Kids will probably adore the colourful clay figures and spectacular action sequences of this technically remarkable animated feature, but its relentless imagination will be best appreciated by adults. Born in 1835 (year of a visit by Halley's Comet), Twain prepares for death and reunion with his late wife by steering a bizarre balloon to meet the comet on its next appearance. En route, stowaways Huck Finn, Tom Sawyer and Betty Thatcher listen to the writer's fantastic fables as Vinton's sophisticated claymation puts characters and loations through strange metamorphoses to sometimes alarming, always amusing effect. Behind the laughs and lovely visuals, however, lies an astute acknowledgement of the author's embittered duality: the kindly Southern patriach is shadowed by a darker double, and for once the Twain shall meet - at the moment of death. In paying tribute to a man of originality, compassion and intelligence, Vinton has adopted those very qualities himself.
Cast and crew