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Today in section I was forced to watch Howl's boring castle for the 5th time and to take notes on signs of hypermodernitity. Just thought you should know.

There was an extra "tit" in there. It's the rave's fault.

Does "hypermodernitity" become slightly more and more apparent the more you watch it?

Now, sooner or later someone has to ask this question, as you obviously don't agree with CUT's ranking: what would be your top-30 list?

Doesn't Tekkon Kinreet premiere next month? How does that make the list?

I sit in smug amusement.

Except for the lack of Naruto and Dragonball Z movies (which, properly, would have been naught but Toei TV manga festival events back in the day), I am shocked, shocked I say how close my 'post modern deconstruction' list from the earlier post is to this.

Only difference is some good movies are snuck in to the above 30. Metatheme-wise? Identical.

I do have to say, I'm quite surprised that the first Yamato movie is in there. Don't get me wrong, it's an IMPORTANT movie, it did kickstart an entire boom and did lots and lots of money, it's not that good of a movie. The roots of being spliced together out of a 26 episode TV series are all too visable. I think as a significant cultural event I would have placed 'Arrivederci, Yamato' there.

And how did 'Gundam Trilogy' get allowed? It's not like they ran all at once like the Ideon 'Contact/Be Invoked' pairing.

*pssst* Patrick. I think Marielle flashed you.

I didn't even know that they had made thirty anime films. By the way, you know we're all looking forward to hearing the next Hot Tears of Shame, secretly recorded at the Bandai Hobby Center!

>Doesn't Tekkon Kinreet premiere next month? How does that make the list?

Asmic Ace has been holding about seven press screenings a week for the film. It also played at the recent Tokyo International Film Festival. They even let my dumb ass see it. Going to be writing up a interview with the director for the Japan Times.

I'm also confused about the inclusion of TV compilations in the best 30 list, but not enough to keep me up at night. The Gundam Trilogy has enough new animation in it to qualify as a new experiences, but not so much Yamato 1 or Ashita no Joe 2.

Is anyone but me shocked that Ghibli titles make up nearly half of the list? Are any of them really any better than say, Harmageddon?

I'd really have to stretch to make a Best 30 list of anything. To fill up space, I'd probably cram it with Toei Manga Matsuri mini-features.

I showed my Best 10 list to Honda-san, and he almost smacked me when he saw Adieu Galaxy Express 999 on there. People need to watch it again. By people I mean "Steve Harrison." I'm really alone on this one...

I can't imagine making even a top five list, let alone thirty, that doesn't include Crusher Joe or Aim for the Top, but hey: what are lists for if not to whip otaku into a panty-twisting frenzy?

I think you'll agree that the real crime of that list is that Toei's breathless "The UFO Invasion is REAL!" loop isn't on there. Now THAT'S entertainment.

But it's all good, right Patrick? I mean, given that top 30, I'd rank Adieu GE999 above most all of them, but for ME, it's not as...hurm...visually exciting or something than the first GE999 film. I honestly didn't grok that Rin Taro directed both of them for a good amount of time. I'm not kidding, they were visually so different to me that I never even thought to try and puzzle out that dang Japper Knees writin'...

I think, also, I expected more payoff with Black Knight Faust. Lots of questions there, ya know? Like where was he during the whole first movie and stuff?

I admire A,GE999. I *enjoy* the first movie. Hows that?

As to lists, I could likely come up with a top 10, but it would be boring. Films are tougher than a general 'favorites' list.

Matt, the 'UFOs are real' short was the prolog to the 'UFO Great War' (aka Grendizer pilot film) TV manga fest featurette, right? If so, that boggles my mind. Just the idea that *Japanese school kids* would be assumed to know something about then-comtemporaty UFO lore, the Betty and Barney Hill abduction, the lost Air Force interceptors, et al stuns me no end. Just out there plain as day, a calvacade of UFOlogy. All as set-up for a goofy cartoon about a guy from space and his robot...

To my eyes, Adieu has much better animation and art direction than the original film. The backgrounds especially, are gorgeous. Break out the old Roman Albums and have a look. I know you have them somewhere!

The first film moves at warp speed. There's a lot of story and characters to cover. But Adieu is like Rintaro's Once Upon a Time in the West, full of looooong silences, pistol duels, musical motifs that practically double as characters. Like all great anime films of the '70s and '80s it just seems to go on forever in the best way. I feel totally wrung out and drained after Adieu, which are words that I tend to associate with "satisfied."

But yeah, I can see the other side and why it's not really embraced even by Matsumoto junkies.

As a Japanese friend told me, "I don't like Tetsuro try to be cool."

Have the Roman Albums somewhere? Try 5 feet away...one shelf, Yamato books. Next shelf, Harlock, GE999, other Matsumoto and...Odin...

Third shelf, Gundam. Other bookcase gets all the other anime books.

I get your 'Once Upon a Time in the West' comment. Yeah, I dig. I still have hangups about the film however. I guess we need to meet at a diner and hash it out over pancakes. I don't expect to change your mind, but maybe I can get a 'yeah, that's not so good, why DID Rin Taro do that?" from you. :)

I dunno if this got lost in the mail, stuff's been funky lately.

http://www.tsuruga.or.jp/moni/

So when you going? I tried to talk Matt into doing a roadtrip with you for a podcast...

As a Japanese friend told me, "I don't like Tetsuro try to be cool."

Ah, but that's just it. The moment I saw (the "moment" being 1984) Tetsuro standing on a pile of burning rubble, wasting a horde of hopping mechanical men with a machine gun, I knew I preferred this version to the fetal potatohead who hates to take baths. MY Adieu Roman Album is currently located seven feet away, between the hardback Arcadia Memorial Collection (still w/ the hankerchief in its bag*) and the Yasuo Yamada Memorial Roman Album.

--C.

*Still in its bag, because what were you supposed to do with it? Blow your nose on Harlock's face? Wipe your sweat on his uniform? The only appropriate usage I could think would be to hold it futilely against a friend's chest as the life-giving blood spurts out of him, victim of an anti-otaku stabbing. Heroic last words might be cribbed onto the cloth in advance, as a sort of cue card. Oddly enough, these character kerchiefs are much more appropriate for an age of moe, where the need to clean up afterwards is constant.

You only like 5 of these movies? Lets see here.

Nausicca, Gundam Trilogy, Laputa, Totoro, Lupin III, are my personal favorites. I think these are undeniable masterpieces.

I also really like Ghost in the Shell, Laputa, Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, Porco Rosso.

Evem though I personally dont like Akira, I know that it made quite the impact for the viewers and the animation industry, as did Space Cruiser Yamato, Galaxy Express 999, Ashita no Joe 2. Even Evangelion was ok, in the context of assuming the viewer is a EVA fan.

Although I never want to see it again, Grave of the Fireflies was a fantastically crafted movie.

As for the rest I didnt mention, I do mind them to be adequate but by no means classic, or I havent seen them yet. Im just kind of surprised at how so many American anime fans don't appreciate anything that came before Akira of Ghost in the Shell, or hate anything that doesnt involve violence. It just seems like it.

13. Howl’s Boring Castle
14. Urusei Yatsura 2: Beautiful Dreamer
17. Kiki’s Boring Delivery Service
18. Patlabor 1
19. Crayon Shin-chan (the "Natsukashi" one)
20. Girl who Leaped Through Time
21. Jin-roh
22. Wings of Honeamise
23. Perfect Blue
24. Mindgame
25. Night on the Galactic Railroad
26. Macross: Do You Remember Love?
28. Memories
29. Full Metal Alchemist
30. Tekkon Kinreet (Black and White)

"End Of Evangelion"! Pulease! What a steaming pile of shite.

I think I have a perspective on "Howl" that may be closer to Miyazaki's intent. Not that I'm Asian (I'm not) or Buddhist (I am), but because I'm definitely a geezer among the current flock of anime fans (I turn 55 next month). And, just as "Porco Rosso" was a midlife crisis movie for the director, indulging the fantasy of having two women (innocence and experience) with the hots for a pudgy middle-aged protagonist, "Howl" was the product of a 65 year old director using his medium to address some of the concerns in his life about age. It tried to do several other things as well (the subplot that was expanded beyond the novel to basically condemn our war in Iraq), but "Howl" is really a mature film much like the late works of Kurosawa, and for the same reasons.

All of your comments about Howl are true. It is certainly excellent art. I'm just not sure it's art that I like. Personally, to reflect on a different genre of film, people often place Argento's 'Suspiria' on top lists of horror movies, and while I can't help but agree that it's a beautiful art film, and I understand what the director was trying to do, I don't really care for it.

All that being said... Looking at the other films on the list, Howl probably belongs among them, even if it wasn't my bag.

Oh, and whoever made the comment about UY 2: Beautiful Dreamer being a Takahashi project, I've always gotten the impression that it was MUCH more of an Oshii project. It certainly feels like Oshii more than Takahashi(and he did write the screenplay and direct it).

Adieu is a hell of a movie. I had no idea a lot of people didn't hold it in high regard.

Personally, I'd love to see what kind of list a Japanese rag would make out of the Top 30 Tokusatsu Series.

I feel kinda defensive, it must be the time of year.

There's nothing WRONG with Adieu 999, it just comes across as rather flat after the fast paced roller coaster of the first movie. My Youth in Arcadia is similar. Both are very much tone pieces, like waves washing against a sand castle. Steady, constant, unstoppable.

I still would love to find out why Rin Taro didn't direct MYiA. I can't recall what else came out then, maybe he was working on Harmageddon or something. I can't think straight lately.

Hey Patrick, I met you a number of times at Viz or Mark and Julie's place. Cool Blog. I hear you about the last few years being rotten. At least you aren't stuck in Arizona.

Hmm...regarding the top 30 anime list I'm kind of surprised I've seen at least 3/4 of the list. I guess Nausicca being no.1 is an automatic, like how Citizen Kane is the best movie and Thriller the best music video. Personally, I admire the manga version so much that the anime feels like a rough draft. I would have liked to see the Utena film, Millennium Actress and possibly Metropolis on the list. I'm glad Char's Counterattack isn't present. Tomino is terrible at anything less than a 26 ep. series.

I completely agree with James Boren's comments on Nausicaä. I first had the opportunity to see the movie only after I had completely read the manga. I was very disappointed, though now I can see why it was so popular when it was released and have come to appreciate it for its own qualities.

To this day I am astonished that Miyazaki and Tokuma Shoten didn't take a shot at redoing Nausicaa as a 'subscription' series. Once the manga was finished ( it IS finished, isn't it? or at least in a place that's not agonizing if he never returns to it, unlike so many of Leiji Matsumoto's work?) it seems like money in the bank to start production of a Nausicaa OAV series, something that might have run a hundred episodes or so.

A concept that Kitty Film in Japan (not to be confused with the Kitty Films here in the US that's Mediablaster's porn wing) used successfully with the Legend of the Galactic Hero series.

OTOH, maybe as a concept it's not that good after all. I can't think of any *other* 'subscriber' based series that have been released in Japan....

I don't think Miyazaki likes to work in anything other than feature-length format if he has the chance. It's also been observed that MONONOKE HIME (which I think is his best film) is in many ways a re-examination of NAUSICAA, reflecting how his thoughts evolved over the course of the developing the manga story.

Where the hell is Golgo 13? Or Fist of the North Star? If your top movies of all time list doesn't contain those two titles at or near the top, then there's no way the rest of the list could be trusted.

Jin Roh...badass. Ghost in the Shell...great. All the Miyazaki stuff is good and (as if I have any ground to stand on) they should be up there. Especially Spirited Away. I was way into Neon Genesis when they were first out. Sat and watched them all back to back to back. I liked Ninja Scroll too. I wondered why no mention of a movie I liked, Metropolis. Maybe it's not considered one of the greats, but I thought the soundtrack alone is worth the price of admission. Rintaro directed a couple of other great films...one in this list.

I think Metropolis is aging really well. The review of the film in the new Mechademia book that Brian Ruh and some of you out there worked on seems to back me up on this.

The other underrated gem in the Rintaro filmography is, for my money, X - The Movie. The story is a mess, but it has atmosphere for days. I recently heard that Wachowskis were obsessed with it during pre-production on The Matrix, even moreso than the one anime film we all figured they had on repeat: Ghost in the Shell.

I love Atsuki Kimura's rendering of "St. James' Infirmary" in METROPOLIS. And to use "I Can't Stop Loving You" at the climax took balls the size of the World Trade Center, which fortunately Rintaro possesses.

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