Makoto Kobayashi’s “What’s Michael” may well have captured the hearts of many with his hilarious look at one of Japan’s most beloved cats, but over in Paris, Taiyo Matsumoto shows not every feline has to be an alley cat. They can be refined little nekos. Cats of the Louvre is a welcome addition to my family of kitties to play with.
Matsumoto’s artistic style more inspired by the talents from this country, namely Moebius, and it is perfect to capture the romance and beauty of everything Paris represents.
The Chinese Ghost Month is well at the mid-way mark, and this season is a time when spirits are said to roam the mortal realm. The gates to this spirit world are open from August 3 to 31 and while we can not see them, perhaps with the third eye awakened, perhaps those sensitive enough to this energy will see all. In the meantime, I’m looking at a fond favourite, A Chinese Ghost Story written and produced by Tsui Hark. I’ve talked about the many itereations of this story on otakunoculture before and the remake the remake at 28DLA.com
The animated version holds the test of time reasonably well. The story looks at the life of Ning, a tax collector, who finds a new love after his former one rejects him over the affections of a better well to do official. Money talks in this ancient world, and just whom Ning works for never does get fully explained. He’s supposedly collecting for the Emperor of China, but in his travels, he (like the live-action films) is a bumbling fool who has no messengers to send the money back to the palace. In his travels, he meets two monks, White Cloud and Ten Miles, who are described (in the translation) as Ghostbusters. Although the term is inaccurate, they are spirit seekers who want to send spirits back to where they belong. Red Beard is their rival.