Persepolis (Vincent Paronnaud & Marjane Satrapi, 2007) 
In the Pixar age, when we come to expect almost lifelike qualities in animation, it's refreshing to see something a little simpler and unique. That isn't meant to mean the new age of computer animation is cookie cutter like but there's a romantic tinge to hand-drawn animation that scores some points in my book. I feel the same way about 16mm compared to DV but that's irrelevant here. In regards to this film, Persepolis is a charming, endearing film mostly because it stands out so much stylistically. An adaptation of Satrapi's graphic novels about growing up in revolutionary Iran, the film has its stronger moments when it focuses more on history and culture than on personal memoir. Maybe because it seems so foreign to someone like me, the first part of the film, going more into a historical background and examination of the state of Iran politically is the most intriguing. The thought that the overthrow of the Shah wouldn't and directly lead to the Islamic Revolution is a fact that often gets overlooked but is a focal point to Marjane's story. When the film discusses Iranian history and culture, it is a great film. The second half bleeds into a more personal memoir, where we have to deal with Marjane and her obnoxious adolescence, with only brief moments to take us back to the culture clash which is infinitely more interesting than Marjane's all too predictable rebellion. Still, all that is not enough to keep me from recommending the film and that the film's positives really outweigh any negatives I have about it. The animation style, done mostly in black and white, is such a contrast to what is seen now that it keeps Persepolis from being just another animated film.