Posted by psgels on 5 March 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews




Here is something that dawned to me while watching A Wind Named Amnesia, about modern anime movies: they aren’t rushed. Sure some of them are bad and all, but I don’t think I can name any movie that premiered during the past years whose story did not sort-of fit in the time that was allocated to it. Some may be fast-paced, but no movie really lacked entire arcs that should have been animated as well. It’s an interesting observation, considering how this is a problem that many TV-series and OVAs suffer from.

Some of the old movies also suffer from this, to take A Wind Named Amnesia just as an example. I haven’t read the manga (coming from the same original author as Vampire Hunter D), but at times, especially near the end, it feels like the creators skipped entire volumes out of time constraints, just to get to a very strange and confusing ending that doesn’t fit in the story in the slightest as a result. If you plan to watch this series, be aware of a very incomplete story.

The story that’s there impressed me, though. It is centred around a basic, but very interesting question, and the vast majority of this movie is dedicated to studying human behavior. It asks questions behind human culture and civilization, and what would happen if all of that would disappear: what would drive them and how do they survive when suddenly their entire lives are turned upside down? The movie is only 80 minutes long, which is way too little to really get in depth on the theme, but the stories that did make it into the movie are wonderfully told, and very interesting to boot.

It’s a very lonely movie. There’s this melancholy throughout the entire airtime that only gets strengthened thanks to some well chosen and performed background music. The protagonist here is excellent in the way that he is easy to relate to in the chaotic world that this movie portrays, while learning a lot throughout the movie and his backstory.

The animation isn’t the most consistent for a movie: some parts are really well animated, others a bit less, but it still is a visually impressive movie with strong character designs. But yeah, the ending jumps around way too much without any build-up. Ideally, this should have been a TV-series, not a movie.

Storytelling: 7/10 – Excellent atmosphere, but way too short for its story, which especially bites back at the end.
Characters: 8/10 – Both the lead and side characters are wonderfully portrayed in the short time that this movie has for them.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Excellent soundtrack, nice, though not the most consistent animation.
Setting: 9/10 – Based on a number of excellent ideas, and takes excellent advantage of this.

Suggestions:
Please Save my Earth (done by the same director, and again ridiculously rushed despite having an awesome premise)
Strange Dawn
Saishuu Heiki Kanojo

2 Responses

  1. chounokoe says:

    Well, like many movies this is also an adaption of a novel. In this case it’s a SF-novel by Kikuchi Hideyuki named 風の名はアムネジア, also published in English under the same title as the movie “A Wind Named Amnesia”.
    The novel is relatively short with about 250 pages compared to many adaptions nowadays, but like many novel adaptions this seems to crumble under the content of the source.

    I still have to see this movie though as it’s quite important.

  2. light says:

    awsome movie loved it

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  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:30 AM)
    Watchmen was deemed ‘unadaptable’ for about thirty years, so just getting what Snyder got out of the material is a huge success; it is said that what he did was to write a book version of Ingmar’s Holy Mountain. Watchmen is the only graphic novel to ever win a Hugo award and is easily the most intricate and multilayered Alan Moore comic, so it’s no surprise that it continues to top ‘best comics of all time’ charts to this day.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:20 AM)
    I beg to differ. Doctor Manhatten is the most intriguing character of Watchmen and the comic is a giant in ,not only in the comic world, but the history of literature itself. It is a deconstruction of superheros and Dr. M shows how afraid the world would really be when faced with a ‘superman’ and how a creature in such a higher realm of time and perception would show apathy toward humans and their foolish struggles.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:15 AM)
    GitS just won’t work. Maybe in a world before the Matrix, but not now with so many elements of it borrowed liberally by so many franchises in various mediums. Scarlet Johansson is decent in roles that fit her. She was enjoyable in Lost In Translation, but race aside she has nothing in common with Kusanagi. This is a travesty and the franchise is dear to me so it especially burns my ass.
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:10 AM)
    While I am no fan of man of steel, Nolan and Snyder, just about anyone would have a hard time taking a difficult character like superman and making him work on screen.
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:08 AM)
    Apart from Veidt and Rorshach I could never get into the characters all that much in watchmen. I also found the film overly long and mediocre acted for the larger part. But to each there own. For Alan moores works I always preferred his Miracleman, swamp thing, V for Vendetta stories.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:06 AM)
    Nolan can produce the action plus personal and dark story that Alita would need, and he also brings talent such as composer Hans Zimmer and Cinematographer Sally Pfister to the table. Him and Snyder have too much combined integrity to make a mockery out of Alita like Spielberg did with the GitS license.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:03 AM)
    Well Snyder has respect for his source materials and that is key in anime-to-film adaptations. Hell I’m a big Watchmen fan and I thought his version was (almost painfully) close to the comic. You’re not going to get that anywhere else in Hollywood. Also the combination of Nolan/Snyder is quite different than them individually.
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 05:34 AM)
    And directed it as a co-production with America, using a Japanese cast.
    Yeah…this is impossible…
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 05:32 AM)
    The only way a live action ghost in the shell film would work is if Mamoru oshii directed it.
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 05:29 AM)
    Wait wait…his Van helsing film is a reboot sorry I confused it with the other one.

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