Wolf Children

Wolf Children – Rain and Snow, Both Will Bring You To This Movie

Wolf Children - Screen Shot #2

Its always nice when a show takes an unexpected turn, its even better when the story seems so generic. Wolf Children may sound like a boring expose of a really messed up set of humans/wolves, but its a lot more than you’d expect. Wolf Children was a wondrous journey through the mindset of children and their mother alike. From the normal growing up and learning to live like humans, but also the struggles of both the human and the wolf worlds as they collide viciously through each character arc. Wolf Children was a delight to watch and like most animated films, they always leave you with a thought provoking ending.

Wolf Children - Screen Shot #16A little back story about why I ended up watching this movie. As most of you all who reads this blog, would’ve known that I love any anime related content. I’ve always heard about Studio Ghibli, but I’ve never heard about Studio Chizu and as I was wondering around the studios info, I noticed that Wolf Children was being released on Blu-Ray. After looking it up, I saw that Yoshiyuki Sadamoto did the character designs for this movie, most notable for his work on Neon Genesis Evangelion. Being a huge fan of Evangelion and the character designs, I thought I’d give the movie a shot.

Wolf Children (also known as The Wolf Children Ame and Yuki (おおかみこどもの雨と雪 Ōkami Kodomo no Ame to Yuki) in Japan) is a 2012 Japanese animated film directed and co-written by Mamoru Hosoda. The film stars the voices of Aoi Miyazaki, Takao Osawa, Haru Kuroki and Yukito Nishii. In Ame and Yuki, Hana falls in love with a Wolf Man. After the Wolf Man’s death, Hana decides to move to a rural town to continue raising her two wolf children Ame and Yuki.

Via Wikipedia

Wolf Children - Screen Shot #15After securing my copy of the show (in glorious High Definition, I might add), I can plainly say it was well worth it. The show was absolute joy and it didn’t really waste any time introducing the story. As most of the story takes place after the death of the Father of the Wolf Children, it is wise to note that the story was still progressing rather well. However once that part was over, the show began to crawl slightly slower than I’d like. However, as the show slowed, more and more character development began to take place. The Wolf Children themselves were simply an adorable joy on screen. Constantly shifting between their two states (human/wolf) they would manage to brighten your day, even though your going to have a lot of questions (Like a lot of questions).

Wolf Children - Screen Shot #8The story itself, was without any real action. Honestly, I didn’t know why that surprised me. I supposed I expected a fight of some kind. It was much nicer watching Hana (the Wolf Children’s Mother) learn to take care of human/wolf hybrid children as she also learns how to live a tiny village. The show finally culminates in a a massive storm as it rips apart the family, only to bring them closer.

The character development was rather amazing throughout this movie, though it did lag here and there. Hana, having to drop out of university to care for her children, learns not only about herself during the course of the movie but also learns to be somewhat self-sufficient. Her intentions were always pure right from the start, never truly wavering. She constantly was forced to get random odd jobs, including being a wild life ranger. All to ensure her children goes to school and lives as comfortably as possible.

The two Wolf Children were written rather well. I would expect so, seeing as the story is about both of them. Ame and Yuki were lovely characters until they started to be divided across their lineage. While Yuki wanted to be more human, her brother opted to be more wolf like. This was rather expected seeing as how their characters were developed initially.

Wolf Children - Screen Shot #9

Yuki was a high-energy child who constantly ate and ran around every she got the chance. She would change over to her wolf form more than her brother and she would do it involuntary most of the time. This leads to the children’s being kept back from attending school at an earlier age. As Yuki was the older child, she learned to control her change quicker. She eventually decided to not change at all and live as a human with her human friends as she went to school.

Her brother on the other hand was always shy and closed off from the world. He remained like this most of the early part of the movie, until a near death experience changes him giving him the confidence he needed. Ame would eventual drop out of school to live on the mountains, learning from one of the older animals of the mountain.

Wolf Children - Screen Shot #6I liked the character development of this movie, it was nicely paced, though it could’ve been better here and there in regards to particular events. But overall the characters weren’t the same as they were in the end. They each grew into their respective personalities rather well.

Now on the most interesting part of this movie. The animation. Being an animation junkie, I am always looking to check out some interesting art styles. While Wolf Children didn’t have a wild or bizarre art style like some other shows, it was a much more calmer and laid back art style. The art and animation was crisp and clean and brought a feeling calmness to the show. There isn’t much to say about the animation but it was rather well done.

Wolf Children was an amazing show and certainly isn’t one to pass up. Despite being almost two hours long, the show really brings to life these characters and this setting really well, I’d recommend it.

Garden Of Words: Screenshot #029

[Review] The Garden Of Words – The Garden Of Beauty

Garden Of Words: Screenshot #032

The Garden of Words, Kotonoha no Niwa, is a feature film done by CoMix Wave Flims which was released on 31st May, 2013. Garden of Words is truly a remarkable and beautiful film. It is easily the most gorgeous piece of cinematography I have ever seen. With the backing of a very touching and unexpected plot and its following twists, Garden of Words is sure to please even the most stubborn of film fans.

I’ll start off simple, the pictures. Garden of Words is quite frankly, absolutely gorgeous. This Production Studio has truly outdone anything I have ever seen and seeing as this isn’t the first time one of their productions has blown me away (Voices Of A Distant Star), I can safely say, whatever it is that they are doing, I hope they never stop.

Garden Of Words: Screenshot #021

The animation was 100 percent fluid and well crafted. Each scene immersed you into this world and kept you on your feet with regards as what to expect, visually that is. A lot of the scenes in this movie was inspired by real life photographs, also in some places real life photographs where also imposed onto the film and then rendered. However, it was done so well that it felt as though it belonged in that world and not this one. Another major point is the rain. This movie centers around the rain, and the rain was just spine chilling. I mean when you see those droplets of water flying across the screen and falling in puddles of water and the artists were able captivate a real life-like motion for the water droplets, I feel as though it is able to really make you question a lot of what you think you know. Its just that good.

On the basis of character animation, again, brilliant. Each character was splendidly brought to life by the production and art teams. They were crafted so well, I honestly aren’t really sure how much more I can elaborate, just how amazing the quality of these drawings are.

Garden Of Words: Screenshot #005

Onwards to the actual story. The plot of this show was quite simple, on the surface.

Takao Akizuki is a 15 year old student who lives with his melodramatic mother and adult older brother. He yearns to be a shoemaker, having being enraptured as a child by a pair gifted to his mother, though his immediate friends and family think little will come from his goal.

One morning commuting to school during the rainy season, Takao opts to skip his first class and head to the park to sketch shoe designs, and encounters Yukari Yukino, a well-dressed young woman drinking beer in the early morning drizzle. They do not speak to one another, but as the rain clears she notes the school crest on his vest and decides to bid him farewell with a tanka, leaving Takao puzzled as to its origin and meaning.

[Via Wikipedia]

The truth is, this is only the tip of the ice berg. Both characters are posed with very traumatic past experiences and if the opening of this show is any indication, they are in for a lot more.

Garden Of Words: Screenshot #001

When it comes to character development, I really commend this anime. I wasn’t quite sure how they manged to get me so quickly invested in characters I hardly even knew. After all, they both were keeping secrets from the world, from each other and from us, the viewers. I really liked how quickly Yukari’s character developed. I mean for some people, it may not have appeared so, but for those who noticed the slight ticks that was evident during her conversations with Tako and the few spoken words she uttered to herself and to others throughout the show that drove her character to the point where it needed to be and it was quite a sight.

The show also feature quite a nice score. It wasn’t over powering, but it was just right. This isn’t an action oriented anime, in any way, form or shape. The nice and light pieces of music that accented the nature like sounds was just the right atmosphere. This isn’t always very easy to pull off, so the mere fact that it blended so well together was really a testament of how serious this studio takes even the simplest and subtlest matters.

Garden Of Words: Screenshot #015

I honestly don’t want to give up too much about the show, because I honestly want you all to check it out. Its a really nice heart warming story, it had the perfect ending for what was going on and how they were dealing with their issues. It couldn’t have ended any better.

I really enjoyed this show, I came for the drawings and animation, stayed for the masterpiece that was A Garden of Words. I urge you all to check it out and push this show down everybody you knows throat. Because this was a really good show. I am sure you’ll enjoy it, long time fan of anime and just some random person in the interwebs. You’ll love it.

See Copyright Information: Garden Of Words – Image Copyright Information

 

Review – Bleach: Hell Verse

Bleach: Hell Verse Screencap #8

I’m a big fan of Bleach and over the years I’ve tried my best to keep up with all the latest Bleach-related stuff. Recently, since the discontinuation of the anime, I came across a very good copy of Bleach: Hell Verse as well as the other movies, but the others really aren’t worth mentioning. Bleach: Hell Verse was the best Bleach movie to ever come out of the anime studio. That’s it.

Its worth mentioning that all the other Bleach movies were nice offerings, but to me, they all lacked something that Bleach: Hell Verse somehow manged to get right. Among those things, the fluidity of the animation was impressive, though similar to previous, it was actually much better than the others, but on the more important things.

Bleach: Hell Verse Screencap #5

The plot line for this movie felt more like an entire arc rather than a singular movie. At times it felt like the plot was moving fast, but seeing as the studio had to pack pretty much an entire arc into a movie, it was pretty understandable. With respect to the plot feeling like a arc, I believe this was a right move for the sake of the movie. It took what was great about the Bleach anime, the glourious over the top fight scenes, the inclusion of violent monsters, additional power sets. As I said before the plot of this movie was jaw dropping, how it was put together, how the scenes progressed from one to next.

Character development was much better than the previous movies and personally, I’d like to say thank god, Rukia actually did something this time around. The movies before she didn’t do much, so that was a nice addition. As with the actual anime, Ichigo‘s personality took dive and he came back out with some serious formation of thought after, like he usually does. The development of the character interaction between Ichigo and cast was very good. You could really feel it this time around. Since the movie feels like an arc, this would actually be very well done.

Bleach: Hell Verse Screencap #2

This time around the fight scenes got a major overhaul and by that I mean, we actually get some insane fighting. We’re talking until death fighting. Well seeing as there in hell and all, that’d be expected. The fight scenes were crafted well, not only for Ichigo, but also for his friends, Rukia, Renji and Ishida. Each got their own opponent and their own chance to prove themselves. Just like in the anime they also got a big theatrically finale for each of their individual fights, much like those in the anime.

By now you can clearly see that this should’ve been made into an arc, rather than that stupid Bout arc. However from just watching this in my own home, I would’ve loved to actual sit in a cinema to watch it.

As for the soundtrack for this movie, I love it. From the hardcore stuff from the man TM Revolution himself to the brilliantly done orchestral pieces, Bleach has become known for.

At this point you fully understand that I am endorsing this movie to the fullest. So if you can’t watch it, well watch it. Seriously, I really do recommend this movie, to both Bleach fans and anime fans across the board. This is truly an eye opening, well thought out offering the studio, that I am sure everyone will love.

Dusk Maiden Of Amnesia (Tasogare Otome × Amunejia) – What A Maiden!

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia - Screen Cap #5

For those of you following me on twitter, well you’d know nothing, considering I didn’t tweet about this particular anime. Dusk Maiden Of Amnesia (Tasogare Otome × Amunejia) was a better anime than I expected. It was filled with a lot of heartbreak, weird angles, and most importantly, tons of horrifying moments, despite the anime being mostly funny and romantic. Indeed what a maiden was this anime.

The anime is about a high school student, Teiichi Niiya, who while exploring, discovers a girl by the name Yuuko Kanoe who reveals herself to be a ghost. The entire anime (twelve episodes) revolves around Teiichi attempting to find out more about Yuuko’s past and why she remains on earth, oh and Yuuko has Amnesia and forgets a lot of stuff all the time.

The anime itself, is quite well done, the original manga was published by Square Enix and serialized by Monthly Gangan Joker and the anime Adaption was done by Sliver Link.

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia - Screen Cap #7

The anime while only spanning tweleve episodes, was packed filled with many twists and turns. Despite any movie-goer or anybody who watches tv, being able to decifer the entire story line by episode 4 or 5, the anime still manges to keep you hooked on it. The anime was able to portray a very uneasy tone throughout the series, which was quite odd since most of the anime was revolving around Yuuko and Teiichi’s romantic interest in each other and Teciichi over coming his shyness to admit his feelings for Yuuko and eventually willing to do anything it takes to be with her.

Throughout the anime you would get these thirty or forty seconds of pure terror being fed into you, which is then immediately juxtaposed by a very loud, over the top, comedic gesture by the anime’s cast. These can be attributed to amazing directing and production on the part of the anime studio. Not many studios can emulate such fear into the viewer so quickly and then disperse it even quicker. This was amazingly well done, such scenes would creep up on you without so much as a warning, or a how’d you do, for that matter.

The anime also shows how people attribute ghost stories, how quickly rumors spread and how it is changed.  The anime debunks alot of ghost stories despite it being a ghost story. Needless to say the ghost stories inside of this ghost story is, I believe, a parody of most ghost stories.

The entire cast is constantly four people, Teiichi Niiya, Yuuko Kanoe, Momoe Okonogi and Kirie Kanoe. Each person other than Teiichi and Yuuko played an important part in developing the character of Teciihi, to the point where the plot required him to. Momoe, is a very wild sprite, despite her inability to see any ghosts (Yuuko in particular), she is actively responsible for finding out more about rumors and stories that may pertain to Yuuko. Kirie shares quite a connection with Yuuko, despite Kirie also being able to see both Yuuko and something else in the school.

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia - Screen Cap #6

One of the biggest flaws I had with this, was the love interest of the entire cast. All of the females in the anime seem to be fixated onto Teiichi, despite knowing of his interest in Yuuko. I honestly felt like this wasn’t very good to the character of Teiichi or to any of the girls, though  I understand that by doing so, the writer was able to show the real connection between Yuuko and Teiichi.

As for the actual plot, it was simple, but very intriguing. You could’ve figure out the entire plot from just a few episodes, I found as though there weren’t enough plot twists and it was pretty linear. You knew exactly where everything was heading towards. Despite this however, as you approached the very end of the series (the last couple episodes) a couple interesting parts of the plot keep you invested. Also there was a couple of different things that each character goes through that could be very important. (Actually it is, and it is a spoiler so I stop here.)

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia - Screen Cap #1

The anime felt casual at a lot of places, yet at the same time it felt very deep, I honestly believe you can classify this as some sort of psychological thriller, or something along those lines. It had a lot of scenes that were pretty unbelievable. Again I draw reference to the fact that this anime pretty much fucks with your senses throughout the show, sending you down roads that go no where but then end up somewhere.

Overall the anime was well done, it had a lovely sense of romance and a brilliant terrifying atmosphere that gave the anime creditability. The connection between the leads where quite well established and it was truly felt in the shortness of the series. For anyone who loves a good scare and some good romance, this one is quite a pick up, I can be sure you’d enjoy it.

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Light And Ryuk 2

Death Note – The Final Move, The Final Note

Light And Ryuk

For those of you following my twitter, Yes I am that interesting. You all would’ve noticed by now, that I have been watching the Death Note movies. Now having heard about the anime, from pretty much every single human being on the goddamn planet, I decided to take a peek at it. But when I saw that Death Note had a live-action movie, I had to sink my teeth in. Now originally I was confused as to why Warner Brothers was funding the movie, I thought it would’ve been a Hollywood – bang-bang, I have yo money. – But it was actually a Japanese production house who was responsible for the entire show.

Death Note (デスノート Desu Nōto?) is a Japanese manga series created by writer Tsugumi Ohba and manga artist Takeshi Obata. The main character is Light Yagami, a high school student who discovers a supernatural notebook, the “Death Note”, dropped on Earth by a shinigami (a god of death) named Ryuk. The Death Note grants its user the ability to kill anyone whose name and face they know, by writing the name in the notebook while picturing their face. The series centers around Light’s attempt to create and rule a world “cleansed of evil” as “God” using the notebook, and the efforts of a detective known as L to stop him.

Casting

Light, L And MisaThe casting on this movie was ridiculously amazing. I never thought that the casting would’ve been so well done. Ever character looked exactly as they would’ve. The casting of Light and L was brilliant to say the least. The actors, Tatsuya Fujiwara and Kenichi Matsuyama, did an absolute god-like job with respect to their roles. You felt Light’s “Call For Justice” and you saw L ambition. The supporting characters were all well done. Much props the Takeshi Kaga who played Light’s father, he did a great job. The girls, Erika Toda and Hikari Mitsushima, I must admit were better than I thought. Upon seeing them it didn’t register in my brain, until their turn came to act. Although there were little hiccups from the Anime/Manga which didn’t translate to the movie. The voices of Ryuk and Rem was well done. I liked the quality they brought to the movie.

Animation

Light And RyukThe animation of Ryuk and Rem was indeed quite a view. I must admit, I felt as though both Ryuk and Rem were real people. As Ryuk truly blended in with the environment. However Rem was not given the same treatment. While with Ryuk you had to look for the pieces of him that were animated, you could plainly see the animation throughout Rem’s Animation.

Acting

As I stated in the casting portion. The acting was amazing, even the extras acted brilliantly. All of the parts of the movie that the actors had to die in, they had all acted better than I expected. For extras the parts were well done.

Music

Fuck You Warner Brothers. Where Was Maximum The Hormone’s Zetsubou Billy? Which was originally chosen as the theme song for the Death Note Anime? Why was Red Hot Chilli Peppers‘ Dani California used? Don’t get me wrong, RHCP is an amazing band, and I am a big fan. But this is a live-action ANIME Movie.

Death Note 2 Poster

Plot/Story

Mostly like the Anime and Manga. Of course they left out things. They really couldn’t pack over 10 hours of anime into a single movie. They took as much as they could. Although I felt as though they could have included more time between Ryuk and Light. Although, in retrospect, by the time you watched the second part you would’ve felt much better with the scenes you got in the first movie.

Final Thoughts.

A brilliantly done movie. And This production house should win awards in all categories. I am aware that this movie was done many years ago, but I believe it can still stand hardcore with the recent films. I would recommend this movie to any one. It was easy to follow even though it had a deep, psychological essence.

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Aquarion EVOL

Aquarion Evol – 24,000 Years Of Evolution!

Wings of Sun

So for those of you following me on my Twitter, you would’ve of seen me over these past few weeks dying on the inside from laughter because of this goddamn Anime. Having never seen the prequel of this, I was thoroughly confused. Although it was a good anime.

The story is set in the same universe as the original Genesis of Aquarion, and takes place twelve thousand years after. The protagonists live on a planet called Vega, while most of the antagonists originate from its “sister planet”, Altair. The main character, Amata Sora, a young man that has kept his ability to fly a secret since youth, meets a girl named Mikono Suzushiro, and they become fast friends. However, invaders from Altair begin large-scale attacks against Vega, forcing Amata and Mikono into a long battle for the planet as members of an organization called Neo-DEAVA. There they, along with other young men and women called Elements who also possess special powers, are recruited to pilot giant robots called Aquaria in the defense of Vega.

Amata, Caynne And Yunoha UnionLet’s start at the beginning, the beginning of this anime that is. Now I got this, because I was bored. And honestly I did expect much from it as I saw it had a Mecha. And I am a sucker for Mechas. Now the anime started off very mushy and rather slow, something that I don’t really care for, but as it turned out it played a huge part throughout the series.

Now I must praise the animation like most anime. Of course each anime has its own distinct style of animation, akin to the producers/directors etc. But the anime’s use of CGI for their Mecha’s wasn’t received well on my part. Though I loved the mecha and its abilities, CGI felt very out-of-place. Although I can image how hard it would’ve been to hand draw the Aquarion machines. But after about the first 5 or so, you forget all about the mecha.

Zessica Wong Union

The anime is very, very ecchi. I am not even kidding. There are tons of horrible puns, and bad views. Now hey, I’m a guy, and I love it, but still it was pretty overdone. Although I love Mix, (Trust me, you’ll love her too) the amount of bad puns she was given was ridiculous. I am aware of what the writers was going with this though, as the entire message of the anime is love and very serious character building. While some characters were built in about a few minutes, many characters were built over the course of the anime, and I aren’t even talking about the main characters. While I died laughing at all of the bad puns, the dialogue wasn’t that bad. I mean at times you wanted to gorge your ears out and eat them but other than that it was okay.

Mix 2Now the cast of characters is just like most anime. Nothing truly original. It could be because I have seen so many anime that I can pretty much identify what all the characters in general. Although it isn’t very clear who is who immediately and there are times were the things the main characters go through are taken to the next level. (It’s a spoiler so I won’t say too much.) The cast of characters is pretty funny, and they all interacted well (they should, it’s a goddamn anime). However, I like how the development of the characters were, as this anime focuses mainly on the characters themselves. The development was in-depth even when it didn’t mean too.

Aquarion GepardNow, this anime isn’t something for the causal Anime fan. I don’t think they would make it beyond the first few episodes, it took a while initially to get interesting, but after that it became so interesting that you  couldn’t put it down. Be wary of the inappropriate views, angles etc. Also there is a fair amount of skin, and nakedness although no type of genitalia is shown.

The anime was well done, well executed and well received. I would recommend this to my friends who are hardcore anime fans. Although if you like love stories. You’ll wanna watch this one.

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