By Andrew Osmond.
Onward is Pixar’s twenty-second feature animation and the studio’s fourteenth original film – neither sequel nor prequel – and it officially opens in cinemas today after sneak previews last week. Like an earlier piece I wrote on Pixar’s Inside Out, this article isn’t a review, but more an “anime eye” on a non-anime film. Onward has two teen brothers who try using magic to bring back a dead parent, only for the spell to go terribly wrong. Now, why might that sound familiar to anime fans? Continue Reading
By Andrew Osmond.
Never-Ending Man is a live-action documentary film about Hayao Miyazaki, and it starts with his “retirement” announcement in September 2013, after his “final” film, The Wind Rises. Those quote marks suggest how well he stuck to his word. “I’ve caused quite a stir before by saying I’m quitting,” Miyazaki said, “so people don’t believe me. But this time, I mean it.”
For heaven’s sake, never, ever believe him. “All old directors say they’d rather make films than do anything else,” Miyazaki remarks in Never-Ending Man. “But I don’t want to make to make crap. I want to go somewhere new.” Continue Reading
By Helen McCarthy.
The Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk exhibition is impressive – so impressive that since I left the Victoria and Albert Museum I’ve worn nothing but kimono. I’m writing about it, right now, dressed entirely in kimono. Of course that’s nothing new. My crew-neck knit kimono and my straight leg Levi's stonewash kimono are my usual gear. “Kimono” is just a thing to wear – that’s what the word means.
But in academic or artistic terms, calling all clothes “kimono” is about as helpful as calling animation made in the USA with almost no Japanese input “anime.” Even the Japanese don’t call all clothes “kimono,” not any more. They call Levi’s Levi’s like everyone else – otherwise what’s the point of all that expensive brand identity-building?
The Victoria & Albert Museum is brilliant at analysing brand identities, uncovering the craftsmanship and skill behind them, and presenting them as something more interesting and significant than a logo on an expensive carrier bag. They’ve had a run of very successful blockbuster shows devoted to the houses of Balenciaga, Dior and Quant, each an object lesson in how to present art, craft and cultural anthropology. Now they show us the kimono as the house style of Brand Japan, and it’s much more than you expect. In this exhibition kimono, is revealed as classic yet edgy, elegant yet cool, historic and localised yet contemporary and diverse, a summary of the style, technique and aesthetic philosophy of a nation dancing on the edge of an identity crisis as it seeks to merge the best treasures of its past with the most marketable elements of its future. Continue Reading
Kazuya Tsurumaki on his film.
Kazuya Tsurumaki is known for FLCL, Gunbuster 2, and the Rebuild of Evangelion series, among others. He got involved with The Dragon Dentist (streaming now on All4) after meeting the original writer Otaro Maijo on Japan Animator Expo in 2014. Using the short pilot film screened at that time, this new 90-minute feature was created with additional stories and characters. Many people must have been surprised by the fantastic world of the dragon and the depiction of the dentists. We asked Mr Tsurumaki about the world of the production behind the scenes, and the must-see elements that lead into the second half of the film, which was originally broadcast in two sections. Continue Reading
It's (just over) SEVEN! weeks - see what we did there, Strictly fans 😉 - until our release of Welcome to the Ballroom: Part 2 struts it way onto Blu-ray! Admittedly this release has been in the works for a while, but it's nearly here and we've got all the details about what to expect from this release that's our on 20th April 2020!
Plus, we have a special offer on pre-ordering this (and saving on Part 1, if you don't already have that) at our AllTheAnime shop to tell you about as well.
A quick refresher on what the series is about for those unaware. Continue Reading