Bob Stenhouse worked largely alone to visualise this luminously-animated ode to the "nation of drunkards" (as New Zealand was tagged in the House of Lords in 1838). A shepherd tricks a Mackenzie barman out of a bottle of ‘Hokonui Lightning', but too much pioneer spirit sees him haunted by the devil's daughter. In 1986 Frog was nominated for an Oscar for Best Animated Short; later an animation festival in Annecy, France judged it one of the best animated films made that century. A short 'making of' clip at the end offers hints of the hard work behind the film's distinctive look.
By far the most outrageous injustice of the whole business, though, was the selection of A Greek Tragedy as the best animated short film. It is a witty and original work, but — all chauvinism aside — its visual impact is not a patch on our National Film Unit's The Frog, the Dog and the Devil. There ain't no justice. We was robbed.– Peter Calder on the 1987 Academy Awards, The NZ Herald, 3 April 1987, section 3, page 9
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