Let’s get cryptic, friends,

Since the invention of motion pictures, animation has crept in and out of the frame, granting filmmakers and dedicated imagineers license to innovate and push beyond the realms of the real. Despite a well earned reputation over some hundred years, animation was never strictly for children, and there exist myriad mind-expanding examples of adult animated experiments. Weird and wonderful, these fantastic visions offer surreal, challenging, and breathtaking experiences.

This Friday, Ragtag Cinema opens Cryptozoo, the combined four year effort of visionary comic book writer Dash Shaw, lead animator Emily Wolver, and eleven contributing artists. This animated feature is intimately hand drawn like the wild scrawlings in the margins of a high school notebook, and at the same time lushly detailed in painterly strokes, like a psychedelic hat tip to Henry Darger’s Vivian Girls.

The dizzying visual-information-overload is a scattershot barrage of thoughts, themes, questions, and emotions, but at its center is a hyper-accessible story that is positively Spielberg, starting somewhere near Jurassic Park as stoned teenage lovers accidentally discover a massive, shadowy corporate conspiracy to capture mythological beasts: cryptids. 

Finally, I sign off reiterating an important update. Beginning Friday, September 10, Ragtag Cinema will require proof of full vaccination (a physical card or a digital copy), or a printed negative COVID test taken within 72 hours of the event (regardless of age). We believe that the only way forward for entertainment and shared experiences is through public health efforts. We’re also proud to be joining our neighbors at The Blue Note and Rose in this commitment to our staff, our guests, and the city of Columbia. Questions? Read our full policy here.