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Mar 15, 2020
Mixed Feelings
In these days of heavily policed on identity politics, it is surprising to stumble upon a title which almost seems to retroactively echo it. This consideration set aside, an eccentric production design often makes for an intellectually stimulating watch. The director for Studio Sign was appointed in consequence: Osamu Yamazaki, who has captained his share of somewhat quirky projects, mostly being on the crossroad between science-fiction, horror and romance (Call me Tonight, Cosmo Pink Shock, Ankoku Shindenshou Takegami...). The statement also applies to Joker: Marginal City. sdrowkcab, down under, points out to Robocop influences, but he is incorrect. Elements staged remind more a Blade Runner ...
Jun 20, 2019
Gundress (Anime) add
Brethren... Today, we gather to give eulogy to an animation team which quit us 20 years ago, exactly.

You were barely known, Studio Junio, and yet you were the witness of a pioneering era. Under the guidance of Takao Kosai and Tetsuo Imazawa, freshly debarked of the defunct Hatena Productions in 1969, you gave a hand on successful outings as "Akado Suzunozuke" or "Hajime Ningen Gyators" for your debuts. As you went on to hold your little fort for 30 years, Mushi Productions were thriving thanks to the business acumen of Osamu Tezuka, you saw Madhouse's birth in 1972 initiated on the impulse Osamu ...
Jun 3, 2019
Among the prolific lineage of Light Novel Adaptations, there is a before and after "Shakugan no Shana". This title dramatically modeled the modern scenery of this medium, from 2005 to onwards... But what about its lesser known debuts? The most cultured elements of the community would answer that there is "Slayers" in the 90s, but they would be only half right. Although it is true that this light-hearted 'sword and sorcery' is the first of its kind to be popular in the West, a long running Light Novel was already well established in Japan: that, is Utsunomiko.
Spanning to 52 volumes under the pen of the ...
Mar 17, 2019
Grandeek (Anime) add
Mixed Feelings
Grundig? The German domestic appliance manufacturer? Ohh! Grandeek, that is right! Glad to see we will not stray too far from the animation topic. You may as well regard this title as a loose portemanteau of Grandiloquent. "If you reach and seize the hilt... then, you will be able to grasp the suffering etched within the weapon"

Lines like these make a fantasy anime's introduction grand-sounding and yet so vacuous. Indeed, Tia, the heroine, does not even need to grab the cursed sword Aihorn (whose name sounds awfully as an Engrish slang for penis, by the way) to casually interact with it, thus making her ...
Mar 12, 2019
Similar to the Japanese flag's rising sun, a sanguine star is setting upon a darkened forest of spruce. Suddenly troubling this quiet sight worthy of a naturalist etching, a shinobi bolts from within the tree line. Far from being on a mission, his endeavor is dashing to escape another ninja party, fiercely resolute to make an attempt on his life... It seems that the fugitive is facing overwhelming odds, but could it be that the prey turn into the predator, thanks to a well calculated gambit?
This immediately sets the tone of Yajikita Gakuen. One notices at once that the shadow warriors appear in their ...
Mar 6, 2019
Rokudenashi Blues, Shakotan Boogie, Taiman Blues Hen... If you take a close look at most of the Yankee animes, it seems like there is no shortage of these titles branded with music genre typology. Turning an uninterested head, video distributors never distributed completely any of these. During their heyday, little was known about their high growth character in the market, so they never knew an overseas release past an episode or two. Yet, it is not a sub-genre as monolithic as one could think, because creators may decline it enough tonally, to preserve its founding spirit while still introducing some variety: for instance, directing it ...
Feb 25, 2019
Kasei Yakyoku (Anime) add
As ever, feel free to to skip most of this review down to the last paragraph before the colophon, if you want to avoid any spoiler and just know whether it is recommended by the house.

How much sacrifice are you ready to consent in the name of love? It is a simple question Kasei Yakyoku offers to answer through the pang of four characters, during a tumultuous era of Japan. KY [thank you to banish on the recess of your mind any salacious joke in relation to a certain brand of condoms] is a original Josei tale geared around the very idea of emancipation. Indeed, ...
Dec 25, 2017
It is always tricky to find a balanced Christmas themed production to approach, all mediums taken together. For an amazing one such as "A Nightmare Before Christmas" there are plenty of atrocities creeping in the shadows like "Santa with Muscle" or "Santa & the Martians", which would make the tales of this shamelessly eggnog guzzling uncle of yours sound perfectly grounded...

There are many trends under which these belong to, split into two categories: firstly, the Western ones. They mainly attach importance to what is commonly branded as the "spirit of Christmas". They are either Family or Romance shows revolving around hackneyed themes such as the ...
Nov 10, 2017
After 180 years of discovering nothing but Terran artefacts, the Hartz Bouken Corporation found significant evidence of an alien civilization's existence. Subsequently, the next step of this rogue Research and Development company is to anticipate a third type encounter with them. In parallel, Volg productions, a documentary filmmaking group has managed to get a snap on the leaked footage of a dark-skinned, golden eyed fellow arousing interest of all parties... This summary makes for an intriguing premise. A couple of interesting themes could have been further explored such as "Is a culture unethically allowing the exploitation of Historical heritage any more worthy than the one ...
Nov 5, 2017
Mixed Feelings
Throughout centuries, China and Japan have maintained a conflictual relationship. The Middle Kingdom particularly resented for the Wokou pirating on their coast around the 16th century, at a time when it was relatively flimsy as a political entity. Later on, the World War 2 massacre of Nankin cemented this mistrust in a national scale. It partly explains how the leaders of Maoist China feel the need to establish a one-lap lead ahead of their insular neighbors. The manifestations of this mindset are, among other things, the man-made agglomerations of uninhabited islets at the coast of the Spratley. These Chinese polders are a costly, but efficient ...

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