On an icy landscape, a fierce battle rages on between a lone warrior and a fearsome beast. Though it is not clear at first what caused this battle, it is evident that the stakes are extremely high. It is only as the film progresses that it becomes clear that Spring is being held hostage. Haiwei Hou’s film Vernal Equinox drops the audience right into the heart of the battle. The animation in this film is absolutely wonderful! Vernal Equinox feels like a mash-up of modern Manga aesthetics with Disney sensibilities of the early 90’s. It is a film that manages to convey both action and emotion in a rather brief span of time. Vernal Equinox is a film that will leave audiences on a high long after film has ended.

Vernal Equinox is playing in Program #3 – A Different Perspective at the festival on June 2, 2012. For ticket information, and the full list of films playing the festival, please visit the Toronto Youth Shorts Film Festival website.