CINEMA: NICK PARK: HERE'S THE REAL BEST PICTURE

NICK PARK'S ANIMATED DELIGHTS EARN THEIR THIRD ACADEMY AWARD

OH, YES, THERE WERE DEBATES about the quality of feature films in this year's Academy Award race. Really now, can anyone but Mel Gibson and Pat Buchanan have thought Braveheart the very best movie of 1995? But on one matter, few of the cognoscenti would argue. The freshest, most beguiling film to win an Oscar last week was an epic you may have never heard of: A Close Shave, Nick Park's stop-motion, comedy-thriller mini-masterpiece about a dog named Gromit and his pet Englishman, Wallace.

In a sluggish era for what most people think of as movies--those two-hour, live-action behemoths that saturate...

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