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Angel's Review: Movies
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Posted one day ago , edited 12 hours ago

This Boy Caught a Merman, Kono Danshi, Ningyo Hiroimashita (Nov 9, 2012)
Director: Soubi Yamamoto Producers:
Yaoi, Fantasy, Romance, Shounen Ai,
Key Words:Merman,
Studio: CoMix Wave Films Licensed American Publisher: Sentai Filmworks

Time: 28 mins

Shima was a perfect boy, maybe almost to perfect. When his parents split up, both couldn’t figure out who he would live with so he ended up living with his Grandfather. During his high school year though, his Grandfather passed away. While crying near the ocean, he slips into the water and is saved by a Merman who he names Isaki and brings home. Who knew that it would lead to something a bit deeper though?


My Thoughts: A lonely boy and a lonely merman meet one cold night and soon make a lasting friendship. It’s a pretty sweet story in that regard no matter how choppy the script and imagery was. Shima seriously has an emo sad story which seemed to mess him up badly. It is almost like he wished for someone like Isaki to wash up on shore. Someone to care for him and make him not feel so alone. Someone who was a bit childish himself that could make him smile. Isn’t that what love is all about? In falling in love, it healed a wound that both of them had from being alone.

It made the story even better that they didn’t end up going into a sexual aspect. It stayed in a rather innocent level like two little kids falling for each other. Nothing out of the ordinary, nothing that went to far for a first meeting. It was just a friendship that blossomed into something more.

The animation was surprising not like any of the main stream shows. It would sometimes be choppy in the animation or very surreal with almost cut and past looking characters while other times it was more fluid. The backgrounds were so detailed and even when they went into just pen and ink designs, they would be pretty high detail for the amount of work that was put into them. Shading always had this sort of water color blotched into colors sort of look with other patterns that were like strips of cloth were glued to the art. I love how original the art style was and how different they tried to make it.

The English voices are a bit awkward with sometimes not matching up with the lip sink. They weren’t bad… just… sometimes bland.

Sorry this review is so short but there really isn’t much to talk about with this. The show was short and not much to it. It’s a great watch for how short it is though.

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My Neighbors the Yamadas,(July 17, 1999)
Director: Isao Takahata Producers: Seiichiro Ujiie, Takashi Shouji, Toshio Suzuki
Sitcom, Slice of Life,
Key Words:Family,
Studio: Studio Ghibli Licensed American Publisher: Disney

Time: 111 mins

Meet the Yamada family, Takashi the father, Matsuko the mother, Shige the grandmother, Noboru the 13 year old son, Nonoko the 5 year old daughter, and Pochi the family dog. This is the story of there every day life.


My Thoughts: This is a very different show then what Studio Ghibli has done before, talking more about a regular family and not having a continuing plot. In my mind, this could have been a couple of 15 minute shorts more then a actual movie and it probably would of done a bit better since as I watched, I became very confused. They time skip a lot making it sometimes hard to figure out where we are in the story but then there are things that really don’t need a time too.

The characters really don’t have anything that actually makes them stand out. They are just a generalization of a mother, a father, and family. There really isn’t much that goes in the sense of there own personality and that did really bother me. I wanted some substance in them, not grasping at straws to feel closer to the characters. To me, that really felt boring and it became like me trying to force myself to watch the whole thing. Normally I could actually grasp at someone in the story and relate to them like the older sibling but this one just seemed off.

The art style is very different then Ghibli’s work as well, going for pastel colors and artwork that doesn’t really fill up the whole screen most of the time. In fact, most of the border areas feel like the artwork blends off into white. It feels much like a comic strip art piece like in the paper rather then a full film. It stays mostly in the real world instead of going into any crazy ideas yet in the beginning and end has a sort of surreal look about being a family as they talk about a poem that deals with life. That was the most interesting part to me actually and it was pretty cool that they started out that strong and ended in the same manner although it made me feeling like I wanted more of that then the other real life stuff.

The English voices are really well done, adding to the whole feeling of family but I wouldn’t expect less from Disney when they get their hands on a cute little show like this. Nonoko is a very believable 5 year old and sounds so cute. The show itself takes things rather literal and I believe that is because we are in the mind of this little girl and how she sees her life. The English dub really does add to this idea that we are seeing everything from the 5 year olds aspects. Plus the fact that Nanoko does not show up all that often. There are times that it deals with her but then there are many times that it is only the parents, son, and Grandmother.

The show might have been alright but it really isn’t the best Ghibli film in my opinion. It was slow and very slice of life-ish that it was hard to watch.

Rating:

Link to Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Neighbors_the_Yamadas

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The Naughty List,(Nov 12, 2013)
Director: Gordon Crum Producers:
Comedy, Family,
Key Words:Elves, Christmas,
Studio: Licensed American Publisher:

Time: 46 mins

After two young brother elves named Winter and Snowflake mess up the Christmas tree, they are given a list of things to do to redeem themselves. Can they get themselves off the Naughty List or will they forever be considered bad?


My Thoughts: : So this has the idea that there are some elves who don’t really fit into the main group. It’s a pretty normal story for a show about Christmas. The sad part though is that there is nothing original about it. We have a storyline that picked up more on the don’t cut corners and keep to tradition which in my mind makes no sense. We are always changing tradition and even finding new ways of doing things. Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t. That’s just human nature so when I see a show that is all about doing things only one way, it makes me want to yell. So what if your different, being different makes you you. To have a show that seemed to have the attitude of being different will get you into trouble just makes me wonder what they were trying to teach younger kids. I might be missing something to the show but if I missed it and this was for younger kids, and then they would have probably missed it too.

The animation is pretty general and cartoony in the CG style. Basic textures and almost every other character besides the main characters looked the same. I mean it; all the elves look exactly the same and all the reindeer except for characters used at a special point look the same. It annoys me but since it was made for younger kids, I guess it works.

Voices are very childlike which again works for what they were going for. It’s simple and doesn’t use a lot of ‘large words’ to explain things although the arguing between Winter and Snowflake got on my nerves at times. No matter what they did, they fought. I know siblings get on each others nerves but we don’t have to listen to it all the time.

It was alright but just not my show. It really shows that it was made for younger children.

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