“Return to the Dream” (2012, 2005).

Info sheet:


“A horror animated tale about a lost child in a strange world of dreams. His mother is his only hope, she is going to his rescue.”

Personal comments about 2012 version:

Advice: It should be better if you own a good sound equipment before watching the 2012 version. The music and sound jobs are simply masterful.

I always felt that this shortfilm was unfinished. Perhaps due to the soundtrack, that was good but a synthesized MIDI, the total lack of cutting rhythm sense or the bad animation, but the true reason was that the original version failed at telling a clear story and was an overall strange job, despite was succesful at getting scary (like a good horror story). Six years later, I got more time perspective, saw it again and realized that the initial project was too ambitious for my abilities at the time. With a lot of experience gained over the years, I started thinking about how to enhance the original job.

A new and shorther film cutting provided a better rhythm and pace, I also solved a lot of animation failures, added a narrator voice that tells the story of the film, a new visual effects layer and a new soundtrack. After all, I can finally say that this short is finished. Seven years later. Yes now! I’m very happy with the results. This shortfilm is the same job as ever, but now got improved a lot. The original master has realized its full potential.

It was a great opportunity to learn how to wipe errors that cause a promising material not shine like it should. By the way, I finally am satisfied with the result.

Personal comments about 2005 version:

After studying at CICE in 2004, I was offered the opportunity to make a final course project with a length of one minute. As other times, I decided going further and tell a first complete animation story in order to prove myself, test my abilities and learn as much as I could.
Animation stories tend to have very similar treatments; something uncommon are animation terror plots. I see terror genre as one based more on psychological elements than on a fullness of viscera or than a course of empty tensions created by film cut and sound. If you want to feel afraid, read short tales of Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft ad other masters like them. If you want to feel more afraid, you can turn on T.V. and try understanding the society where we live. If you want to feel the strongest emotions, turn off T.V. explore your own mind, and find yourself.
The other main ingredient was the opportunity of explore dream´s world, melt it with reality and find ways of creating anguish and tension pulling everybody inner strings. That Scary-Dreamy mix is perhaps this short main value and at the same time, its bigger dead weight because damages fluent plot understanding after turning the story very metaphorical and primeval.
This short was a baptism of fire at Global Ilumination and many other 3D and Postproduction areas, which reveals itself in an irregular technical quality. Also, this project was realized under so extraordinary personal hard conditions that I wonder today how it could be finished despite all people that seemed to want to preventing it.

Always improving. The best and the worst:

  • The best: visual appeal; the story reach its main goal; make you feel anxious.
  • The worst: 2012 version resolves a lot of animation problems, but the original animation job is awful done and damages severely the story; I had learned how to animate only a few months before starting this project. 

General Info:

2012 version
Title: “Vuelta al Sueño”.
English Title: “Return to the Dream”.
Released: June 2012.
Length: 4 minutes 43 seconds.

2005 version
Title: “Vuelta al Sueño”.
English Title: “Return to the Dream”.
Released: June 2005.
Length: 7 minutes 49 seconds.

Production info:

Director: Andrés Vidal Alarcón.
Production company: Avaray Works.
Writing: Andrés Vidal Alarcón.
Art: Modelling & Animation: Andrés Vidal Alarcón.
Postprocessing & Film Cut: Andrés Vidal Alarcón.
Narrator: Sofía Comas.
Music & Sound Edition: Phillip Lazer (pseudonym).
Distribution company: Promofest.

2012 version awards and official selections:
2005 version awards and official selections:
  • Formal Experimentation Award at Interiora Festival Horror 2012 (Italy).
  • Nominated to best animation at 2012 Directors Circle Festival of Shorts (USA).
  • LONESTARCON3 Film Festival (USA).
  • 2013 Crossroads Film Festival (USA).
  • Horrible Imagining Film Festival (USA).
  • Fargo Fantastic Film Festival (USA).
  • Rock and Show 2012 (USA).
  • Phoenix FearCon (USA).
  • 8th South African HorrorFest (South Africa).
  • Festival internacional de cine de terror Aurora (México).
  • Montevideo Fantástico 7 (Uruguay).
  • Zinema Zombie Fest 2012 (Colombia).
  • Morbido FilmFest 2012 (México).
  • Feratum Film Fest (México).
  • 8th ANIMEST (Romania).
  • Anifilm 04 (Czech Republic).
  • Tolfa short film festival (Italy).
  • Interiora festival horror 2012 (Italy).
  • Festival of Serbian Fantastic Film (Serbia).
  • Underground short film festival (Ireland).
  • Orés de Miedo 2013 (Spain).
  • HUESCA, Oscar Qualifying Film Festival (Spain).
  • Festival internacional de cine fantástico de Monachil (Spain).
  • Cine Club Uned (Spain).
  • 3r. Fantàstic Gore Festival Amposta 2012 (Spain).
  • II Festival de cine fantástico de Torremolinos (Spain).
  • Mercado Internacional 3d Wire 2012 (Spain).
  • Award for the Best Animated Short Film at VII Certamen Nacional de Cortos en Vídeo “Villa de Estepona 2005” (Spain).
  • 2005 2nd Annual ION FilmFest at Los Angeles (USA).
  • Alcine35 (Spain).
  • II Certamen de Cortometrajes en Vídeo de Llodio (Cortarte’05) (Spain).
  • 24 Enkarzine (Spain).
  • 11 Concurso Estatal de “Ciutat de Valls” (Spain).
  • VI Festival de Cortometrajes Jerez 2005 (Spain).
  • 5º Concurso de Cortos Animados Comarca de la Sidra (Spain).
  • VI Certamen de Cortometrajes de Animación de Ibercaja La Rioja (Spain).
  • II Festival Internacional de Cine de Animación de Basauri (Spain).
  • V Certamen de Cortometrajes de la Falla Corretgeria de Valencia (Spain).
  • 10 Festival La Fila (Spain).
  • XXIX Certamen de Cine  “PREMI CIUTAT DE TERRASSA” (Spain).
  • MFA International Film Festival Illes Balears (Spain).
  • VII Certamen Nacional de Cortos en Vídeo “Villa de Estepona” (Spain).
  • II Festival de Cortometrajes Macondo (II FCM) (Spain).
  • I Festival Internacional de Cine de Sax (Spain).
  • IV Festival de Cortometrajes Caóstica de Bilbao (Spain).
  • Eurovideo 05 (Spain).
  • I Corto-Festival de Cine y Video “Dunas” Fuerteventura 2006 (Spain).
  • Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente de Elche (Spain).
  • Festival Internacional de Artes y Culturas Digitales de Gran Canarias.