Category Archives: Movies

Cardcaptor Sakura 【HD Rewatch】 THE MOVIE

Diabetes on the big screen... remastered!

Sakura goes to Hong Kong!

When we last left off on my rewatch-blog of Cardcaptor Sakura, the first season of the series had concluded with Sakura enjoying her final moments of Christmas day.

In the original television broadcast of Cardcaptor Sakura, the anime was put on-hold until April 6, 1999 for its second season. Gekijouban: Cardcaptor Sakura didn’t premiere in theaters until after the second season had ended and Sakura captured all the Clow Cards (the movie premiered in theaters on August 21, 1999). However, the plot of the film clearly takes place around/between episodes 35 and 36 (it’s winter vacation in Tomoeda and Meiling is still around), so for the purposes of the re-blog, I’m placing it before the second season.

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A Lookback on Grave of the Fireflies (animated film)

They're happy in heaven

There’s this one anime film that never fails to be very powerful for me, and even though it’s really good and totally worth watching again… it’s sort of hard for me to revisit even when I want to. This film is none other than Studio Ghibli’s Grave of the Fireflies. I’m sure many of you reading this have watched it too and have also shed more than a couple of tears by the end of it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not that much of a crybaby that I’m scared of revisiting the emotional experience. But even though I can go back to animated films that thrive on making its viewers shed manly tears (like the western animated film, the original The Land Before Time), Grave of the Fireflies doesn’t just invoke feelings of depression onto the viewer, it thrives on irritation as well.

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Rurouni Kenshin: Tsuiokuhen Manga/Anime comparison (term paper by Johnny Nguyen)

Balls to the wall academic chinese cartoons

Wassup everyone. As I’ve stated here, I’ve been taking a Japanese Animation class this quarter at my community college, and as the quarter is coming to a close, there’s so many final assisgnments that I have to do. For Japanese Animation class, I have to write a term paper regarding one of the animated features we’ve watched in class. The topic I chose was a literary comparison between an adaptation and its source material, and since I’m a lazy man, I chose something I’ve seen/read a dozen of times and know by heart to save me the trouble: Rurouni Kenshin. To be specific, the first OVA.

And I’ve decided to post it here as well, because it seemed like it would make a good anime review for the blog. Note that since it’s supposed to be five pages long and I tend to be total poop when I’m writing under academic conditions (c’mon, everyone procrastinates on their homework!), it may seem a bit rushed in places.

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Academic Anime Watching

Being a student this quarter is not suffering

Image Credit: タカはん from Pixiv

As some of you might already know from my Twitter, this week already marked the start of Spring Quarter over at my college institution. I’m taking three courses this quarter: one art class, one Japanese language class, and one Japanese Animation class. I’m not a film major (though I admit that such a thing isn’t anything unbefitting for me), I’m majoring in Graphic Design (getting both the AA and the BFA degree) and minoring in World Languages and Literatures (Japanese) + transfer. My reasons for taking Japanese Animation is simple: I needed a class to fill up time and the 12-unit minimum for Financial Aid, and what better than a class that’s fun and interesting, and most importantly, relevant to your hobbies? It’s anime, yo. Though since it’s academic, we’re not watching anything mindless like, say, some moe harem.

The best part of this [once a week] class is that most of its four hours is spent watching fantastic and influential anime films and discussing the aspects of each film, such as the narrative, how it relates to the context of the historical period, and the art form on a critical and analytical level. There’s a list of films we’ll watch over the course of the quarter on the class syllabus they handed out to us, and damn is it a good list, though I’ve already watched a handful of them! The first day, we watched two segments of The Cockpit and Panda! Go, Panda! The Rainy-Day Circus.

Along with the stuff I said I was going to get around to doing in Sakura’s birthday post, I’ll most likely write about the films we watch in class at least once a week. Even though I already reviewed some of them, it’s nice to revisit stories every now and again and share updated reactions. There are also essays to be expected for this class, and I will most likely post them up on here too (with bold markings of my name and class info so I don’t get reprimanded for plagiarism even though it’s clearly my shit).

It’s a really fun and engaging class, though of course there was clearly a Kill la Kill fanboy among us in the classroom, who also annoyed me by calling a deep and realistic character “flat and boring” (but I digress). To be frank, I love all of my classes this quarter! This is what college is all about. Focusing on your major/minor and taking classes on subjects you love. Oh yeah, and debt, but that’s besides the point (and I’m still in junior college for another year or so, I haven’t run into that much yet). Good thing about this quarter too is that it’s spring, it’s hot, and a bunch of cuties are running around right now and holy shit I think I’ll will find time for a relationship adadfak.

Takanashi Rikka Kai: Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai! Movie

Nasty

“Dark Flame Master’s Secrets of Kissing 101” O3O

You’d think seeing a Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai! movie would be somewhat of a hyper experience. And yet there isn’t really anything much to say about this film. I mean, aside from the really amusing introduction scene with Rikka’s “dream wedding”, and of course, the last bits of the film, I found myself almost being put to sleep while watching… because it’s a recap of the first season. Like, it’s not even a retelling of the story, it’s really just Rikka recounting the events from the television series in her head. I really don’t understand how anyone could have thought a glorified recap episode would be fit to be shown on the big screen, but hey, I’m not KyoAni. They might be geniuses and I might just be a moron who has no taste in cinema.

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Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie [Shinpen]: The Rebellion Story

Being a magical girl is still suffering

The suffering continues…

My interest in actively discussing Puella Magi Madoka Magica died down significantly during the past couple of years. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the original anime series and enjoyed watching both of the Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Beginning Story and the Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Everlasting Story films, but I wasn’t a crazy enough fan for the series in the vein of, say, Neon Genesis Evangelion that I was super excited with seeing the same story played over again. Especially since (for example), unlike Rebuild of Evangelion‘s constant divergences that make it clear that it’s a new story/continuation, the first two Madoka movies were just recaps of the same 12 episodes of the anime series. There was nothing really new to talk about aside from the spin-off materials, so the wait for Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Rebellion Story was killer because I really wanted to know what was gonna happen after the TV anime’s conclusion.

That said, I was really excited to see this film. Partly because (again) “YAY, NEW MADOKA CONTENT“, and also, I had this feeling that Gen Urobutcher wasn’t exactly finished messing with the audience. I’ve described the original anime as a series with no shock absorbers, and I went in expecting this to be the same case. I thought I was prepared for the inevitable shock, whatever it was.

But I was wrong. I let my guard down. 「残念だったね。」

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Rurouni Kenshin (live-action film)

My oath not to kill... my sakabatou!

My promise not to kill… This is my sakabatou!

I haven’t been posting because of the flu – I’ve had hellish nights during the past weekend.

I’m feeling better though, and no flu can possibly stop me from finally getting around to watching the Rurouni Kenshin live action movie. I was certainly hyped for this movie and I honestly lost my patience waiting for an eventual American screening – so I simply grabbed the Japanese Blue-ray and watched it anyway. Hell yeah!

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12 Days of Anime, Day 7: We Gotta Power

Ooooo 7 days oooooooo

Image Credit: yinxisan from Pixiv

Twenty Twelve’s been a great year when it came to nostalgia. At least for me, anyway.

There certainly seems to be a good amount of revivals and look-backs for me to talk about.

On the seventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

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12 Days of Anime, Day 6: I got 99 problems, but a witch ain’t one

99 problems but a witch aint one

I’ve grown to realize that some of my favorite anime/manga are the type of stories that present themselves as being tied to a particular genre… and then quickly go on to establish themselves as subversions to every trope associated with the genre.

That isn’t to say that all shows that fall into this category are qualified to be counted in my favorites, but twists and surprises like that certainly help an anime stand out.

On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

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12 Days of Anime, Day 1: The Return of a Ronin

Sakura wishes you a Merry 12 Days of Anime... it'll be her turn soon!

Image Credit: juria from Pixiv

A little less than seven years in the blogosphere and this is actually my first time taking part in a “12 Days of Anime” post-spree, a project in which bloggers recount memorable moments related to anime either this year or in general. I decided to do it about 2012. I’m pretty excited about it, mostly since I don’t really physically *celebrate* any holidays outside of buying one or two gifts before Christmas Day comes around… and taking a break from school.

I was originally planning on doing this when the REAL 12 Days of Christmas began (which is Christmas Day), but then I saw everyone else start doing it today. So, I figured, I was probably planning on doing it wrong, somehow…

Any-who, let’s get the holiday season started. *calls the Christmas Carolers*

On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

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Perfect Blue – Review

Don't let the smile fool you, she doesn't want to do it

If anyone were to name a significant lost for the anime industry, Satoshi Kon would be one of them. I still hold onto the idea that his Paranoia Agent remains one of the best anime that has aired on television. He was just one of those directors that constantly proved again and again that anime isn’t just for children through his own works that showcased a blend of psychology and societal problems – they should easily be considered some of the best Japanese films in general, not just animated. Right up there with the likes of screenplay writer Chiaki J. Konaka and director Hideaki Anno in terms of quality work in anime.

To honor this man, let’s look into one of his first and best works – Perfect Blue. A psychological thriller flick that delves into sense of identity, losing your grip on reality, as well as the stressful and paranoia-fueled “dark side” of celebrity life.

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Ponyo on the Cliff (movie)

Ponyo, the little girl with a round tummy

Ponyo, ponyo, ponyo, little fishy in the sea~

I finally got around to watching Ponyo. Hands down, one of the cutest Hayao Miyazaki films I’ve ever seen.  It’s not the best of his films, but it still has his special magical touch and is certainly worth a watch, especially when you have your little sister by your side. =)  Plus, the ending theme is cute and catchy at the same time (and not in an annoying way)! It’s a superb movie that’s appealing to all ages and you’re a jerk if you don’t watch it.

Toy Ship - Double Meaning btw

I loved Ponyo and Sousuke’s friendship throughout the movie. Definitely one of the cutest toy ships I’ve ever seen (both figuratively and literally). <3

.hack//G.U. TRILOGY (movie)

.hack//G.U. TRILOGY

What can I say? The cellshaded, video game-like animation in this movie was awesome. Along with the superb direction of fighting choreography, the action in this movie was absolutely kickass. To tell the truth, if it was just another run-of-the-mill, hand-drawn, and digitally colored anime movie by Bee Train, I wouldn’t have payed attention to the action as much as I would’ve payed attention to the can of coke I was drinking to pass the time, thinking: “When the hell is this shit going to be over?” The anime portion of the .hack franchise has always took a nice direction in character development, but certainly not the action (count on the games to take care of that). This movie was a great balance of both, and it was really like watching a video game. Great graphics, good eye-candy.

Unfortunately, watching a video game and playing a video game are two totally different things. When taking the G.U. games into account… I honestly don’t know if I should really recommend this movie to anyone.

Haseo is constipated
SKEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEITH!!! KOTAIRO, TRIIIII-EDGEEEE!!! *insert epic explosion* *plop* … Shit.

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Shakugan no SHANA – Movie

Shakugan no Shana - Movie

The movie is basically an AU movie (in contrast to what people first thought was a sequel to the first season), giving an alternate ending to the first arc of the anime (which, in my opinion, how they SHOULD’VE ended it) – though it was really tedious going through the same scenes we’ve already seen in almost more than half of the beginning of the movie. Nevertheless, the movie’s good for those who want to start with the second series and don’t want to bother going through the first one to get the premise of the show.

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