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March 24, 2005


Yeah, I watched this the other night for the first time. It was gorgeous to look at, but reminded me of a beautiful puzzle set where the pieces turn out to be from so many different puzzles that assemblage is impossible. There is an entire course on eastern philosophy in that movie--one that, even with a graduate education, i was no match for.

A related question for the Meta-stache: what are your favorite adult-oriented animated films?

I dig the Ghost in the Shell films' style, but yeah, I was they weren't so narratively/thematically muddled.

As for adult-oriented animated films, I guess the works of Satoshi Kon are at the top of my list. I really love Perfect Blue, Millennium Actress and Paprika.

I've seen Paprika, which I absolutely loved. Haven't seen Perfect Blue & I may have seen Millenium Actress.

Have you seen The Girl Who Leapt Through Time? Its not that visually interesting, but the story & characters are great & the movie is far more emotionally absorbing than most of the remote, formally impressive anime that gets championed.

Also, what did you think of Ponyo? I know Hayao Miyazaki gets a lot of film-snob juice (as does the movie), but I thought the movie was way too literal & schematic, thus boring. Plus for a Japanese movie, its themes seemed to pander openly to white bourgeois American liberals.

Your thoughts, el hombre con bigote impresionante?

I'll have to check out The Girl Who Leapt Through Time. Never heard of it.

And shamefully, I didn't get to see Ponyo last year (I was away when it came out), and have yet to rent it on DVD. It's one I need to catch up with this year, even if - as you said - it seems to be something of a letdown.

I actually thought Paprika was way too straight forward and completely lacked the "jumbling" aspect that tends to come with dreams. No, I didn't want it to not make sense, just more complexity and external chaos to mirror what was actually happening. It was also missing a some flare/spark to really grab me.

Girl Who Leapt Through Time I found average by all means, there was nothing that stood out in it in my honest opinion. It felt like the typical anime romance with a gimmick and a higher budget, I was sort of aghast by the end of it.

I was actually really expecting a lot from these two movies and got them at the same time, and was a bit let down by both of them (actually quite a bit by the latter).

As far as GitS2: Innocence, I really don't think it's as much philosophical jargon as everybody says. Sure, my first viewing I was only able to connect about 1/4 of the quotes to the story and theme it was digging at, and on a few I felt like I was doing some personal stretching, but a few reviewing and really the only quotes that leave me dumbfounded are from the works I have never read and do are not supported enough by the context they are used in. Still, it is a legitimate complaint, but I feel the level of the criticism has been grossly over-exaggerated. I've seen a few people complain about not understanding the plot - I don't get that. I understand criticizing the plot, sure, it does not tie together well, instead of one event leading to the next and clues helping uncover the bigger picture it was more: Okay, let's do this, which definitely relates to the answer, though get no info out of it that helps us (Yauza). Then, let's go north to find a guy I already have a clue about and can track down using a random contact, but in the end we needed to storm the main building anyway. So let's go storm the main building (well, ship). It was sort of cool how actually realistic it was in that to solve cases you don't always have this nice trail of linked clues, but at the same time it did create this slightly awkward feeling. It just seemed like Batou knew nearly everything from the get-go, and events leading up to the finale were on the verge of being unnecessary. That I felt was the problem.

Just sharing my thoughts.

Aghast by Girl Who Leapt Through Time, eh? Filled with shock & horror by what is essentially a crisply-executed (if admittedly not particularly visually elegant) sci-fi fairy tale? What an interesting life you must lead, Asura!

That said, I liked a great deal of what you wrote (and wrote and wrote) here. I hope you will recommend something for me, though my own recommendations failed ya.

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