Tezuka's 'Metropolis' comes to BD, but beware; Amazon's anime ambitions; 'your name.' shatters records; Hiroaki Samura's next story; and 'In This Corner Of The World' wins top movie honors
Miyazaki's STILL not retired; the live-action 'Ghost In The Shell' will be scored by Clint Mansell; and our first peek at the live-action 'Fullmetal Alchemist' flick.
A promising opening, an intriguing spin on an alternate version of recent history, a classy-looking production -- but it all crumbles no thanks to abysmal characterization and storytelling decisions
How to film Yoshiharu Tsuge's landmark work of surrealist comics? Leave it to master of weirdness Teruo Ishii, albeit with mixed results
Live-action adaptations of anime are arriving at a head-turning pace. Is that great news for fans, or a portent for a flood of mediocre cash-grabs to come?
There are two great pleasures in any dramatic art form — seeing something genuinely new, and seeing something not-new done so well and with such vigor that it feels new anyway. Barakamon is the second kind of story. It's retelling of that reliable old chestnut about the city slicker who heads out to the sticks for peace and quiet, and immediately finds himself at odds with the weird habits of the locals, the way the countryside itself seems to be against him, and, well, himself.
The show does three things right that are not easy to get right. It gives us a difficult protagonist that we come to care about; it's genuinely funny in ways that stem from close observation of human behavior, not presumptions about the audience's tastes; and it grows on you. And, on top of all that, it has something to say about the nature of artistic ambition, a part of it that spoke to me more personally than I originally wanted to admit.
The greatest of stories come from the simplest and most primal of concepts. A man is falsely imprisoned, but gains great power in his isolation and emerges to settle scores with those who betrayed him (The Count Of Monte Cristo); a man tries to rebel against an evil and unjust society only to find its total control of thought and deed have already accommodated his act of rebellion (1984); a man discovers no amount of material wealth and earthly power can turn back the clock on lost love and broken hearts, not even in a world that allegedly believes such things (The Great Gatsby). So it also went with Lone Wolf and Cub: A man and his son, outcasts everywhere, at home nowhere, take to the road to embody the very honor and righteousness that the system has refused them.
Earlier this year, while watching the Aoi Bungaku series of animated adaptations of classic Japanese literature, it became immediately clear they weren't even scratching the surface with the titles they'd chosen. The Manga de Dokua book series adapts both Western and Japanese literature to manga, and sports dozens of titles, many of which (Dogura Magura, for instance) would make great anime. What I'm most intrigued by, though, is the possibility of adapting things from beyond the greatest-hits or classics-illustrated lists — writings that have spunk and vivacity, that lend themselves to being extravagantly visualized. Case in point: Musui's Story.