Math Recommends, Round Two: Six Ghibli Movies / Anti-industrialist hoedown

November 26, 2006 at 3:04 am (Anime)

I think I’ve now seen every Ghibli movie of significance except the latest one. Continuing on with the algorithmic recommendations I’m getting from AniDB I cheated a little this time. Since there were two Ghibli movies in the top ten, I just went ahead and grabbed all of them that were on the list. This includes: Laputa, Kiki, Porco, Only Yesterday, Whisper of the Heart, and The Cat Returns. I guess I’ll cover them in producion order.

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Language Clashing in Black Lagoon: Don’t be a menace in Roanpur while you duriinku Vod-ka in Tokyo

November 25, 2006 at 6:05 am (Anime)

Black Lagoon 19 brought up some interesting language issues. I’m not sure what language they’re assumed to be speaking in Roanpur, but normally it doesn’t matter because they don’t need to stress that two groups are speaking *different* languages. So they can just have everyone speak Japanese, and I can just read the English subtitles.

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Code Geass has one two many ‘s’s, but still rockss me ssensseless.

November 16, 2006 at 9:55 am (Anime)

The explanation of the post-subject is that I finally understood the show’s title after episode 5, because I figured out they meant Geas not “Geass,” which is a word I know due to my D&D-enhanced vocabulary (I remember when I was ten my mother was like “where did you learn words like ‘adjacent’ and ‘melee’??”). Incidentally, because I don’t know the IPA it took me like fifteen minutes to dig up the correct English pronounciation of “gesh”. Anyway, I’m glad I finally picked Code Geass back up, because it continues to entertain, particularly with episode 5, which is the subject of this post.

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AniDB Mathematically Recommends, Round One

November 14, 2006 at 3:51 pm (Anime)

AniDB, as you may already know, has an interesting feature available to registered (it’s free) users. Through some algorithm that I didn’t bother looking up, it will take your ratings of anime, compare them to all the other users’ ratings of anime, and try to suggest things that you would like. One problem with this is that you have to rate something like 50+ anime for it to work. Also, because this is basically just a linear approximation of some sort, I end up getting a lot of random things like sequel OAVs to TV series that aren’t higher on the list. Now, sometimes the sequels are really okay without their predecessors, but I usually like to view things in order. No big deal though. Also, it actually turns out to work pretty well.

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Kyon makes harem-cruising so much more fun

November 6, 2006 at 5:18 pm (Anime)

Somehow I haven’t dropped Kanon yet. Kanon 05 actually had some pretty funny scenes, mostly due to Kyon being pretty gung-ho about his harem.

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You can have “that Will Smith movie,” but can you have “that Yui Horie anime”?

November 6, 2006 at 9:14 am (Anime, Movies, Theory)

I could not quite come up with an appropriate title for this post. This is a post about viewing foreign language film, viewing animated film, and identifying actors, directors, and other creative influences behind those works.

By identification I almost mean recognition, but not quite. If you watch a movie starring Harrison Ford or Will Smith, you might refer to it as a “Harrison Ford,” or “Will Smith” movie. This is true for a lot of Hollywood Stars. Their names alone will sell movies, and people will tend to identify them as the major sort of creative feature of the movie. That’s why it’s a “Will Smith movie,” not a “movie with Will Smith in it,” even if he’s just an actor, not a writer or director or whatever.

I was thinking though that this realllllly doesn’t happen with anime. Except I might be wrong (so hopefully I will get feedback on this).

One big reason I might be wrong is that I’m not fluent (or even competent, really) in Japanese. Since all there really is of the seiyuu in anime is their voices, I’m obviously not going to think of anime this way when there are only maybe one or two seiyuu whose voices I can even readily identify. So it’s hard for me to even be a fan of specific seiyuu, because I don’t often think things like “that seiyuu specifically really made that role awesome.” Actually about the only time I’ve had that experience was with Mai Otome where Tomoe should so obviously have been a trite and stupid villain, but Rie Tanaka somehow made her so ridiculous she was awesome.

One big reason I might be right is that I’m not sure the actors are as focal in anime as they are in live film, simply because they’re less visible. The focus, from my perspective, seems to be either on the production house or, in the case of adaptations, on the original author. Since directors (is this really true? I think it’s true, but I haven’t looked extensively) tend to work exclusively for a single production house, the studio gets as much identification as the director. Particularly when a production house uses the same animation team a lot and establishes a visual style (GAINAX, KyoAni) it becomes easy to identify production houses with anime, because the animation itself, rather than a particular actor, is then in the forefront. It may also be that the seiyuu just aren’t used as the center-of-attention to market anime in the same way Hollywood Stars are for their movies, but I don’t have the proper perspective to really say.

I think I have more to say about this, but that’s all for now.

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