Author Topic: RossRoy's Random Viewings  (Read 172045 times)

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #345 on: July 10, 2009, 04:18:21 AM »
Ah! My Goddess: Flights of Fancy: TV Series Season 2
 
Original Title: Aa Megami-sama: Sorezore no Tsubasa
Year: 2006
Country: Japan
Director: Hiroaki Gohda
Rating: TV-PG
Length: 24x 24min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 1.78:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital Stereo, Japanese: Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English

What they say
The song may say "Thank heaven for little girls" - but who is college student Keiichi Morisato supposed to thank when three honest to goodness living Goddesses move in and take over his life? And should he really be all that grateful?

After all, in most mythologies, close relationships between mortals and immortals usually lead to mortifying complications, so we're already talking about an extremely mixed blessing! And when a FOURTH Goddess suddenly appears, that blessing becomes more like a curse! They may just be trying to help, but sometimes it seems that Belldandy, Skuld, Urd and Peorth might be less concerned with Keiichi's safety than they are with establishing a pecking order and ownership rights!

The delicate celestial balance that exists between human and goddess is thrown into complete and utter chaos in Ah! My Goddess 2 - The Complete Collection!

My Thought
That was great! I loved every minute of it. The introduction of a fourth goddess, even though she has a teeny tiny role, and having Urd's (who's half demon half goddess) mom come into play was a nice touch. I thought they kept it very interesting, balancing the standard everyday life and goddess elements really well. There's also some great moments, both funny and touching.

Rating:

The whole Ah My Goddess series, including both TV Series, the OVA and the Mini-Goddess adventures, is really worthwhile. It's fun, has a great story and great characters. You can't go wrong with it.

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #346 on: July 10, 2009, 04:33:35 AM »
   Madlax Collection
   
 
         
Original Title: Madlax
Year: 2004
Country: Japan
Director: Koichi Mashimo
Rating: TV-14
Length: 26x 25min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 1.78:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital 5.1, Japanese: Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English

      

     

What they say
The country of Gazth-Sonika has been engaged in a civil war for more than a decade, struggling to stay afloat amidst attacks from the anti-government faction known as Garza. With lies and corruption seeping into the political food chain, a mysterious book in one young girl’s possession may be the only key to uncovering the truth and bringing an end to the war. This book, however, is sought by many. And when the invincible agent Madlax is hired to protect those in search of its truth, Gazth-Sonika dispatches a ruthless soldier to make sure that truth stays in the darkness...

My Thoughts
I'm disappointed by Madlax. Granted, I had high hopes for it, seeing as it is made by pretty much the same team that did Noir, which I loved. Something's amiss here.

In Noir, the plot was dense, very mysterious and a bit hard to follow at times, but it still made sense and you could make out what was going on. Here, in Madlax, they went for mystery overload! Half the series, I had pretty much no idea what was going on. The plot is incredibly dense and hard to follow at times, it's scary. But, I must say, in the end, during the last few episodes, the puzzle pieces actually do fall into place and everything starts make sense... somewhat. There's still a whole mystical event that isn't explained. There's no mention of how it could happen, why it could be reversed, and why it happened again!

A big positive though, and it was the same in Noir, is that the fight sequences are incredible. They are well choreographed and, as opposed to some other series, the "sexy" factor doesn't overpower the action. Madlax is a tough mercenary, and they stay true to it all the way.

Again, the music by Yuki Kajiura is awesome, blending different genre into a whole that elevates the series to a while new level. I'm still haunted by Madlax's fight theme.

Rating:

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #347 on: July 28, 2009, 10:25:41 PM »
   Gad Guard
   
Original Title: Gado Gado
Year: 2003
Country: Japan
Director: Hiroshi Nishikiori
Rating: NR
Length: 26 x 24min.
Video: Full Frame 1.33:1
Audio: Japanese: Dolby Digital Stereo, English: Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English

     


What they say
Many people have searched for it, many have stolen it, and many will kill for it. The Gad is a seemingly magical stone which, once making a strong spiritual connection with someone, will grow into a very powerful robot known as a Techode -- a mechanical being that embodies the will of the bonded person. This is the story of Hajiki Sanada, a boy struggling to help support his fatherless family in an electricity-impoverished city known as Night Town. One day he encounters the Gad and a special bond is formed. Now his life will never be the same...

My Thoughts
Nice little show. Nothing too fancy, but I liked it. The animation style is interesting, especially the ladies (the adult ones, the children are drawn in the "standard" way, but the adult ladies have something different going on in their drawing style), makes them seem more "sexy".

The story is pretty standard: poor, hard working kid gets his hand on cutting edge "technology" (a Gad) which gives him almost infinite powers when it transforms into a Techode (think giant robot, but a robot that has a will of its own, to a certain extent). The show revolves around Hajiki and trying to understand what are Techodes, while defending the people he loves. He also grows quite a bit as a character during the course of the show. The revelation, at the end, of what the Gads actually are is a nice twist, and it gives a whole new perspective on the events that happen during the show.

Rating:

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #348 on: July 28, 2009, 10:37:29 PM »
   All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku Collection
   
 
Original Title: Bannou Bunka Neko-Musume
Year: 1992
Country: Japan
Director: Hidetoshi Shigematsu
Rating: NR
Length: 6x 30min.
Video: Full Frame 1.33:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital 5.1, Japanese: Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English


What they say
When inventor Kyusaku Natsume transfers the brain of his son Ryunosuke's cat into a top secret android body, the family doesn't lose a pet... they gain a daughter! While she may look like a typical teenage girl to the rest of the world, Nuku Nuku's feminine exterior hides the superhuman strength and abilities of the NK-1124 android chassis, making her the most potent fighting force ever unleashed upon an unsuspecting Japan... and the ideal bodyguard for Ryunosuke!

But can even Nuku Nuku keep her young charge out of the insidious clutches of the ruthless Akiko Mishima, president of Mishima Heavy Industries (M.H.I.), financier of the NK-1124 project, Kyusaku's ex-wife and Ryunosuke's mother? The greatest custody battle of all time erupts in a conflagration across Japan as Akiko unleashes the full force of M.H.I.'s military products division, manned by her elite team of Office-Lady Warriors, in her bid to win back Ryunosuke.

My Thoughts
Just read the back blurb again. It pretty much sums up the whole show.

What I find sad is that they didn't play the cat-brain angle enough. They show Nuku-Nuku as being a pretty standard high school girl. The fact the android body has a cat brain doesn't come into play enough. They play on the android side, more than the cat side, and I think it would've been funnier the other way around. There are a couple of visual jokes of Nuku-Nuku actually being a cat (like when she finds a job and curls up on the table for a nap, or when she goes berserk after seeing a few rats) but they are too few.

This might all stem from the format of the show though. The show doesn't take itself seriously at all. Most of comedy comes from the fights between Nuku-Nuku and all the crazy military hardware. Every fight is completely over-the-top, but it's fun that way, The problem is the length of the show. 6 half hour episode is not enough to flesh out the characters and all. They jump right into the action and never let go.

It's fun, very funny, and interesting. But I just wish they had the time to flesh out the characters and have fun with the characters, instead of with the situations.

Rating:

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #349 on: August 03, 2009, 06:16:29 AM »
   All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku TV: Complete Collection
   
 
            
Original Title: Bannou Bunka Neko-Musume
Year: 1998
Country: Japan
Director: Yoshitaka Fujimota
Rating: TV-PG
Length: 14 x 30 min.
Video: Full Frame 1.33:1
Audio: English, Japanese
Subtitles: English

         

     

What they say
When Natsume Atsuko, nicknamed Nuku Nuku, comes to live with Ryounosuke’s family, he falls in love instantly. After all, to all appearances, she’s a beautiful, normal, if slightly ditzy, teenage girl. In reality, however, she’s an all-purpose cat-brained andorobot who’s escaped from Mishima Heavy Industries’ research laboratories. She’s not supposed to use her special powers, but when more of Mishima’s experiments run amuck and her friends are threatened, she’ll do whatever she can to save them. It’s never just another day at school when your classmate’s an All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl!

My Thoughts
I liked it, more than I should have really. It did shed a new light on the previous Nuku-Nuku I reviewed and raised my appreciation of the OVA.

The problem with the TV version is that... they changed pretty much everything! Nuku-Nuku is still a cat-brained androbot. And she still lives with Ryounosuke's family. But that's where the similarities end. Gone are the fights between Kyousaku and Akiko (Ryounosuke's parents). Well actually, they are not "gone" per-se, it's just that they don't know they are fighting each other, because they now have alternate superhero style personas... I mean.. what?!? Akiko is not even the head of Mishima anymore, merely a "vice-president" if you will. It is so different from the original OVA that in the opening of each show, Nuku-Nuku explains how she used to be a cat that was transformed into a cat brain androbot and that the show is the awesome story of her life. Right after she says that, you see Ryounosuke come up and say something like "the reality is totally different, but nevermind" while holding copies of the original OVA tapes and Manga. A nice touch, even if it is simply a Lampshade Hanging

Then there's Nuku's classmates. Each and every one a full on clichéd stereotype (Pop singer who talks only in song, Occult adept who sees bad omens in everything, Nihilistic pretty boy, Egocentric rich snob spoiled brat along with the twin yes-girls at her side, the bookworm who never speaks, even a junior mad-scientist and a militaristic displinary class lead).. which would work in the context of the show, seeing as it's still a way over-the-top comedy show. The problem is they are over-used, and becoming all too repetitive and predictable as the show goes on.

Most of the comedy is slapstick humour and revolves around Nuku-Nuku's adaptation in "human society", her being cat brained and all. Thing is, like I said previously in my Pink Panther review, slpastick is inherently limited in the range of things it can do before starting to feel redundant and repetitive. So what do you think happens with a 14 episodes show? They creative team does get a few nice flashes along the way, but the episodes themselves are still quite formulaic and become a bit too repetitive. I may have noticed it more because of watching the show on DVD, instead of once a week on TV. Still, it's a negative.

But like I said above, despite all that, I still loved the show more than I should have. I found it entertaining and very funny at times. Every character gets his "shining moment" and I liked them all. So while I did like it, there's plenty of other stuff I'd recommend over that to anyone getting into anime, starting with the original OVA! But it was good for what it was.

Rating:

Wow, I used way more words than I should have for this show hehehe

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #350 on: August 24, 2009, 05:49:01 PM »
   All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku Dash!: Complete Collection
   
            
Original Title: Bannou Bunka Nekomusume Dash!
Year: 1998
Country: Japan
Director: Yoshitaka Fujimoto
Rating: TV-PG
Length: 14x 30min.
Video: Full Frame 1.33:1
Audio: English, Japanese
Subtitles: English

         

     



What they say
Ryunosuke Natsume has no idea his household helper is really the super sexy hero Cat Girl Nuku Nuku, he just feels lucky to have the lovely girl so close.

Nuku on the other hand, while trying to take care of her newly adopted family, battles with the temper of Ryunosuke's mother, Nuku's lost memories and the evil that lurks inside Mishima, the most powerful company in Maneki City!

As Mishima unleashes new and more terrorizing weapons in an attempt to take down Nuku, placing Maneki City in a clear and present danger, Nuku faces the ultimate choice - save herself or the people she loves!

My Thoughts
Well! They might've just dropped the Nuku-Nuku name. Nothing is the same this time around. Ryunosuke is now older and doesn't know about Nuku Nuku being an android, which of course means they had to make him fall in love with her. Ryunosuke's father is no longer Nuku Nuku's creator. Nuku Nuku herself has also changed. She now sports blonde hair, and has an alternate costume when she unleashes her android powers. I could go on and on with the changes...

But, the biggest change of all is the tone of the series. It's like they tried to make a serious series out of something that just can't be serious at all (cat brain in an android anyone?)

The result is a mixed bag. Sometimes it's great, but it also falls flat on its face quite a few times too.

So, final verdict? I say watch the OVA, then, if you really like it, try the TV series. If you like that, then move on to Dash. Just keep in mind that it's a totally different universe.

Rating:

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #351 on: August 24, 2009, 06:01:44 PM »
   Battlestar Galactica: Season 4.5
   
 
         
Original Title: Battlestar Galactica
Year: 2009
Country: United States
Director: Various
Rating: 14A
Length: 763 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 1.78:1
Audio: English
Subtitles: English, Spanish

      

   


What they say
All will be revealed as teh thrilling final episodes of Battlestar Galactica 4.3 land on DVD. From their initial action-packed battles against the Cylons to their desperate attempts to find the fabled 13th colony, Earth, a determined band of human survivors has captivated audiences everywhere with their desperate quest to find a new home for their dwindling numbers. Join them now as the fleet journeys into the furthest reaches of unexplored space and faces a crucial decision that will change all of their lives irrevocably. Presented uninterrupted in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound, this epic 4-discs set contains ever 10 hours of intense, groundbreaking DVD features, including extended episodes that never aired - a must-own addition to every fan's collection. Relive the anticpation, the action and the excitement of this groundbreaking series that is destined to live on as "one of the best dramas on TV" (Time Magazine).

My Thoughts
Wow. Just wow. This series hasn't disappointed me since the beginning. Sure, they've hit some roadblocks, mostly during S3, but they got around them and delivered an awesome new take of this series.

Season 4.5 had a lot of strong points going for it. Even some big surprises.

(click to show/hide)

I can't wait to dive again, and rewatch the whole series, knowing in advance what is coming and see if any clues were left throughout the series!

Rating:
« Last Edit: August 24, 2009, 06:03:58 PM by RossRoy »

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #352 on: August 25, 2009, 01:25:09 AM »
Battlestar Galactica: Season 4.5

I just got mine and peeked into it a little. "What the frak is going on with BSG" is probably one of the funniest (and longest) recaps I have ever seen.

Not so funny: my Disc 2 seems to be defective, so I'm not sure if I can watch it soon.
Matthias

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #353 on: August 25, 2009, 03:25:04 AM »
Battlestar Galactica: Season 4.5

I just got mine and peeked into it a little. "What the frak is going on with BSG" is probably one of the funniest (and longest) recaps I have ever seen.

Yeah, I love the little "color commentaries" the narrator keeps putting in  :laugh:

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #354 on: September 23, 2009, 05:25:41 AM »
You know it's funny how when I watch a TV series or an Anime series, I almost never watch the opening sequence. I watch it once with the first episode and then skip over them in subsequent episodes.

Lately, I've been watching Galaxy Angel, and starting with Galaxy Angel AA, something odd happened. I like the opening sequence AND the closing sequence enough to actually watch them.. every single time! I love both songs and the animation! So odd for me..

So, if you're curious, here they are:
Opening


Ending



RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #355 on: September 29, 2009, 06:37:21 AM »
   Galaxy Angel
   
 
         
Original Title: Galaxy Angel
Year: 2001
Country: Japan
Directors:
  • Morio Asaka & Yoshimitsu Ohashi (Galaxy Angel & Z)
  • Shigehito Takayanagi (Galaxy Angel A, AA, S & X)
Rating: TV-14
Length: 127 x 12min.
Video: Full Frame 1.33:1
Audio: Japanese, English
Subtitles: English

      

     


What they say
Milfeulle Sakuraba is the newest member of the Angel Brigade, a branch of the Transvaal Empire military whose primary mission is to search for relics known as ‘Lost Technology’. The only problem is…no one actually knows what the Lost Technology is! Relegated to performing menial tasks of the highest priorities: a search for lost kittens, defusing of a talking missile, and delivering an old school I.D – The Angel Brigade’s here to save the galaxy…one planet at a time!

My Thoughts
What a crazy show! It's like we've created a bunch of characters and a world to put them in, now, let's have fun, and do whatever the hell we want with them! And that's literally what happens. Stuff that happens in previous episodes don't mean squat in the following one (not as obvious in the first series, but becomes more and more obvious in later ones). Some episodes end with various members of the Galaxy Angel brigade dead or MIA, yet int he next they are back with no mention of their whereabouts. Usually, I don't like that kind of stuff. I prefer when a series in a long story, and each episode comes and expands on it. I don't necessarily mean to continue a single long story, but at least to acknowledge things that happened before. In Galaxy Angel, it's like each episode takes places in its own little dimension.

But somehow, I like the show a lot. The characters are fun. They all have their quirk and oddities, and they complement each other nicely. The situations they put the Angels in are completely out of this world, and most of the time do not follow any logic, and yet, there's something to love the show. It's so cute and funny! I just couldn't stop watching. I had to watch the next episode, and the next, and the next ...

Rating:
« Last Edit: September 29, 2009, 06:49:40 AM by RossRoy »

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #356 on: October 10, 2009, 06:44:33 AM »
The Insatiable
 
What they say
Harry Balbo (Flanery), a shy salesman, is on his way home one night when he witnesses Tatiana, a female vampire (Ayanna) violently rip the head off her victim. When no one believes his story, Harry decides to build a large cage in his cellar to trap the bloodthirsty killer. Using himself as bait, Harry tricks Tatiana into the cage and imprisons her. But with no source of fresh blood, the strikingly beautiful vampire faces sure death. Not wanting to kill such a remarkable creature, but unable to release a ravenous vampire onto the city streets, Harry is faced with an impossible choice -- give in to her seductive powers or save innocent lives from a gruesome fate.
My Thoughts
I must admit, I bought this movie solely for Charlotte Ayanna. I completely fell under her charms when I first watched Training Day (she plays Ethan Hawke's companion). Those eyes..

So basically, when I stumbled upon this while browsing some DVD shop inventory, I couldn't resist. I didn't read anything about the movie, just the cover blurb you see above. So I knew it involved Vampires and that's about it.

But, I didn't expect this.

Turns out, it does involve a vampire. It does have killings. It does have blood and gore. But, it's basically a love story, for better or worse.

I like the somewhat of a twist of a normal guy falling in love with a vampire, but it's a bit much. And the whole movie holds together on too many impossibilities. One of the most glaring one being that a run-of-the-mill, white collar, office worker can learn how to weld from a book in a single day, and that very same night build a steel cage strong enough to hold a vampire that can easily jump 3-stories high? Yeah...

But somehow, I still liked the movie. In no small part thanks to Charlotte Ayanna. I think she played the seducteress vampire perfectly. The guy playing the run-of-the-mill white collar worker is pretty good too. And they happen to have decent chemistry, which helps.

I would say The Insatiable is an entertaining little movie. Just be prepared to take some leaps of logic at times, and do not expect a lot of action.
Rating:

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #357 on: October 11, 2009, 03:03:27 AM »
Friday the 13th
 
What they say
Terror and suspense abound in this 24-hour nightmare of blood. Camp Crystal Lake has been been shuttered for over 20 years due to several vicious and unsolved murders. The camp's new owner and several young counselors are readying the property for re-opening despite warnings of a "death curse" by local residents. The curse proves true on Friday the 13th as one by one each of the counselors is stalked by a violent killer.This film is widely acclaimed for its horrifying and creative murder sequences.
My Thoughts
Suspense? Where? They don't take the time to build the suspense. All they do is to have the story make the kids get isolated, only to be promptly killed, without much build up. The movie gets so easily predictable because of it (not that there's a whole lot of unknown to begin with in a slasher movie). But, the movie does get interesting once the killer is revealed. Then you actually get the cat and mouse chase that finally builds up some tension.

Maybe I did go into the movie with too much expectation. After all, it is the "classic" that spawned a whole franchise and defined a genre. But I'm a bit disappointed by it, I was expecting more. I did enjoy it, that's not the problem, but it didn't tick the way I hoped it would. Maybe it'll click with one of the sequels. We'll see.
Rating:

Najemikon

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #358 on: October 11, 2009, 12:23:58 PM »
I feel exactly the same. How it even got to one sequel I will never understand, especially as the iconic form of Jason didn't appear until part 3...  :shrug:

Normally I avoid remakes, but I've got it at the back of my mind to give the new one a chance. It can't be much worse and you can rely on modern producers to cut to the chase quicker at least! :laugh:

RossRoy

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Re: RossRoy's Random Viewings
« Reply #359 on: October 12, 2009, 05:30:24 AM »
I feel exactly the same. How it even got to one sequel I will never understand, especially as the iconic form of Jason didn't appear until part 3...  :shrug:

That one's easy to answer. According to IMDb: "The film made $39,754,601 and had a budget of $550,000."


Normally I avoid remakes, but I've got it at the back of my mind to give the new one a chance. It can't be much worse and you can rely on modern producers to cut to the chase quicker at least! :laugh:

I'm with you on that. Somehow, the movie would probably benefit from cutting to the chase and getting Jason into full-on Jason outfit as fast as possible.