Two anime films back to back. First of all, Katsuhiro �tomo’s Steamboy. Truly impressive artwork, amazing sound engineering, utterly poop story. I enjoyed the film but a second or third viewing would only be to check out the visuals. Set in Manchester and London in the steam powered 19th century, young Ray Steam has to help his father and grandfather do some crazy shit protecting their high pressure steamball invention. It’s insanely surreal to see an army of steam powered soldier-robots and flying steam powered attack kites fighting against a Japanese-speaking British army led by Robert Stephenson in the centre of 19th century London. Really, it is, you’ll just have to take my word for it.
What this film lacks in plot, is almost perfectly balanced with lovely things to look at. Almost. Apparently I’m one of very few people outside of Japan to see this film. Don’t I feel so goddam elite.
The other film was Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence. Again, truly impressive artwork with some very nice (but perhaps less well integrated) use of computer 3D rendering. But this time, a story! Hooray! As with the original Ghost in the Shell film, this has a good plot with some complicated ideas and some big dabs of existentialist philosophy, all of which combines to give an enjoyable and pretty intelluctually challenging film. A bit of a change from the usual bullshit you’re likely to see at the cinema.
The third film, which I saw yesterday was The Incredibles. Again, I’m one of the first to see it outside the US (I assume not counting all the bittorrenters :) I’m certainly the shadowy elite this weekend aren’t I. Is fun and clever as with all Pixar films and utterly beautiful. The hair (both wet and dry) was really a favourite with me. It’s not as entertaining as say, Shrek, but it’s still enjoyable.