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‘The Little Broomstick Rider’ review: Clever illustrated fairy tale filled with the dark arts & dark humor

Creative, funny, and topical.

The Little Broomstick Rider is a six episode series available to watch at the Slamdance Film Festival. Based on the works of 19th century writer Ludwig Bechstein, the story is about a young boy who goes on trial for witchcraft. Though all six episodes run just over half an hour, the expected themes are covered, Hysteria, sexism, and classism are all touched upon on. What makes writer-director Matteo Bernardini’s release different is the style and humor in which it is done.

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Much like the rest of the world Bernardini had to adjust to Covid-19. The result was a project that relies on paper, pencils, pens, scissors, glue, and Bernardini’s two hands. The Little Broomstick Rider is an illustrated series. Calling it animated would inaccurate as the show is more of a pop up book come to life than an animated show.

The Little Broomstick Rider constantly shows off its creativity and humor. Though the episodes are short, they are full of the story beats needed to mesmerize the audiences. The characters are fun to watch and the illustrations are beautiful. There is a sense of fun to the project that borders on nostalgia. It is one of the more unique and entertaining projects to come about due to Covid.

The Slamdance Festival is virtual February 12-25. Tickets can be purchased from the official site.

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