The library was kind enough to have a copy of Wallace and Gromit in Three Amazing Adventures: the original three short films and the 10 "Cracking Contraptions" short-shorts from a few years ago. "Turbo Diner" (the cooking-food-at-the-table machine) was probably my favorite short-short -- the payoff made me laugh out loud -- and of the original shorts I most loved A Close Shave.
It's easy to see how much the filmmakers learned between A Grand Day Out and A Close Shave -- it's so much more cinematic, and usually if I say something's "cinematic" that means I especially like it. But the qualities that made me really like the movie are there in the original shorts, too, of course: the gentleness of the tone, Wallace's slightly cracked optimism, Gromit's moods (I really perked up at his I'm-mad-as-hell close-up in The Wrong Trousers), the machines, and the music (now how catchy is Julian Nott's main theme?). It's good-feeling stuff, done with love. I mean, "Shopper 13" had me cheering on a hobbling shopping cart! "Oh dear, is it gonna make it? You can do it! Keep going!"
OK, so this ain't the most exciting post. I'm still waking up! (Jeez.)