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The Case of Hana & Alice Finally Arrives Sept 17th!

15 Sep

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Distributor:
Shout Factory! & GKIDS

Release Date:
Sept 17, 2019

Just how “Hana and Alice” met from the 2004 live action film of the same name was revealed in 2015 in the anime The Strange Case of Hana and Alice (花とアリス殺人事件). Although fans of Shunji Iwai‘s original work did not expect him to produce a prequel, I’m sure this deeper look into the trials and tribulations of what these young women faced during their developing friendship is welcomed. No knowledge of the prior movie is needed in a mostly Shōjo product. I was curious because of the suggestion of the paranormal becoming involved, and a murder mystery is always great to get the attention of viewers not into this subgenre.

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Punk Rock sensation BRATS at Anime Los Angeles 2020!

11 Sep

RMMS-BRATS-ALA-2020.jpgBe prepared to rock out with Japanese Rock Band BRATS to debut at Anime Los Angeles 2020! (January 9-12, 2020). They will perform at the Ontario Convention Center on Friday, January 10, 2020, and hold a fan Q&A on Saturday, January 11. They are appearing by arrangement with Resonance Media.

Formed by sisters Rei Kuromiya (vocals) and Aya Kuromiya (bass) – this all female act created the opening theme “Ainikoiyo” for the anime series To Be Hero and performed “Nounai Shoukyo Game” for the Japanese film Slavemen.

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Crowdfunding a Megazone 23

22 Aug

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Before The Matrix, there was Megazone 23. This Japanese original video animation was the first to suggest that people are living in an illusion. This anime is renowned for being one of the earliest influencers not only to similar films made in later years, but it hailed the silver age of anime. Macross (aka Robotech) was released around the same time. Music was a major influence in making Megazone23 just as memorable. While the sound is distinctly 80’s, so was the career of Miyasato Kumi (宮里久美) at the height of her career. She was the voice of the virtual singing idol, EVE.

Sadly, older video releases of this excellent series are out of print. Finding any copy is through either paying through the nose through eBay for a complete edition or waiting for bigger news to release. It was remastered in high definition for Bluray but is only available in Japan. Thankfully, that’s all about to change:

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The Miyazaki Charm is Alive in Ronja, Robber’s Daughter

20 Aug

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Released August 20, 2019
Shout! Factory & GKIDS

* Spoiler Alert

Gorō Miyazaki has big shoes to fill. As the son of Hayao, to shift from the career of garden landscaper to animation director can be viewed as extreme but I feel his skills in one world is transferable to another. He’s had plenty of education before working on Tales from Earthsea (2006) and From Up on Poppy Hill (2011). To work on a television series, Ronja, the Robber’s Daughter, shows his transition is complete. The attention to detail put in the background designs served his multi-purpose role well.

This series is based on Astrid Lindgren‘s book of the same name (Amazon link) (Ronia is the original spelling). The seminal character was born on a stormy night. Some may say great things are in store for her as she gets older. Almost like PIXAR’s Brave, this headstrong girl is looking to make her place in the world. Instead, what she finds is an innocent friendship with a young boy from a rival clan.

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