By Andrew Osmond.
So begins the video talk by director Satoshi Kon included on the Perfect Blue Ultimate Edition. Recorded around 2007, the video shows Kon looking back a decade to his directorial debut, giving his interpretation of one of the most-analysed anime ever. Continue Reading
Well, well, well.... we bet you weren't expecting this piece of news! Today we're excited to announce that for a limited time we are now taking pre-orders at our AllTheAnime.com online shop for the shiny upcoming Japanese Limited Edition set of Love Live! Sunshine!! The Movie: Over the Rainbow.
Now to be clear from the outset, this is not an All The Anime / Anime Limited product. This is a Japanese release, what we refer to as an "Import" product, that we taking orders for at our shop; once the stock is delivered later this year it will be shipped accordingly.
(If you've been following our activity at our online shop for a while, you'll know we periodically get the chance to offer similar sets relating to Mobile Suit Gundam, the most recent endeavour in that field being the film Gundam NT, though that pre-order period has ended.)
We are taking orders for the Love Live! Sunshine!! The Movie: Over the Rainbow [IMPORT] set from right now until 5pm (UK) on Monday 17th June 2019! Not only do we have the import release itself, but also a bundle with a plethora of additional bonus items too!
If you're a Love Live fan, read on below for all the details.
Synopsis: "Aqours reigned over them all in Love Live, the last where they would be representing as students of Uranohoshi Girls’ High School in. Its first- and second-year students are now preparing for life at their new school – only to face a litany of unexpected trouble! Most alarming of all, the third-year students have set off on a graduation trip – only to go missing! As the group’s members drift apart, they quickly realize just how much they meant to each other. What will Aqours do to compel themselves to take that next step forward?
The shine they seek is just ahead, in this inspiring live-entertainment movie dedicated to everyone taking flight toward a new future!"
You can watch an English subtitled trailer for the film (originally published by Madman Entertainment in Australia) below:
Well first of all we once again need to stress that this is not an AllTheAnime / Anime Ltd. product.
This is a Bandai Visual product from Japan that will be shipped once stock arrives at our office in Glasgow, UK. (Expected to be early August 2019.)
This is a pre-order scheme in conjunction with Bandai that allows fans in the UK, Ireland and Scandinavia the chance to pre-order this product knowing it will be shipped by us from the U.K once stock has arrived.
The deadline to pre-order is 5PM (UK time) on Monday 17th June 2019.
Each order will also be shipped by the courier service UPS - this cost is already included in the price you pay at our online shop. So you'll be able to keep track of its delivery progress too once it's shipped.
Some important things to note -
Additionally, the bundle we're offering with the additional bonus item set, as well as all of the above you'll also receive
Additional notes relating to the product in general:
At our AllTheAnime.com online shop! A reminder that pre-orders for this are open now and close on Monday 17th June 2019 at 5pm (UK). Click on the link below to order yours.
Chances are some of the information below have already been covered above, but we like to compile things into one section -
Little demons in the UK, Ireland and Scandinavia, you can pre-order your copy today from AllTheAnime.com HERE. It's the future, zura~!
By Meghan Ellis.
The colourful romp that is K project’s first series is a tough act to follow. But K: Return of Kings takes the task seriously, continuing the story from prequel movie K: Missing Kings and moving the conflict of the universe into its second stage. And with this escalation comes a bigger understanding by studio GoHands about what makes this world of giant swords and errant gangsters great – it has, and will continue to be, the sheer spectacle of it all. Return of Kings builds on everything the first series introduced: the visual storytelling and frankly obscene use of colour; the gangs who share fashion, attitude, and fighting style; the unashamed use of CG that somehow just works. Continue Reading
Kazuo Koike, who died on 17th April, was a man of many names. Born Yuzuru Tawaraya in what is now Daisen, Akita Prefecture, he died as Seishu Tawaraya, a Buddhist name, and wrote song lyrics as Fumihiko Azuma. But as a writer, it is the Koike pen-name that found him the greatest fame, in a career spanning four decades. Koike’s career as a lyricist was less widely publicised, but in that mode, he wrote the words to the theme songs to several iconic shows, including Mazinger Z, Great Mazinger, and Science Sentai Dynaman. Continue Reading
By Andrew Osmond.
It’s been a long wait, but at last it’s time to return to the adventures of the time-looped teen hero Subaru with the second volume of Re: Zero. If you’ve not heard of it before, its high concept is Sword Art Online meets Groundhog Day, and you can read more in our previous article here. The comments below include spoilers for the first volume, so be warned.
When we last left Subaru, he had just returned to the Royal Capital – the setting of his first adventures – along with the half-elf Emelia and everyone’s favourite demon maid Rem. While Subaru is theoretically healing after the last few battles, he can’t leave Emelia alone and ends up blundering into the ceremony where the candidates for the royal election – Emelia included – are being nominated.
One tip: it’s well worth re-watching part 12, which was the last episode on Volume 1, which sets up this story arc. The same episode introduces several characters who’ll be very important in what’s to come, including Wilhelm, a gentlemanly old knight, and Julius, a younger knight serving a rival royal candidate.
A very short way into the second volume, while we’re still at the ceremony, Subaru ends up in a confrontation with Julius. Some would see it as a duel of honour, others might call it dick-measuring. It may seem trivial compared to what Subaru has been through previously, but it escalates catastrophically. The situation brings out a nastier side of Subaru’s character than anything we’ve seen before (in earlier episodes, he seemed far wittier and more personable than the average anime hero).
Soon there’s a furious, ugly confrontation between Subaru and Emelia, who literally turns her back on him. From there, things just get worse, and worse, and worse. Increasingly angry and boorish, Subaru is woefully hopeless when new dangers threaten his friends. His downward spiral becomes a plunge to madness, as he time-loops repeatedly, seeing worse horrors with every cycle and growing still more pathetic. Rarely has a hero fallen from grace so fast.
This volume is a very different watch from the first, and much riskier conceptually. Seeing Subaru fail and fail and fail again – there are whole episodes where everything he does is plainly wrong – can be deeply frustrating, even with all the viewer goodwill built up by earlier episodes. Some fans will see it as plain trolling, and be inclined to drop the show. We won’t spoil much, but things do change eventually, and the show will make another huge shift in tone and tempo. There are rewards waiting for the audience, but Re: Zero insists that they’re earned.
Very obviously, the show challenges the whole idea of the hero fantasy and the hero’s journey. One pivotal episode – in fact, the key episode of the whole volume – is mostly just a verbal fight for Subaru’s soul, which is conducted entirely in dialogue between two of the key characters. As a concept it has echoes of the infamous TV ending of Evangelion, with Subaru as a Shinji substitute, but it’s also far more romantic.
Subaru is mostly kept apart from Emelia in this volume, in ways that become horribly extreme. The device recalls less Shinkai’s anime about separated lovers, and more a classic British science-fiction novel, The Separation by Christopher Priest (author of The Prestige), where two brothers are forever parted by maddening shifting realities.
In Emelia’s absence, Rem often takes the centre stage instead, replacing Emelia in the hearts of many Japanese fans. No doubt her blue hair and cute maid outfit helped, but so did her rather extraordinary character arc. As the blog’s previous article on Re: Zero pointed out, there aren’t many anime characters who can kill the hero slowly and brutally in one timeline, then makes heartbreaking sacrifices for him in others.
In Japan, Rem topped one of 2016’s polls of best female characters in Newtype, beating Mitsuha from Your Name. (Rem was also the subject of a bestselling hug pillow, but we’ll skip over that.) Her success probably benefited Japanese voice-actress Inori Minase, who’s enjoyed several plum roles since in anime, including the Asperger hacker Ami in Lupin the Third Part 5, and the bubbly girl lead of A Place Further than the Universe.
This volume of Re: Zero also boast especially good heavies. There’s a monster that we’ll leave you to discover (it’s big and it flies). But there’s also Betelgeuse (aka Petelgeuse), a finger-crunching death cultist who can be described as a satanic evangelist tripping on an acid ocean. His name may be a nod to Michael Keaton’s old zany Beetlejuice, but his floridly-written ranting evokes the grotesque opulence of Mervyn Peake’s Gormenghast books.
By the way, the madman’s ear-aching histrionics are provided by Japanese actor Yoshitsugu Matsuoka, who’s rather calmer in his best-known role, Kirito in Sword Art Online. Time loops can make people change in the most extraordianary ways…
Andrew Osmond is the author of 100 Animated Feature Films. Re: Zero 2 is released in the UK by Anime Limited.