tag : bright yellow-green apples: there's no other way/all that you can do is watch them play

"I see little point in persisting in a discussion with one so obstinate as you" Martin White

Saturday, July 16, 2005

there's no other way/all that you can do is watch them play

figure 56.9. it's dare

I finally got to see Spirited Away last night, after looking to since it first came out. It's inspiring to see how people can still use 'conventional' animation to such astonishing effect, even as some say it's obsolete with the rise of Dreamworks-esc computer animation. That the hand can directly shine out with such inconceiveable splurges. The visuals and story are both very elegent and poetic, with a truely lyrical feel - it just flows and unfolds naturally (as much as something so supernatural could). The basic gist is the tale of a girl who somehow finds herself caught up in the life of a spa hostel, for gods. Through the central thread of trying to find her way back to our reality, we come across frog men, paper clouds, giant babies, and decieptful spirits. How much of the bemusing oddness is down to how I, as a western Viewer, am not familiar with the assumed cultural markers and references is open to quesrion (it is, in many ways, a new anime form of the Alice in Wonderland stories). But the film certainly works like a dream, with it's own internal logic that helps the whimsy and playful abandon mesh together.

from one playful cartoon venture to another

I was more suprised, perhaps, by how good the new Gorilaz album is. The first was great fun, and at times ever so creative in using fairly basic musical elements in the tunes. But it was all so considered and self conscious, with a bizarre cartoon virtual world of a band, that I couldn't help but think the venture would collapse in on itself. But Demon Days is, as they say, as if they've coloured the first one in. It's richer, happier to do complex experiments and yet trust to the music to be enjoyable. How on earth the indie boy Damon Alburn managed to get to the stage where he's making beatsy music with rappers, and getting Dennis Hopper to contribute vocals I don't know. But it caught me instantly by the second listen. It's particularly fun to see Sean Rider chipping-in with his usual charisma. Smashing.


Anonymous James Stewart said...

We've become big Miyazaki fans. Most lately we went to see Howl's Moving Castle, and while it didn't work for me in quite the way of Spirited Away, I'd highly recommend it. His politics come further to the fore, but there's enough subtlety and beautiful observation to balance that (plus I like his politics :) )

2:08 PM  
Blogger hatchris said...

I don't have anything intelligent to say except that I saw Sprited Away at RTF last year, and it was one of the happiest and far removed couple of hours I have ever spent!
Totally transports you to another world you don't quite want to come back from. Awesome stuff.

9:36 PM  
Blogger postliberal said...

It seemed so ambiguous, and sometimes almost threatening in it's unpredictable workings, that I'd think twice about wanting to be too involved in that reality. But you're right about the captivating qualities...

...and I'd certainly like to check out some more by this guy (thanks for the reccomendation).

Earlier this evening, I happened to see the video for Gorilaz's new single dare - it's cool and funny, with a very unexpected position for Sean. He seems to have had fun, bless.

12:55 AM  
Anonymous Donna said...

I love this movie. You also need to see Princess Mononoke (http://www.nausicaa.net/miyazaki/mh/)

4:14 AM  
Blogger postliberal said...

Thanks, anther reccomendation. In kind I must just also take this chance to flag up another animated film that struck me as astonishingly original in it's vision. A totally different world, the French film Belleville Rendez-vous is sublime, beautiful, and very cleverly - yet simply - told.

12:18 AM  
Blogger ken said...

IMDB informs me that there's a few more by Miyazaki & Studio Ghibli that should be recommended:

Howl's Moving Castle (original title: Hauru no ugoku shiro)
Princess Mononoke (Mononoke-hime)
Porco Rosso (Kurenai no buta)

Porco Rosso's a highlight: a pig fighter ace...

Take care.
love K3n.

3:40 PM  
Blogger postliberal said...

More films to add to my list? Much appreciated of course, but it's going to take a while to track all this down. Perhaps I should check up on my old housemate Andy, who's obsessed with anything even remotely Anime.

1:28 AM  

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