Director Ralph Bakshi (The Lord of the Rings – animated, Fritz the Cat) is a legend in the world of animation. Much of the films, television shows and shorts he worked on were groundbreaking. An indication of the type of power and respect Ralph Bakshi possessed was that this film was the first feature-length animated film green lighted by Fox. He rewarded their confidence in him by making a film that was a success at the box office. It cost $1 million to make and brought in $9 million in ticket sales.
This cult favourite was at times dark and others quirky. On the technical side, Bakshi used a combination of traditional cell animation with live film footage. The result is animation that features plenty of contrast. The use of different styles of animation has the result of bringing that much more emotion to the story being told.
This is a story set on a post-apocalyptic Earth that is inhabited by elves, fairies and mutants. Two wizard brothers are at war with one another. The diminutive wizard Avatar is trying to save the world from his evil twin brother Blackwolf.
The film features a simple message of love and more complex ones that warn of the evils of power and how society in the 1970s was heading in dangerous direction. Bakshi seemed to be warning us about the dangers (or how he perceived it to be dangerous) of our dependence on technology. The hazards of the rise of facism is also there in the background.
-24-page Collectible Book Packaging
-Ralph Bakshi: The Wizard of Animation
-Sneak Peek of Red Line and First Squad