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Love Tricycle (2003)

  Directed by: Andrew Goode
Written by: Andrew Goode, Mark Saltzer, Craig Wentworth
Links: Love Tricycle on the IMDb, Official site, Buy on DVD
Genre: Short

This movie gets: 8.00 (4 ratings) Ranking: Ranked equal 53rd of 187 movies (2 ratings minimum; see full chart)

Love Tricycle (2003) is also mentioned in em_fiction's review of Clara (2005) and pearly's review of Luxo Jr. (1986).

"Lovely" - a review by andy-j

Ahh to live the life of a bicycle! To ride around without a care in the world, own a pet skateboard, and tingle your bell all the live-long day. Yep! Don't get me started on bikes, or I'll be yabbering all night. But now that I've caught your ear, let's talk about a fantastic little short film that I saw recently called Love Tricyle. In Love Tricycle, we meet young Beau and Bec, two bicycles who have a bit of a thing for each other. As they take their first tentative "steps" towards getting together, Bec's jealous ex-boyfriend, Harley, steps in and causes trouble. Harley is a real bad boy. As far as he is concerned, if he can't have Bec, no-one can!

Love Tricycle is a delight. I was instantly drawn to the way bicycles ride around on their own. It felt incredibly natural and right. The characters express themselves through the movement of their handlebars, almost as if the handlebars were a mouth, or human shoulders. Their communication is very expressive, enough so that even though not a single word is uttered, we can follow what's happening without any problems (with the additional help of a soundtrack). There are plenty of cute touches, like the pet skateboards and the bell birds. The world of Rimside is a giant skate park, coloured with all sorts of bike-related things. The whole thing is very imaginative and original, and there are plenty of little touches and things going on in the background to catch your eye. Love Tricycle uses CGI... oh I probably should have mentioned that earlier.. anyway, yeah CGI. It's top-notch stuff. Absolutely flawless, highly detailed and just delightful.

The whole thing is a delight. It's a simple, classic story, but it's great fun and obviously a labour of love for director Andrew Goode and his team. The DVD comes with a good little set of extras, including a look at the various stages of the CGI development.

andy-j gives this movie 8 out of 10.
Review created on Fri 17 Dec 2004

"(Bike) chains of love" - a review by em_fiction

Alright, so the story basically goes like this: boy meets girl. Boy falls in love with girl. Boy saves girl's life. Girl falls in love with boy. And jealous ex-boyfriend comes in and tries to ruin everything. Sound familiar? Well, that's because this general plot skeleton has been used about a kajillion times before. So what makes this film stand out above the rest? Well, apart from the fact that it's a beatifully animated short, all the characters are cute little bicycles.

Andrew Goode and his team do an absolutely splendid job animating this 3D short. The colourful, stylish, eye-pleasing animation, backed by the simple yet so incredibly original idea, together create a wonderful package. And despite the fact that the US is known for having the monopoly on 3D animation, this all, one-hundred percent Australian gem really does proclaim to the world the kind of guns our film industry has. In fact, attached with this DVD (which Goode himself was kind enough to give us) is a long list of festivals and awards which Tricycle has deservedly been part of.

What I found most impressive was how Goode was able to establish this complete world within such time limitations. The way he parallels each bike with a certain kind of person, and the skateboards with dogs (like the most memorable Dalmatian duo), as well as all sorts of other animals and buildings, each given their own "bike" alter ego, is just so endearing. My sister loved it, that's for sure.

The plot department was the film's only slight weakness. Even though it could've been worked on just a bit more, compared to how refreshingly original and nicely animated the rest of the film is, plot really is nothing more than an insignificant flaw. Watching this incredible concept of a "bike world " come to life, something I would've never thought of in a million years, all rendered in animation on par with Pixar, was just so refreshing and entertaining.

em_fiction gives this movie 8 out of 10.
Review created on Wed 22 Sep 2004

"Come along for the ride" - a review by mino

Love Tricycle is an Australian computer-animated short which tells the story of a bicycle in love. It's set in the town of Rimside (entirely populated by bicycles), and stars Beau, a handsome young bike who works at the local school. Beau falls head-over-wheels in love with a passing ‘girl's bike’, Bec, and is determined to make her his. Unfortunately, someone else has the same idea… Harley, the rather evil-looking BMX, who wants Bec for himself. What follows is a fun 14-minute adventure in which Beau and Harley compete for Bec's affections.

The storyline of Love Tricycle is simple, but quite effective. It's not the story that makes it though — it's the detail that went into the production. It's hard not to be reminded of Toy Story (1995) in the way Andrew Goode has created a marvellous, self-contained little world. It's amazing how much detail the animators have packed into the world of Rimside, and it's absolutely fabulous to watch — more than once, too, as you'll pick up something new each time.

While the bikes themselves (both the three stars and the supporting cast) are absolutely incredible — the amount of personality they manage to imbue these bikes with has to be seen to be believed — it's actually the town itself that's the star of the short. Rimside is just a magical little universe all on its own, and I lost count of the number of times (even in just 14 minutes) that I found myself laughing at some little detail. Every sign, every tree, every fixture: each is beautifully crafted, clever, and often very funny. From the little ‘bellbirds’ (shaped like bicycle bells) to the names of the movies showing at the local multiplex, everything has been made in such meticulous and wonderful detail it's hard not to be enraptured.

There's no dialogue at all in the film, just a rather charming little score which sets the scene. The main thrust of the movie itself wasn't as brilliant as the execution, if you catch my drift — I found the ending in particular started to get a little bit dull, particularly as there weren't as many fun background details to watch at that end of the movie and the action started to get a bit ‘same-y’. However, it's hard to find fault, because the town of Rimside is so inviting and entertaining that you can't help but be drawn in.

The Love Tricycle DVD production is worthy of note, by the way, largely because it contains one of the most impressive sets of extras I've seen in some time. Every detail of the production is laid out, and it's a fascinating insight into the modern-day animation process. Be sure not to miss it.

A very entertaining (and family-friendly) short which deserves to be widely seen.

mino gives this movie 8 out of 10.
Review created on Tue 24 Aug 2004

"Resisting the urge to make bike-related puns" - a review by pearly

Love Tricycle is an animated short film about a love triangle between three bicycles. There's Beau, a mountain bike, who is an all-round good guy - he teaches at the local school, and he knows how to treat a girl right. And there's Harley, a BMX bike, and a real bad boy - he knows what he wants, and he'll do almost anything to get it. And what he wants is Bec, the heroine of the story, who is never without her skateboard dog Ollie.

The story is lovingly crafted, with all the attention to detail that goes along with well-made animated stories. There is no dialogue at all in the film; the story is told only through animation, sound effects, and the original score which plays out over the entire length of the film, telling us through sound when to hate a character, and when to love them (among other things).

The town of Rimside, in which the story is set, is, at first appearances, a regular human town, but on closer inspection, you realise that everything is just a little bikey. The trees are made of metal sprockets and so on, and the bike outside the department store who is collecting money for charity is actually collecting to guard against rust, obviously a terrible disease in this bicycle world.

And then there's the characters. The hero, Beau, is a slick looking mountain bike, whereas the baddie is a tough looking BMX - you can almost imagine the human version of him having tattoos and and unshaven face. Bec is resplendent in pink, with streamers hanging from her handlebars. The communication between characters is done via movement of handlebars (like smiles), brakes, and the overall "stance" of the bikes. The technique reminded me of Hello (2003), in which audio players (CD player, cassette deck, etc.) were animated and given personalities.

Andrew Goode obviously knows his bikes! Some of the ideas in the film are quite interesting - and Andrew knows that it's not possible to make a film about bikes and not include spokey-dokes. I remember when I got spokey-dokes, and I thought I was the coolest thing on the block. I had to take them off when I had my first BMX race, and I was so distraught that I crashed before the first corner, and I never raced again.

The romantic storyline didn't impress me as much as the complex animation and the overall concept of animating bikes into human-like characters, but I was entertained throughout nonetheless. The cute signs in the closing credits finished things off nicely, adding yet another animated film standard to the mix.

For anyone interested in the animation process, a copy of the DVD would be a worthy addition to your collection. The material in the special features section is vast and informative: you can watch the entire film from four different angles (storyboard, layout, animation, and final), and you can change the audio to either music only, effects only, or both - something I haven't seen before, but which makes the use of sound to convey the story even more obvious.

pearly gives this movie 8 out of 10.
Review created on Wed 28 Jul 2004

Movie review statistics

Number of reviews: 4
Average rating: 8.00
Lowest rating: 8 (by andy-j, em_fiction, mino, pearly)
Highest rating: 8 (by andy-j, em_fiction, mino, pearly)
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