I’ve got quite a big backlog of movies built up, so I hope that I can clear that one in the next couple of days. First up is the follow-up movie of Nasu – Summer in Adalusia: Suitcase no Wataridori. They’re both movies about professional cycling (like, the real thing, not a bunch of teenagers racing against each other), and follow the lead Character Pepe as he tries to win some races. Suitcase no Wataridori shows a race of his and his team mates in Japan. If you liked Summer in Andalusia, then you should check this one out as well, because it’s superior in nearly every single way.
Suitcase no Wataridori is a really balanced movie, it’s got a bit of everything: there’s excitement, action, romance, comedy, tragedy, a character-study, all packaged together quite neatly in a one-hour movie without any of the parts featured too little or too much. The Cat ex Machina that was rather annoying in the first movie is also gone as well, and the events flow much more naturally this time, and this overall makes this a very fun movie to watch, making you care about the different characters. Even the romance doesn’t feel out of place and is really nicely done.
The graphics have also received a major boost. The CG is much less apparent and blends much more with the 2D graphics. And the Ghibli-esque animation really works! It adds great expressivity to the different characters, it definitely was a visual feast and a movie budget well used.
So yeah, that’s pretty much why I’ve given this movie such a high rating: it pretty much did everything it was supposed to do, without feeling rushed or anything. Most movies suffer from a rushed or oversimplified plot, but everything was really balanced for Suitcase no Wataridori. Overall, the two movies complement each other pretty well. While Suitcase no Wataridori is superior in technical terms, Summer of Andalusia does provide some valuable background on Pepe, and together they form a pretty nice recommendation for if you like quick sports anime, or want to watch some cycling but don’t have the patience to sit through five plus hours of a real-world cycling tournament.