Posts Tagged ‘ anime ’

Your Name (2016)

YourName

About 2/3rds genius and 1/3rd melodramatic, but the brilliant stuff is so brilliant, it’s easy to dismiss the rest. Fantastic, original story that asks and answers and surprises at every turn, and such astounding visuals, stuff that gets burned into your brain long after you’ve watched it. And a perfect ending, one of the best I’ve ever seen. Hand in glove perfect.

Two scenes in particular have stuck with me: the one with the lead girl, Mitsuha, in the field looking up at the asteroid as a chunk of it breaks off, a moment later revealed to be incredibly important to the story and the first real clue that there’s more to this movie than meets the eye, a storytelling brilliance that goes well beyond the simple body switching story we’ve watched thus far. And the second was the wacky dream sequence after Taki, the male lead, drinks Mitsuha’s sake, which is hard to put into words but is so damn visually poetic and brilliant, with the asteroid spilling drops of water on a globe-like map of Japan. Pure filmmaking genius. Just great.

This film is spellbinding. A must watch. Yes, there’s some goofy stuff, like the music video sequences, all 80 of them, and the romance is fluffy and over the top, like a soap opera, but eh, small potatoes, I say. It’s one of the best films I’ve seen in years. It’s everything that’s great about anime, and why I prefer it in some ways as a visual storytelling tool than live action. Just incredible.

Evangerion shin gekijôban: Jo (Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone) – 4.5/5

Cool. Essentially the first few episodes of the anime series “Neon Genesis Evangelion” condensed into an hour and a half, and with improved animation and alternate scenes. Worth a watch, though you’ve been able to pretty much get the same thing in much more detailed form for the past 20 years or so.

The new features were nice. I loved the weird shape shifting triangle angel battle near the end; way cooler than the one on the tv show. Other than that, yeah, pretty much the same as the tv show. See it if you’re a fan, or if you want to be as the series is probably the best of its kind that I’ve ever seen.

Evangelion: 2.0 You Can (Not) Advance (2009) – 5/5 – “Masterpiece”

Astounding. A must see if you’re a fan of the original series, and if you’re not, you should be. Though the film, like the series, doesn’t make a lot of sense at times, it’s still brilliant and beautiful and probably one of the most creative and engaging things made since the art of visual story telling was invented.

This is cinema at its absolute best. The “Shakespeare” of our time, in many ways. The show in of itself is a masterpiece, and this is simply the second part in the four part reinterpretation of the series, with improved artwork and many changes/additional scenes.

While the first part followed the first couple of episodes of the show pretty faithfully, this one adds entirely new story elements and even a new character, and everything works extremely well, from the beautiful and hilarious scenes on the water purification vessel, to the brilliantly apocalyptic fight scene at the end between the EVAs and that weird crab skull thing, it’s all just genius. And how this movie ends is the cliffhanger to end all cliffhangers, though, if you stay until after the credits, you’re given an additional scene that perfectly prepares you for part three.

I also loved the overt sexuality of all the characters. The show was always subtle with it, but here, they go all out, sometimes for laughs, other times to really hit the eroticism home. Not that I’m complaining. Asuka has to be the sexiest female cartoon character in anime history. Just a great character all around.

And man was this violent and gory, especially the final battle at the end. There’s a great scene where an Eva or Angel loses an arm or something and the blood splatters all over one side of the head NERV honcho guy’s face, and the guy is so characteristically stoic he doesn’t even bother wiping it off for the remainder of the film. Hilarious and brilliant.

A masterpiece. Up there with End of Evangelion as one of the best things ever made, anime or otherwise. Things like this are why cinema exists.