Hello my duckies ^-^
It's been a while since i did one of these, but I have been able to catch some anime recently mainly due to Youtubes recommendation system, so YAYFACE. Also three cheers for dubbed anime :3
But to start with I wanted to review an anime movie that i was going to do WAAAAAAAAAAY back when it came out, but I got distracted.
So lets go go! As always it's five
's for a great show, one or none for a really BAD show XD
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Borrower Arrietty/The Secret World of Arrietty
Yes this review is a little late, but since Disney had recently gone to town on this movie I felt it wasn't too late to make my pointBased on the classic Mary Norton childrens book the Borrowers, Arrietty and her mother and father are part of a race of little people (Borrowers) who live under the floorboards of an elegant country cottage. Their name comes from their habit of 'borrowing' items from the big people (humans) who live in the house, little things that humans won't miss but that the Borrowers need to survive. Their life is secretive and peaceful until Arrietty forms a strange friendship with a young boy staying with his great aunt in the cottage. Suddenly the little people's way of life is put in danger, and Arrietty must take risks and place trust in her new human friend from whom they have been hiding from for so long.
I was SO excited for this movie when i saw that the great studio Ghibli would be making it. Miyazaki's clear love of the British countryside (see Howls Moving Castle, Laputa, Earthsea) and of some of our classic fantasy stories put me in good spirits knowing that it would be a pure delight filled with colour and delicate detail. And for the most part I was right. The film is STUNNINGLY beautiful, the fine detail in all the backgrounds, the subtlety of the character animation, and the amazing lighting and layouts throughout are all tropes of a great Miyazaki film. The lush greenery, both the human cottage and the borrowers little house are so packed with detail and care that a frame-by-frame rundown would be a work of art in itself. Basically if you thought Howls Moving Castle was pretty you're going to LOVE this.
.....buuuuuut I still left the film feeling disappointed.
Why? Well despite the film being a treat for the eyes, everything else was rather a bust. The characters were lackluster, the story was rambling all over the place, and the movie as a whole seemed to be very lacking. In comparison to Ponyo, which despite a slightly more 'childish' art style, the film just had no real heart to me. In Ponyo i loved all the characters, even the bit characters with next to no screen time. I cared about the children, worried about them despite the fact that they weren't going to come to harm. The story was a little rambly but in the end the ride was totally worth it. But in this? Arrietty was by far the strongest character, but that's not saying much. Her parents roles were complete opposites (one stoic, the other hysterical), Haru was a very lackluster antagonist, Spiller didn't get NEARLY enough screentime he deserved, and any other characters were kinda forgettable.
But the worst offender had to be Sho the human boy. When he wasn't floating about the plot and generally being kinda vague and creepy he was basically being downright rude to Arrietty, and THEN turning it around to a giant 'pity-me' speech about his stupid heart condition (note this wasn't in the book at all). And he's supposed to be our hero? Some people have problems with Arren from Earthsea being a spineless little chump and a weak protagonist, but i found Sho to be far worse with his righteous attitude backed up by the 'oh he's sick we should sympathise with him!'. BUGGER THAT
The film just came off as hugely forgettable to me. Beautiful yes, but I remember being blown away by Princess Mononoke, enthralled by Nausicaa, delighted by Ponyo, amused by Cagliostro and charmed by Totoro. Arrietty had none of these qualities story and character wise, leaving me feeling very cold. It slips down on my list lower than Laputa or Porco Rosso, because at least those films had a core to them to latch onto and some redeeming and fun characters to make the ride worth it.
Oh, and while were on the subject WHAT THE HELL IS UP WITH THE DISNEY MOVIE POSTER
I mean really, in europe we had this:[link]
And in the US you guys get this:[link]
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH THAT IS THE UGLIEST POSTER FOR A GHIBLI MOVIE I'VE EVER SEEN *RAEG*
Just...UGH....look at Shos blank emotionless stare devoid of wonder or expression....and the fact he's not even looking at Arrietty >_< Loot at Arrietty's weird ass pose, is she sneaking? Walking? It's so awkward! And why the hell is Sho OUTSIDE looking in through a window?! WHAT WAS WRONG WITH OUR POSTER, DISNEY? Was it's too arthouse looking for your audience to comprehend without their brains imploding? Is that it? You got what appears to be the designers of the new Winnie the Pooh movies to put together a completely new picture for you?! SERIOUSLY?
And 'The Secret World of Arrietty'? What's up with that? i know you can't call it the Borrowers, but what was wrong with 'The Borrower Arrietty'? Do you think your audience are thickies who can't tell this and the John Goodman film apart, Disney? IS THAT IT?
Ok ok I'm done
Again I don't hate it just because it's Disney, i just don't understand WHY THEY DID THIS.
Final thoughts. if you're a fan of Ghibli I would recommend seeing this for the pure eyeball pleasuring this movie gives you, it really is a feast to behold. But for the rest of it just turn your brain off. I don't hate this film or anything, and i wouldn't stop people seeing it, but to me it didn't have the same heart and soul of other ghibli classics, and it CERTAINLY wasn't a patch on Ponyo
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Peach GirlLife is tough for Momo Adachi. While in western countries her tanned skin and light hair (from her dedication to the swim team) would be a plus, in her school she is teased about it as well having rumours about her being promiscuous floating all around her. On top of that her 'friend' Sae is the one spreading these foul rumors while playing innocent, turning the whole school on her due to jealousy. But there is hope in the form of the light of Momo's eye, the handsome Toji who she has a crush on, as well as her dorky friend Kairi who always knows how to cheer her up. However nothing is ever simple as Sae also has her eyes on Toji to spite Momo, and Kairi harbours his own feelings towards Momo despite knowing she loves another. It's all drama and love triangles, backstabbings, blackmail, guilt, love, heartbreak, friendships and madness in this one teenage girls life!
Normally i don't go for slice of life anime unless it's surreal and funny like Azumanga or Pani Poni Dash, but having the english dub on youtube made this show easy to listen to while working...and considering the animation is kinda cheap and cheerful I wasn't missing much by not watching it.
After the first few episodes i have to admit I was hooked. Momo has to be one of the most unfortunate creatures in the world. Despite being kind, pretty and likeable she's unfortunate enough to be friends with Sae, one of the most manipulative and dastardly anime antagonists I have ever seen. She's hilarious and awful, and makes the show worth watching just to see the webs she weaves around these characters.
And BY GOD do these webs get tangled o0o To be honest this show is pretty silly and revolves PURELY around the relationships Momo has with the two boys Toji and Kairi, and her flitting back and forth between both (sound familiar to anyone? *COUGHTWILIGHTCOUGH*) while she struggles with her own feelings and the machinations of Sae as well as the complexities formed by other characters including a model who falls in love with Sae, Kairi's douche brother, the girls his douche brother has manipulated and the other kids at school who pick on Momo because it's apparently the MOST EASILY LED SCHOOL OF PEOPLE IN JAPAN
Seriously, in one episode a whole lunch room of people go from being against Momo, forcing her to her knees and making her beg for forgiveness from Sae (whom she slapped for making rude comments about Kairi), to turning on Sae just a few moments later and offering a feeble 'we're sorry' to Momo to fix everything. Seriously, the citizens of Townsville were smarter than that XD
But mentioning Twilight I would recommend this anime for the HUGE TRAINWRECH OF SOAP OPERA DRAMA this anime gives us XD Seriously, if you love a good dose of 'IF YOU LEAVE ME I'LL DIE' or 'I WILL STAY WITH YOU AND MAKE YOU LOVE ME' or 'I'M GOING TO STEAL THE MAN YOU LOVE TO HURT YOU' then this anime is packed to the brim with laughs in that area. A box set of Eastenders doesn't have this much 'drama' XD Momo only stops being Bella Swan because she's actually happy and kind and doesn't threaten to throw herself off cliffs when things don't work her way, but her whole life seems to be based purely around her relationships with Toji and Kairi. There are no filler episodes explaining more of her personality outside those relationships. But her interactions with Sae make this anime worth giving a look over, if only to watch Sae squirm when her plans fall apart XD Plus Kairi makes for an interesting male character being a honest to goodness friend to Momo, and doesn't force his love on her knowing she doesn't initially return it.
In short this anime isn't AMAZING or anything, but if you're a lover of spectacle or if you like slice of life anime this would be worth a watch. However if you're like me you'll find yourself facepalming at some of the poor decisions made by the characters, and then sitting back to watch them suffer for being such idiots XD
wow, i had a lot to write for 2 anime titles
I really need to watch Only My Railgun, that series looks amazing.
MY ARMS ARE TIRED NITE NITE