Animated movies are always guilty of making us cry, but when it comes to Pixar films, audiences are usually sobbing before the movie even starts. The company's animated shorts playing ahead of main features are typically tearjerkers, but ICYMI, its latest short Bao just won an Oscar for Best Animated Short. Consider that an endorsement for needing plenty of tissues. In case you're overdue for a cry, here's where to watch Bao ASAP.
During the 91st Academy Awards on Feb. 24, Bao swept up the Oscar for Best Animated Short. It originally hit theaters in June 2018 as an opening short for Incredibles 2. If the idea of revisiting your favorite family of superheroes after 14 years wasn't emotional enough, Bao's story ensured that your tears arrived early. It introduced a lonely Chinese-Canadian mother trying to cope with her grown son being away from home and her supervision. When one of the dumplings she is preparing for a meal comes to life, she raises it as an actual child.
Like all kids, the dumpling wants more independence as he grows and the mother struggles in allowing him this. The dumpling's growth coincides with her actual son returning home and making peace with his own family history. Maybe it was just me, but the moms accompanying their kids to Incredibles 2 definitely weren't the only ones crying when Bao's credits rolled during my screening.
Given the short's Oscar success and the passionate acceptance speech its creators delivered, it makes sense that the current demand for Bao is high. However, you can't track down animated shorts as easily as you can find full-length movies, so what are your options if you're craving this particular dumpling? Finding it actually isn't too difficult.
Although Bao was available for viewing on Pixar's YouTube channel to celebrate its slot on the shortlist for Best Animated Short, you won't be able to find it there now. According to Romper, you can currently watch Bao by streaming it on YouTube or Google Play for $1.99. That's $2 with which I'd gladly part.
Bao director Domee Shi and producer Becky Neiman-Cobb accepted the short's Oscar during the Sunday night ceremony. Shi, the first woman to direct a Pixar short, said in her Oscar acceptance speech, "To all the nerdy girls out there who hide behind their sketchbooks, don't be afraid to tell your stories to the world." Shi based Bao's story on her own experiences as a child of immigrants, essentially meaning that, in many ways, she was the little dumpling her mother fiercely protected when she was growing up.
You can also catch Bao as a special feature on a DVD or Blu-ray copy of Incredibles 2, but I get that you may not want to bother the 8-year-old Incredibles fan in your life right now. Besides, we'd all rather cry over motherhood and growing up in private, right?
Congrats to Bao and its Pixar team. Thanks for reminding literally everyone to give their parent a call sooner rather than later.