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Best in animation at Hiroshima fest

The 11th International Animation Festival runs through Aug. 28 at Aster Plaza in Hiroshima. The biannual festival began in 1985 and regularly features the best in animation from around the world. Several films will be screened in English or with English subtitles, including the Swedish cut-up animation “Bland Tistlar,” and “Nagasaki 1945 Angelus no Kane,” a story about medics caring for atomic bomb victims. Fifty-three films are in competition for the festival’s grand prize.

One of the most anticipated films by both adults and children is French director’s Michel Ocelot’s fairy tale “Azur et Asmar,” which screened at the Cannes Film Festival this year. An entertaining and educational film, it follows the blond-haired, blue-eyed Azur and the brown-eyed North African son of Azur’s nanny, who are separated on different sides of the Mediterranean after childhood and go in search of a genie fairy.

Tickets are 1,000 yen per screening (600 yen for children aged 6-18) in advance, 1,200 yen or 700 yen at the door. A one-day pass is 2,500 yen (1,500 yen for children).

For the full schedule, visit www.urban.ne.jp/home/hiroanim