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A Whisker Away, Slightly Fanciful but not Feline Free

30 Jun

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

A Whisker Away is likely to have accolades who love Shōjo manga more than curious cats wanting the supernatural to play more into this anime. I’m of the latter persuasion and want to know if the mysterious fat cat known as Mask Seller is a Nekomata. This particular type of trickster spirit loves to toy with humans.

Miyo Sasaki (Mirai Shida) is unfortunate to have a chance encounter with him, and part of it is due to finding out her parents are splitting. The Cheshire Cat can take lessons from this guy, and Keith Silverstein in the dubbed version is amazing in the role. It’s familiar and might be inspired by Jemaine Clement’s performance of Tamatoa the Hermit Crab from Moana, As the devil may care feline who trades in noa masks, he has his own agenda. Part of the deal allows the wearer to transform into another species for “immortality.”

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Hopping on the Promare Bandwagon Late

24 Jun

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available on iTunes and Regular Release Now

Collector’s Edition
August 4th, 2020

When humans are spontaneously combusting like nobody’s business, a new type of firefighter is needed to keep the peace in the feature-film length film, Promare. Some of these “victims” have learned how to control this pyrokinetic ability so they don’t die. They’re known as the Burnish and Lio Fotia rallied the bad ones together to form a terrorist organization to which the Freeze Force has to put (pardoning the pun) on ice.

30 years later, the struggle continues on. The Earth is undergoing a geologic change, and only a select few mutants can escape since they can “teleport” away. But nobody knows that there’s another race, the Promare, who resides in this planet’s inner core. They are in pain, and what’s happening results from the enemy toying with them.

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B: The Beginning is coming Oct 20th!

22 Jun

From the renowned animation powerhouse Production I.G.(Psycho-Pass, Ghost in the Shell, Attack on Titan) and director Kazuto Nakazawa (Parasite Dolls, animation director of Kill Bill: Vol. 1) comes the popular action suspense anime series, B: THE BEGINNING.

Directed by Nakazawa and Yoshinobu Yamakawa (Little Busters!), this gripping, character-driven crime procedural uniquely blends the visual marvel of anime, dystopian sci-fi supernatural fantasy, and gritty mystery narrative in equal measures. The series music is composed by Yoshihiro Ike (Blood: The Last Empire, Tiger & Bunny), with the theme song provided by former Megadeth guitarist Marty Friedman.

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It’s A Brand New Day with Sound! Euphonium in North America!

2 Jun

on VOD & Home Video
June 2nd, 2020
Shout! Factory

To anyone who has not heard of Sound! Euphonium, a primer about this series is in order. It was originally a series of novels by Ayano Takeda which was quick to become a franchise. After its initial publication in 2013, a manga soon followed, along with an animation series and now movies. Our Promise: A Brand New Day follows Kumiko in her second year at Kitauji High School. Not only does she have to make the new band of recruits in this high school symphony work in harmony, but also has to deal with a certain romance potentially coming into her life.

Altogether, I could not help but be reminded of the National Film Board of Canada’s documentary, That Higher Level while watching this anime. We are examining what makes these characters unique, and where they will go next when they have graduated from Kitauji High School.

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