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A violent arrest outside Changchun, China.

Can This Repeat the Success of Last Years Record Breaker at the Oscars?

Eternal Spring


Genre: Documentary, Animation
Year Released: 2022
Runtime: 1h 26m
Director(s): Jason Loftus
Where To Watch: In select theaters, check out for the showing nearest you

RAVING REVIEW: An animation with an important story to tell. Yet somehow misses the real target here. The story seems to focus more on the actions than the events' importance.

Last year, we had FLEE, an international animation that was also a documentary, and now we have ETERNAL SPRING, an international animation that is also a documentary. Can lightning strike twice? Unfortunately not; it was more like a mild thunderstorm for me.

I wanted to enjoy this; the synopsis made it sound like an intriguing story with incredible risks taken. Instead, we got a pretty mediocre event because of the country it took place in and the actions of the government there going unchecked.

While it’s understandable why those who committed the acts wanted to tell this story, I think there should’ve been more focus on why they faced such terrible consequences instead of the journey itself. I know it probably sounds like I’m talking in circles here, but I don’t want to take anything away from those who did what they needed to.

On the surface level, I think it’s an interesting way to go about telling stories, and I was also impressed with FLEE because of the same reasoning. Taking a hard-to-tell tale and making it into an animation softens the blow of the more painful parts throughout the film. Yet still managing to share the significance of what happened with people.

Even after all of that, I would still recommend checking this one out; it’s a unique enough experience that most will find something to appreciate it. While watching the film, I was talking with a friend, and they pointed out how much it sometimes looked like a video game. I thought it looked more like a motion comic, although it would’ve been fascinating had they gone all in on that idea and made it feel like it, including camera movements, etc. That could have added an interesting element that would’ve made it more unique.

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Chris Jones
Entertainment Editor

Chris Jones is the Mail Entertainment Editor covering Movies and Television topics. He is from Washington, Illinois, and is the owner, writer, and editor of Overly Honest Reviews.