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Blood Tea and Red String (2006)

Christiane Cegavske  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)


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Product Details

  • Actors: Christiane Cegavske
  • Format: Animated, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Cinema Epoch
  • DVD Release Date: November 7, 2006
  • Run Time: 71 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000HIVIRY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #264,442 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Blood Tea and Red String" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Commentary by filmmaker Christiane Cegavske and critic Luke Y. Thompson
  • Character and production stills
  • Miniature paintings
  • Trailer

Editorial Reviews

Blood Tea and Red String is a handmade stop-motion fairy tale for adults. Thirteen years in the making, Christiane Cegavske's dialogue free film tells the tale of the struggle between the aristocratic White Mice and the rustic Creatures Who Dwell Under the Oak over the doll of their heart's desire. The Mice commission the Oak Dwellers to create a beautiful doll for them. When she is complete, the Creatures fall in love with her and refuse to give her up. Resorting to thievery the Mice abscond with her in the middle of the night. Meet fantastical creatures and view dazzling scenery as the Creatures Who Dwell Under the Oak journey through this mystical land to reclaim their love. See the mice descend into debauchery as they become drunk on blood tea! See what happens when the Oak Dwellers eat the yellow fruit! A heart rending musical score that was composed and performed by Mark Growden accompanies this disturbing and wondrous adventure.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical and mysterious March 30, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I'm really not sure how to describe this movie, so I'll start with the bare facts. Cegavske appears to have started from some art-school sketchbooks, and assembled a gorgeous stop-animation, supposedly taking 13 years to complete. She did all the design, scripting and animation, so this was clearly a labor of love. She created remarkable characters and sets, beautifully crafted. The composer she engaged for the score did an outstanding job, especially in the unearthly tones of the mouses' dance.

All of which says nothing about the characters and plot of the movie, which I still can't quite put words to. It carried the sense of a fully-elaborated dream world, but of someone else's dreams. The different beings seemed to act out rituals of deep importance, all of which eluded me. Rich, detailed imagery abounds, almost like the imagery of a Tarot deck - but with all of the arcane meanings unspoken. The viewer rides along in this wordless world, sensing the characters' urgency but never making out the reason for it.

Cegavske's puppets and props bring that baffling world to life. Even though this medium has been used for years in children's entertainment, make no mistake: this is for grownups. Skittish children might not tolerate the deaths of characters, or scenes like the "blood tea." A few moments drag; the script's pacing seemed uneven, and the puppet's motions never flowed smoothly. I can't let the little things get in my way, though. This stands as an incredible work of creativity, and a glimpse into another mind's imaginings.

-- wiredweird
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing to see & savor! April 10, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This would be an astonishing film under any circumstances, given its detail & dreamlike, sometimes nightmarish quality. Knowing that it was made by one person over 13 years only increases my admiration. Truly a labor of love! Rich colors, fascinating characters that capture both the innocence & exaggerated fears of a child's world, memorable images that seem almost archetypal -- just stunning. It has the look & flavor of a very old tale, repeated over countless generations. If you're looking for something different, something very far from the mass market animation that seems to exist solely to sell cheap merchandise, then you won't go wrong here. Most highly recommended!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BRILLIANT March 13, 2008
By Azriel
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This movie is absolutely amazing. This isn't the type of movie you sit around and watch on the couch with your friends and a bowl of popcorn - it's a strange and surreal fairy tale. Every time I watch it, I am absolutely amazed that one person put this entire film together by herself, and that she was dedicated enough to stick with the project over the 13 years that it was in production. If you're looking for action or comedy, this movie isn't for you - if you are looking for a film that is unlike anything else out there, then I definitely recommend it. It's beautiful - I am so glad I bought it. If you like independent films, this is about as independent as it gets!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark Fairy Tale January 11, 2007
Format:DVD
This film is not for everyone, but if you like things that are truly unusual and artistic, without a lot of dialogue, check this one out. This is not a kid's movie, even though it's a fairy tale of sorts. The artist who made the film took years to hand-craft each "puppet" (for lack of a better word -- this is not Sesame Street...). If you like dark, artistic animation such as The Nightmare Before Christmas or Spirited Away, and/or darkly dreamy fairy tales such as The Company of Wolves or Ginger Snaps, and/or films about dreams such as The Science of Sleep, you might check out this film.
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars deep, sweet, smart and beautiful November 15, 2006
By Jim
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
At first the idea of "dialogue free" scared me off, as did stop action animation, since Davy and Goliath and Gumby always freaked me out, but I read a review in Daily Variety that compared it to David Lynch and Beatrix Potter, so I had to check it out. WOW! Deep saturated colors, amazing music and most importantly deeply gorgeous storyline with phenomenal characters that really come alive. The layers of symbolism and the tragic tale of love and loss make this a MUST HAVE for film fans into Dali, Browning, Lynch, etc. Awesome!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Darkly traggic and beautiful January 20, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent yet very "odd" film. It's definitely not a "normal" film like you would find in the theaters. I really loved the film, but some people may find it a bit too odd for their tastes. If you like artsy, dark, and symbolic sort of stuff, you'll like this film. If you go to movies thinking the Rock is the best actor evar, then don't watch this.

The animation is quite good, and the usage of colors and images is excellent. It's quite amazing how much you can feel for the characters in this film. The DVD comes with some extras where you get to see the artist's paintings as she discusses them with another person. I recommend this to anyone who likes the "out of the norm" artistic films.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excercise for your senses. December 12, 2008
Format:DVD
I have watched this twice in as many days and saw more the second time. That's a good thing to be able to gain insight into a movie the more you watch.
There is no dialogue. And thankfully so. The music, the settings, the landscape, the creatures and the cinematography all create a world that stimulate your senses and imagination.
When you read a book, you are creating the world in your mind... when i watched this, i was creating the dialogue in my mind. Being able to do so speaks volumes to how expressive the creatures are through the details in their subtle movement. The music was also simple and mystical - simple enough to allow your mind to make your own emotions to fit the scene.
Best description I can think of : An impressionist experience that took me on a relaxing vacation away from the world.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Best stop-animation creation
This is the most unique stop-animation movie I've ever seen. It took the creator nearly 13 years to complete and the story she tells is fascinating. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Merilee Mulvey
5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacular visionary acheivement
This is a stunning achievement. The movie is set in a world onto itself, and the plot unfolds as a dreamy vision. Read more
Published 17 months ago by raindro
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome hand-crafted stop-motion animation film!
Awesome hand-crafted stop-motion animation film! Christiane Cegavske's beautiful puppets inhabit a strange and wonderful land, where their story unfolds to Mark Growden's score. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Samazama
1.0 out of 5 stars Uhhhh? wtf?
I'm sure it would have been 5 stars if I had of recieved it, it would have been 4 if the seller had responded to my email about never receiving it, but this is just awful, I was... Read more
Published on January 31, 2011 by Sarabyrde
3.0 out of 5 stars HAVE TO WATCH A 2ND TIME TO APPRECIATE
At 1st glance this "film" is quite boring and tedious to watch. But reflecting back on it some of it was PURE GENIUS. Read more
Published on October 8, 2010 by Timothy Branik
5.0 out of 5 stars strange
This is an effective film in stop motion. The silent film has weird music and strange color. Hard to explain it, just have to see it. I felt like I was on mushrooms or something. Read more
Published on January 26, 2010 by Roland
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Idiosyncratic (in a good sense),
I tremendously enjoyed this movie. This is animation at its best, with patient craftmanship used in the service of a genuine artistic vision. Read more
Published on November 24, 2009 by Un francais en angleterre
4.0 out of 5 stars An achievement
I didn't really know what to expect going in to this film. I had come across it many moons ago while looking for another DVD title, then spent the next year with it on my Wishlist. Read more
Published on October 18, 2009 by Jason Payne
5.0 out of 5 stars goth without all the darkness
a lovely piece of cinema/animation. the characters, depsite having no dialog, communicate their actions in a very realistic fashion, even if the story is somewhat unrealistic. Read more
Published on June 28, 2008 by djim reynolds
4.0 out of 5 stars Maybe I'm just not artsy enough
I was expecting a lot from this film, but found myself multitasking the whole time. It was "weird" but not the proactive weird that sucks you in (well, it didn't suck me in). Read more
Published on April 27, 2008 by A. S. Herry
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