Tag Archives: manga

[Trailer] SHOCHIKU to release BECK Live Action

One of the best (IMHO) anime’s of recent years has been BECK: The Mongolian Chop Squad. Based on the manga ‘BECK‘ by Harold Sakuishi published by Kodansha in Monthly Shōnen Magazine from February 2000 until it went on hiatus from May 2008.
The story is based around a high school boy that learns to play guitar and ultimately joins a rock band, along the way befriending Ryosuke, an enigmatic musician that has a dog called BECK.

SHOCHIKU Co., Ltd. has announced that 2010 will see a live action version directed by the one and only TSUTSUMI Yukihiko (20th Century Boys series) and will star Hiro MIZUSHIMA as Ryusuke, Takeru SATO as Koyuki and Shiori KUTSUNA.
Information about the project including the above trailer can be found on the SHOCHIKU English web site.

[Trailer] King of Thorn

Yuji Iwahara’s manga, King of Thorn is being made into a full length movie. The trailer (below) depicts the storyline as thus: 160 humans have been infected with the lethal Thorn virus and are put on ice until a cure can be found. The story takes place after a few people wake up from their cryogenic chambers seemingly only to be fed upon by a group of monsters.

English website is up here: link

Review: Detroit Metal City (2008)

DMC: Detroit Metal City
DMC: Detroit Metal City
(デトロイト・メタル・シティ, Detoroito Metaru Shiti)

Originally written May 12, 2009

Ken’ichi Matsuyama (well known actor in the role of ‘L‘ in the Death Note series of movies) plays a shy young man, Soichi Negishi, whose only interest is to make gentle music like that of his idols – Swedish Pop bands – his music is the kind that only puppies would like. Equipped with obligatory bowl head haircut, he goes to a corner in town, puts his guitar case down and strums to his heart content singing about things like flowers and love. This is getting him nowhere, he needs money to pay bills … the only action is to become a lead singer of a Death Metal Band, thus his alter-ego is born – Johannes Krauser II a terrorist demon from hell, a monster that killed and raped his parents (in that order). He takes his band DMC (Detroit Metal City) on the road and become the largest, loudest thing to hit Japan since the A-Bomb. However, Negishi hates DMC and all it stands for, longing to become the acoustic genius he thinks he is, he struggles with the pull of his obvious stage talent and his need for something more gentile.

Matsuyama shows that he is not only a great actor, but that his range is pretty awesome too. He plays two distinctly different characters in this film – miles apart from his ‘L’ outing and even more charismatic than his performance in ‘The Taste of Tea‘, where I first encountered him.

The story is somewhat strange but then it’s based on an anime that’s based on a Manga which in turn gave birth to this grotesquely funny flick.

Related Releases:

Detroit Metal City The Taste of Tea Linda Linda Linda Death Note Death Note II: The Last Name L - Change The World Don't Laugh At My Romance

All titles available from Yesasia, free postage worldwide.

Apologies for the untidy appearance of this post, I’m having trouble with the formatting in WP.

Review: Happily Ever After (2007)

Happily Ever After
Happily Ever After
Originally written June 4, 2009

Combine a moody, sullen and angry ex-Yakuza (Abe Hiroshi) with a loving, timid and hard working woman (Nakatani Miki) and you get the epitome of a doomed relationship. However, director Tsutsumi Yukihiko (20th Century Boys: Chapter 1, Memories of Tomorrow) shows us that this doesn’t have to be the case…

Not an ordinary Rom-Com at all, the film is tinged with scenes of battered wife syndrome and shows the problems attached to gambling addiction – but still manages to be quirky and funny at the same time.

We follow Miki‘s character, Morita Sachie, from her school life up to present day. It starts off with her not getting on well with any of her classmates and ending up befriending a strange girl that she would probably otherwise avoided.
Continue reading

Fullmetal Alchemist Returns

From 2003 to 2004, Arakawa Hiromu‘s manga was developed for TV and gained a massive following. So much so it even got an airing on the short lived Anime Central channel in the UK. 51 episodes of the anime ran and ended with lots of questions needing answers … a couple of years later we get a movie that attempts to answer them, but only gives us more questions…
Now, 4 years later we hear that FMA is to return! Now I was more than just a little bit sceptical after watching the first episode. Why? Well, rather than fill my inbox with lots of spoilers before it aired, I decided to wait and see with my own eyes. What I wasn’t prepared for was the series to start over from scratch.
The story goes that the company behind it wanted to be more faithful to the Manga, which on so many levels it is. The art is more ’rounded’ it has a manga feel to it. The animators – Bones – who have an impressive catalogue of superior productions, have made an eye-popping, jaw-dropping, drool-escaping animation – BUT – we’ve seen it all before. The original series followed the manga plot lines pretty closely, so really the story isn’t different. We’re seeing the same characters doing the same things – sometimes in a different order than before – but they’re still doing it.
I’m now 12 episodes into the current incarnation and thoroughly enjoying it, but I have to admit that I would be enjoying it a lot more if I hadn’t seen the 2003-04 run.
I think one of the stand outs in this latest jaunt is that whilst keeping it as close as possible to the manga they’ve managed to keep in a lot of the ‘mangaesque quirks’ in it.

FMA #1 P10 Pn3
FMA #1 P10 Pn3

FMA #3 03:13
FMA #3 03:13

It’s almost as if the manga was used as a storyboard for the anime – which in my book is a fantastic way to go. Okay, a lot of the silliness in manga may not transfer very well to anime and in this case it’ll take some getting used to – but at least it’ll be fun doing so.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
Hagane no Renkinjutsushi (2009)
鋼の錬金術師 (2009)
available via your local fansub provider.

The Remakes Continue

I was hesitant to write yet another remake entry but this one has had me a little perplexed for about a week now, so with apologies to those who are bored with my anti-remake-rhetoric, here we go again…

This is old news really, we all new it was on the cards but it now looks definite as WB have fast tracked the Live Action Remake of Akira for the summer of 2009. Worryingly (?), the name of DiCaprio has been bounced around this project for some time and it is indeed true – BUT he will be producing, not starring. In fact when he was asked whether he had an interest in taking a role his answer was simply, “No, not really”.
The film will be based on the Otomo manga rather than the anime of the same name, although the anime did stay pretty faithful to the books. The biggest changes are of course that this will be set in Manhattan not Tokyo. This is inevitable whichever way you look at it. To appeal to the largest audience possible, you can only base this on U.S. soil, however the clever thing in the script is that ‘New’ Manhattan is owned by the Japanese. Clever.
After New York is destroyed by a cataclysmic event, the American economy collapses and Japan (now the major superpower) buys the island of Manhattan to base their ever increasing population. It’s here where two friends, Kaneda and Travis (pfft!), members of a biker gang become embroiled in the enigma that is AKIRA.
The script, written by Gary Whitta, seems to have all the bases covered and whilst there’s a underlying feeling of irritation about the project, I feel kind of interested to see what the outcome will be…

Buy Akira from:

cdJapan – Blu-ray pre-order

Steampunk at Heart

I think not having a schedule now that my presence at Jobbcentrum is no longer required, has given my body a chance to reboot. This might be an excuse for being utterly lazy though, but I’m definitely resting a little more and I think it’s helping my creative juices flow a little easier.
That being said, I’ve done nothing creative for two days… why? I’ll tell ya…

I usually refrain from chatting Manga and Anime on the site because I know my regular readers aren’t all that interested in it. But every now and then a Manga or Anime will pop up and I’ll be addicted for life.
My introduction to it all was completely by mistake when I was a wee pup. I was standing with Dad in the Chinese take away and noticed a Chinese comic sitting amongst the newspapers. Obviously I couldn’t read it but the artwork hooked me in and from then on I had more than just an interest in things from the Orient…
This lead to an interest in Manga, which was easier to get hold of than Chinese comics.
Fast Forward >> Akira appears in selected art house cinemas and then on VHS. Hooked.
Fast Forward >> Dark Horse, Viz (US) and other comics publishers get in on the act … Hooked deeper.
Now: You can’t move for Manga or Anime influence. Not that you would know if you hadn’t a clue what either was.

On a message board this weekend I came across a reference to the following Anime series':

PlayAsia | YesAsia | Official Site | Wikipedia
Burst Angel
PlayAsia | YesAsia | Official Site | Wikipedia
Dōjin Work
PlayAsia | YesAsia | Official Site | Wikipedia
Last Exile
PlayAsia | YesAsia | Official Site | Wikipedia

Yes Asia

As I mentioned, I usually don’t chat too much about this kind of stuff, however – these Anime are so cool in their own ways that they deserve some props.

Blood+ s a long and character driven story about demon vampires. There’s more to it than just that of course and it succeeds on so many levels that you’d be hard pressed to dismiss it just because of the content. At the end of this series I was pretty moved… which is quite cool considering it’s a ‘cartoon’.

Burst Angel started in an awesome way. Anything that has scantily clad chicks with big guns always goes down well (!) and this definitely lives up to it’s blurbs. However, towards the end of the series it starts to slacken off and the animation becomes quite awful. It’s been described as a train wreck but this is harsh, it’s enjoyable. An offering by the enormously talented Gonzo peeps.

Dōjin Work is a laugh a minute. Comedy Anime isn’t my thing, however this is superb. The story follows a young girl trying to be an entrepreneur in whatever she can think of. Step up her best mate who draws comics for a living.

[Dōjin is a term used for creator owned, published and sold comics/manga.]

The episodes are only 15 minutes long but are bloody funny. Well worth a watch.

Finally, tonight I’ve just started watching Last Exile. A Steampunk anime of amazing quality and style. I’m two episodes in and I’m totally blown away. It’s just awesome! Another offering from the Gonzo Studio.

Last Exile
Last Exile

I hope that by reading this I might tempt a few people to chance a watch at some anime. It’s worth the effort and you’ll be thoroughly entertained too… go on, you know you want to …

Man Without Fear

… not me, Daredevil.
For years I’ve been using a web site for research, general info and continuity of the Daredevil comics. I don’t know why I’ve never registered at the site, maybe my built in aversion to web communities has something to do with it. But Janos told me something a while back that’s kind of stuck with me, he said:
“Dude, you got no mates, making friends with someone on the internet is your last chance!”
Joke. What he actually said was,
“They don’t know you, they can’t see you, what have you got to be afraid of?”
“I’m not afraid, it just weirds me out!”
“I dunno, it just does …”
I think the thing that didn’t help me very much was taking the plunge and joining a community for Japanese culture. Being a massive fan of Manga, Anime and Japanese film for about twenty five years – I thought it might be cool to actually speak and get to know some Japanese people. This totally back fired when I started to get ‘Smiles’ sent from the community site I signed up to. On checking, I noticed that by signing up I’d also enrolled in some kind of internet meeting place that didn’t offer the services I was after. Not only that, none of the ‘smiles’ I was getting was from anyone remotely oriental! That freaked me out. What was I supposed to do? I couldn’t reply to theses women, not even to say -“Thanks, but no thanks”, which Janos didn’t understand either. So I ended up ignoring it. I don’t get as many smiles now, but hey, who needs ‘em right?
But now, I can see what he meant. So, I’ve carefully chosen a community that if they send me anything at all, it will be geek news on the latest comic I love.

I’d suggest that if you like comics and like Daredevil, like me, go check out Man Without Fear .com, and if you like it – sign up. Go on, what are you afraid of?