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Sep 19, 2020
I've read reviews of this movie written by Chinese people who said this spoke to them very deeply. I respect it, because this is coming from a very specific place, but I don't relate to it for the same reason. I just don't share the context. Artistically, this is another hyper-detailed anime that mistakes fidelity for quality. It's completely at odds with my aesthetic preferences.

The first of the three shorts exist solely so they could get funding to make animated food gifs. But I found the short so unappealing that I'll probably never look at those gifs (which recycle regularly) the same again. The second read more
Sep 15, 2020
This is going to sound like a downside, but I mean it in a good way: there's nothing particularly special about this story. Its plot is completely quotidian. It progresses approximately like you expect. And that's exactly what I wanted. This is harmless romantic entertainment, and I would heartily recommend it if you just want a little yuri to veg out with.

It's also just pretty well-paced in general. It doesn't draw out their feelings in a will-they-or-won't-they. Even the lackluster parts (like, IMO, the first chapter) don't linger for too long and are ultimately fine.

I'm sure this description will turn off people who are read more
Sep 14, 2020
"What if Ponyo, but she's a vampire, and it's a musical?" I dug it. I ended up watching the dub because it was the path of least resistance, and I probably wouldn't have if I had realized just how integral the musical performances would be later on. I wish English dubs would/could put more production work into the songs. Ah well.

The visuals were very cool and emotive all throughout. It felt nice on my eyes. Like a breath of fresh air. But on my face. The cuts of dancing were a bit repetitive, but the content of those cuts was so purely joyous.
Sep 11, 2020
This was the first Lupin III thing I ever watched, like 8 years ago. I remember enjoying it a lot more then. I gave it an 8/10. Now? It put me to sleep. Yes, the animation is sporadically excellent, but I felt a lot more distance between this version of the characters and how they appear in my head. The character designs, for a start, aren't BAD, but I don't care for them. They look too cutesy and small. Goemon looks like he shrank two sizes. I also feel like Miyazaki filed off too much of Lupin's edge, which alienated him from me.

The plot of read more
Sep 11, 2020
I thought the main series was just alright. I generally watch any extra OVA episodes if that's the case. If you feel the same, I would advise skipping this.

It's a double-length episode and Part A is built around extremely racist jokes. Like. EXTREMELY. Like. Literal slave shit and rape terror shit. It's not worth it. And, like, this is the anime community, so I know there are going to be people who say it "wasn't that bad" because it was "short" or whatever. No. Fuck that. It was extremely uncomfortable and entirely unnecessary. Enough that I would reiterate that if you weren't completely sold on read more
Sep 10, 2020
I've gotta be real: there were a lot of scenes in this that were screaming "this movie looks beautiful" at me without backing it up at all. And, looking around a bit, it seems to have a reputation for its visuals. I don't get that at all. The movie was really ugly for me, from the character designs to the poorly composited set pieces. Its CG work looked particularly embarrassing.

To be fair, it was done no favors by my bad internet connection. The poor stream made it look muddy. But if it had better taste, that wouldn't have mattered.

And the story? A jumbled mess. A read more
Sep 9, 2020
It's a cute date movie, I suppose. I didn't think they did enough with the boy's character to make me root for their relationship seriously, but I did like the breadth of emotion that the girl got to display.

The main thing it made me think of is something my friend John Ohno was spitballing about one day, about how to define anime. I think there's valid clarification reasons for saying it means "Japanese animation," but even half-hearted exploration of that idea will reveal it to be a jingoistic oversimplification. One example it is oversimplified (minor among those examples) is the kind of anime that goes read more
Sep 8, 2020
The fact that the boy main character had a fear of looking people in the eyes makes me think the mangaka wrote this to be adapted to anime by Naoko Yamada. It's just too perfect. And she's just too perfect. It looks so fucking good.

Ahhh.

It's oversimplifying to say there are two main things to appreciate about the movie. There's the technical aspects, and your emotional response. Technically, this is a masterpiece of character animation. Every single conversation is just just chock full of data for you to process. It's so physical. All the character designs are expressive even without that. The colors pop against each read more
Sep 1, 2020
While watching this, I couldn't shake the thought: "did the people behind Lupin III Part 5 secretly hate Lupin III?"

On the surface, probably not. There are a lot of blink-and-you'll-miss them references splashed liberally throughout. Clearly, they have seen this show, or at least looked up all the movies and picked some characters from each to revive.

But Part 5 is just such a fucking slog with no energy at all after the first arc. I watched the first 6 episodes weekly in 2018, and I thought they were a good time then. Ami was an excellent addition to the series. Everyone played an interesting role read more
Aug 27, 2020
In the middle of watching Season 3, I started to wonder why this season wasn't hitting me quite as well as the other ones had. It's still good, don't get me wrong. It's just that, like, Retsuko is more consistently fulfilled and successful than me in this season, and I found it more alienating than reassuring. Resolving to become an idol singer was a great direction for her, personally, but it strays far from the workplace fare of the earlier seasons, and so it's less accessible. Pretty much, the same is true for Haida, who encounters a romantic foil other than Retsuko. He has no read more