Peter and the Wolf

Suzie Templeton

2007, Poland


The film won the Academy Award in 2007 for Best Animated Short Film. The first frames of Peter and the Wolf are an overture that introduce the viewer to the climate and the theme of the film. We can see a small, wooden house by the forest, surrounded with a high fence, and in the middle of a blizzard. In the background we can hear wolves howling and can see a man with a gun watching out for wolves and mending the fence. There is Peter, a boy with sad face and eyes, watching him through the window. In those first film frames we also get to know the second main hero. In contrast to Peter, who is closed behind the fencing and guarded by his grandfather, the wolf wanders around the woods unhampered and enjoys freedom. The threat posed by evil people also lurks for the boy in a nearby town. Lonely Peter makes friends with a goose and a bird with an injured wing. His dream is to discover the intriguing world hidden behind the tall fence that he observes through little holes. One day he steals the key and together with his friends sneaks out to the other side where they happily skate on a frozen lake.  The grandpa is angry and takes Peter home. The boy leaves his friends by the lake to watch them from behind the closed gate with longing. He soon notices a wolf but cannot help the goose escape from his claws. Overwhelmed with pain and fury, the boy decides to face the dangerous enemy – after many attempts he manages to catch the wolf in a net. This confrontation leaves bloody scars on Peter’s face in the shape of the predator’s claws. However, Peter doesn’t allow his grandfather to shoot the wolf but he decides to sell the animal. But when he finally manages to close the deal with the circus’ owner, the hunters approach the cage. The boy recalls harm they did to him and decides to make an unexpected decision. He is no longer a shy, scared boy – his peers that bullied him in the past now look at him with respect. Peter opens the cage’s door; they eye each other up and down with the wolf and together walk past the gathered people to let the animal come back to the forest.


Suzie Templeton



Director: Suzie Templeton

Script: Marianela Maldonado; Suzie Templeton. The film is the adaptation of Siergiei Prokofiev’s symphonic fairy tale Peter and the Wolf

Cinematography: Hugh Gordon; Mikołaj Jaroszewicz

Editing: Tony Fish

Color: Color

Duration: 30’

Cast:  Puppet animation


The engaging animation with its fairy-tale atmosphere is also open to interpretation. It is a tale of growing up and the protagonist’s evolution, the strength of friendship, respect for the natural environment, as well as psychoanalytical, Jungian tale about various elements of human nature: the primeval and wild power and the way leading to its discovery and acceptance.

Both the power of the message, distinctive music as well as realistic but poetically dreamlike setting and artistic puppets create a magical atmosphere of a tale from contemporary but remote Russia. It is the atmosphere of a real fairy tale where the beauty of the story is harmonized with its noble message and can fascinate not only young viewers.

Iwona Hałgas,





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