Anime Weekly Report is a list of animes that I’ve watched for the week. This is my first list.
Week 1: November 7 to 13
1. Perfect Blue
A 1997 psychological thriller by the late great Satoshi Kon (Millenium Actress, Tokyo Godfathers, Paranoia Agent). I’ve seen this movie before when CD was all the rage and DVD was a luxury.
Mima was a pop idol, worshipped by the masses until fashion dictated otherwise. In order to salvage her career, she is advised to drop music and pursue acting. A soap opera role is offered but Mima’s character is less clean cut than desired. Regardless, she agrees and events take a turn for the worse.
She begins to feel reality slip, that her life is not her own. She discovers (imagines) her identical twin, a mirror image that hasn’t given up singing. Internet sites appear describing every intimate detail of her life and a figure stalks her from the shadows.
Her friends and associates are threatened (and killed) as Mima descends into a dangerous world of paranoid delusion. She fears for her life and must unravel fact from illusion in order to stay alive. (www.perfectblue.com)
Perfect Blue is mind-boggling. Its like mahjong. You start with organized pieces that slowly become chaotic, ultimately ending in complete randomness. Then the pieces are stacked again.
2. Sword of the Stranger
A 2007 action packed anime feature film by Masahiro Ando, the key animator of Patlabor 2 and Slayers the Motion Picture.
Kotarou, a boy on the run from the royal army of China’s Ming dynasty, happens upon a wandering samurai with no name. Kotarou doesn’t particularly want No-Name’s help, but when his trusty dog Tobimaru is injured in an assault, he’s left with little choice but to hire him as a bodyguard. The two form an uneasy friendship (the kid is a total brat!), and the Chinese army joins with the local feudal lord to pursue the boy, with the intent of using his blood to create a medicine that would grant eternal life. The battle heats up when No-Name has to battle some of China’s strongest warriors, and in the process, tries to overcome the guilt of a past he’s left behind.(www.animenewsnetwork.com)
The greatest strength of this movie are the action scenes. Bourne-like camera angles, shots that are in constant motion and amazing choreography and fight scenes animation. Its weakness, as with most action animes, are the slow-paced, relaxed scenes which have sloppy animation.