We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.

When you think of children’s cartoons, post-Impressionism is not the first style that leaps to mind. Yet in Jacques-Remy Girerd‘s second feature film, the exquisitely animated Mia and the Migoo, Van Gogh is a prominent visual influence. The hand-drawn animation’s use of both pencils and watercolors offers intensely colored, blurry-edged backgrounds and surprising character shapes.

The plot follows young Mia as she searches for her father and stumbles into the strange and enormous Migoos, who happen to guard the source of life in the universe. It’s a man vs. nature premise that’s been explored before, but the film’s own unlikely quirks and outstanding artwork maintain interest throughout, even when the action lags. For creative kids with an unusual eye, the film is a definite must. For anyone else fascinated by strange stories and stranger animation, it’s a fine enough treat. The movie opens today at Avalon Theatre, and all of the proceeds go to benefit the Earth Day Network‘s Canopy Project.