bartholomew and Christine Gutleben; released by The Humane Society of the United States.

Starring Catherine Taylor (Ginger), Sophie Angelson (Mama Pig), Heidi Lynch (Mean Piglet), James Arnold Parker (The Farmer) and Kaia Rose (Nice Piglet).

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