A Matter Of Loaf And Death - Oscar Animated Shorts 2010 #4

Country: United Kingdom
Website: http://www.wallaceandgromit.com/films/loafanddeath/
Director: Nick Park
Writer: Nick Park and Bob Baker

Summary: Wallace and Gromit are back in their latest short adventure. Having set up a new bakery business using Wallace's latest invention, our duo learn that now might not be the best time to be in the business: bakers are being murdered two to the baker's dozen (ahem) and they may be the next targets, suddenly it's all A Matter Of Loaf And Death.

If you're in the UK then odds are you know who Wallace and Gromit are. Created by Nick Park's Aardman Animations during the late 80's, the duo have fronted Aardman's efforts for many years, often turning up in Christmas specials and even featuring in their very own 2005 cinema release, The Curse of The Were-Rabbit.

Endearing though the duo still are this latest 29-minute long version feels very familiar and in fact follows an indentical plot to previous adventures The Wrong Trousers and A Close Shave; Gromit knows who the villain is but struggles to tell bungling Wallace as he goes about his daily business. The jokes are still there to raise at least a smile but at times border on the cringe-worthy, shoe-horning in everything and anything to do with baking ('back to the grind Gromit!'), although the physical comedy is still present and correct and produced expertly in the familiar clay-mation.

Chances: Park has won the award no less than three times with A Close Shave taking the award last in 1995. I'm unsure what the rules are in terms of length but for me, the W&G episodes aren't really true short films, each one coming it at at least 29 minutes. However, if the Academy says 'yay' then like The Dude, I abide. On the one hand, this might prove too familiar to previous Aardmen entries to get a look in but on the other, Park is obviously a favourite and the timespan between victories could see a return to at least the nomination list.

Distribution: A Matter Of Loaf And Death premiered on BBC television in the UK on Christmas day and was repeated on the 10th January 2010. If you are in the UK you can watch it online here on the BBC iplayer until the 18th January although you may struggle if you are an International viewer. There is a DVD release planned for the New Year.


  1. I like Wallace and Gromit, only seen the WereRabbit film but really did enjoy it. Claymation just seems to have a classic feel to it that I can appreciate much more than a CGI animated film

  2. I know exactly what you mean, like I say it certainly doesn't hinder the film and it is endearing.

    You should check out their first feature 'A Grand Day Out'. The characters look a little different but I remember it being the best one and it had this bizzare and slightly surreal plot that involved them going to the moon to get cheese because they had ran out!