Much like looking through a window, Iblard Jikan explores the fantastic and beautiful world of Iblard by panning through art created by Naohisa Inoue. Iblard shows itself to be nothing short of amazing and will wash serenity over your mind.
If anime was ever introduced into an arts class this would be the best anime to show to the students! This is actually the best way to descibe this anime.
The anime is divided into different acts, accompanied by a music piece selected to set the mood of each act. While you are exploring the world of Iblard Jikan strange things might happen. Big floating rocks might hover above you or flowers spring into bloom in front of you. The feeling is like you are inside this gigantic painting that comes to life.
This is not an anime for the action lovers. In this world everything has
its own time, its own rules. Watch this anime in the evening after taking a shower, with a cup of tea and with the biggest ever screen size and the best ever sound setup and you are in for a totally visual experience beyond thoughts! One of Studio Ghilibi most ambitious, and perhaps too ambitious projects to take on, but wow they do it so good!
I think Iblard Jikan deserves few words to be spent. Although it could be more properly named 'video art' rather than anime, in order not to raise flames among the conservative otaku (I can hear screams of "Where's the fuckin' plot, the fuckin' characters..?"), and even if I don't play the role of the snobbish anime viewer I understand that rating this work as anime could be confusing.
I think this is not only a gentle, good-vibration-inducing work, but also that its beauty lies in the details and the beautiful hybrid between sense of wonder and warmth: the harmony of the sound of a revolving door
merging with the soothing music (Background? Sound is a protagonist nearly as much as sight, in Iblard Jikan), the contrast between a home-like, Ghiblian scene of girls playing and pebble-Zeppelins (!) floating in the sky, the pleasure of letting the eye lose itself in the color traces, the gentle thrill of wondering what will move in the next scenery, whether a girl will fade from reality into paint or a rectangular train will come. I think this 30-minutes piece could be refreshing and new even after watching it several times.
Don't look at the vote, it's only to put a number and to note the quite sad truth that Iblard Jikan is a fish out of water among anime: it could either raise childlike wonder or be terribly boring, and it would not be difficult to label it as 'artsy' in the worst sense. But it's a splendid work nevertheless, a fantasy in the real meaning of the word.
The artistry is amazing. The movie is directed by Naohisa Inoue who did the "Whisper of the Heart" backgrounds on the fantasy scenes (which has a similar feel). His paintings commonly take place in the land of Iblard (hence the name). Since he uses his actual paintings the backgrounds look great. An additional bit of info, it looks like his technique is similar to Sachiko's in "From Up On Poppy Hill" http://www.iblard.com/english/draw.html
To give the paintings life water effects are added over and other little things, the problem is everything sticks out like a sore thumb. Also they make all the paintings move to
make it seem like you are actually in the world, but it ends up extremely clunky and flat. The animation is so distracting that I spent more time looking up the paintings than actually watching the movie.
There is no story so nothing to judge.
There are no characters so nothing to judge.
What does it take for an anime to be considered a masterpiece? A groundbreaking storyline? Extremely likable characters or maybe great humor?
Well you're not going to find any of that here, however Iblard Jikan does what no other anime has ever done that I've seen: namely tell a story completely without words. It has the most artistic visuals I've ever seen in an anime, and by miles at that. The soundtrack doesn't fall short either, as it has a full OST despite only being a 30 min OVA, and a fantastic one at that.
Despite its complete lack of concrete characters or storyline, it manages anyway.
The art itself is the story. It captivates you and draws you in. Even if noone tells you what is going on specifically, you somehow understand it anyway.
This was by far the best OVA I've ever seen, and one of the most memorable anime I can think of. You're not going to find hidden gems like this every day. If anything, I think everyone can spare 30 minutes of their lives on something artistically genius every now and then. Highly recommended.