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31 July 2006 @ 01:57 pm
general reveiw-style update  
i've done a lot of media watching this past week, and here's the score on all of them.

finished 3 different amine tv series: samurai champloo, paranoia agent and gilgamesh.

samurai champloo is exactly what i've come to expect from watanabe shinichiro--an action-filled saga about interesting characters, plenty of great music and stylish animation. while i'd say overall i liked cowboy bebop (he sure does love those funny names) a tinsy bit better, samurai champloo was well worth every minute. Grade: A

paranoia agent is another brilliant project from another brilliant director, satoshi kon. he says the show were his leftover ideas from projects like perfect blue and millenium actress, yet the closest thing i'd relate this show to is twin peaks. it's stunning and bizaare, and has possibly the best opening theme song ever. as with all of satoshi kon's projects, this is an anime series you'll like even if you don't like anime in general. very surreal. Grade: A+

unlike the first two, gilgamesh is an anime that has to suffer because of it's low budget. the story of a kind of post-apocolyptic earth brought on by some strange science-meets-mysticism disaster is very reminiscent of evangelion, and while it never surpasses its predecessor, it certainly has its good moments. i'm sure the manga it's based upon is very good, but the absolute lack of anything resembling good animation really pulls the show down from any heights it may have achieved. if you asked me about this show, i'd probably tell you to just go watch Eva again unless you really wanted to see an icy countess manipulating children rather than an icy scientist manipulating children. though the countess gets more interesting right at the very very end. EDIT: In retrospect, this show's story really did keep me interested, despite the animation problems, so i'm upgrading it from C to: Grade: B-

on another front, i also managed to catch the pirates of the carribean movie. i'd heard good things, but found myself wondering exactly why people told me that. the only good thing about the original film was Johnny Depp's hilariously swishy Jack Sparrow, and in the new movie, i'd be really hard-pressed to tell you something that he did or said that i found amusing. the one line i laughed at in the trailer wasn't even in the film. i HATE it when they do that. granted, this is a middle-act film, and that one always has to suffer because it lacks completion, but still, it dragged on and on and on with no land in sight, and was surprisingly un-funny on the whole. though i liked cthuhlu as davy jones. gotta give 'em that one. Grade: C
 
 
 
Alex Staherskiintheblacklodge on July 31st, 2006 08:01 pm (UTC)
Eh, middle act is no excuse. Look at all these other trilogies. Matrix Reloaded (my favorite of the 3)? Spider-man 2 (though this one might get topped by 3)? X-Men 2? Empire Strikes Back? White (of the Three Colors, though this doesn't really count since they're 3 separate stories, also Dracula's what?)? Back to the Future 2? Ocean's 12? Oldboy? I know there are more, but I'm starting to get bored. Of course there are a few that are weak like Two Towers and Star Trek 3, but I find them to be much less prevalent than the good ones.
Mellenabsentmammoth on July 31st, 2006 08:19 pm (UTC)
yeah, i agree, the middle act is often the best (because it is usually the darkest) but it's not until you've got the resolution of the third one that you can fully appreciate the second one sometimes. that's my opinion anyway.
brendaarei on August 4th, 2006 10:56 pm (UTC)
good luck in japan! i hope you have fun out there. if i head out that way (which is somewhat likely), we'll definitely have to meet up. :o)