Monday, March 01, 2010

Hottarake no Shima – Haruka to Maho no Kagami

Oblivion Island: Haruka and the Magic Mirror (trailer)
Last weekend I went and saw the screening the New York International Childrens Film Festival had for Oblivion island, the latest from Japan's legendary Production I.G studio. Although they say its an all 3D movie, its actually a nicely combined 3D props and characters, with a combination of 2D and 3D backgrounds. Its a tricky thing to combine and I think they were really successful in executing it. The main character, Haruka has a nice, luscious Range Murata feel to her, (youve probably seen a lot of his characters on the covers of Udon publishings "Robot" magazine.) She's a feisty, really cute, typical seeming Japanese teen age heroine. She looked a little doll like in the eyes, but for me they really nailed the lips. Its an odd critique for sure, me focusing on the lips, but the attention to detail in the way they looked and were rigged made a huge impression on me- a lot of 3D animated characters lips are neglected, so bravo to you Production I.G for nailing the lips on that character. Her side kick companion Teo was fine, and all the typical villains and thugs, although very formulaic, didnt bother me as much as the mad rush and frantic pace the story took in the last 20 minutes- so much to resolve! So right, could of been edited, but all in all, I really enjoyed this film. I and the mass of very young viewers probably would have enjoyed it even more if it were 20 minutes shorter- an hour and half is a long time for a little kid, and a long time for a not so little kid as well!

Ill be attending quite a few more films at this festival and look forward posting a few of my impressions from each film- next up, the Secret Of Kells.

1 comment:

JC said...

the look is nice, but movement is always an issue with these films from Japan - they just dont' have our crazy budgets. thanks for the review Ian, looking forward to more.