Monday, March 03, 2014

Short Peace (this time, with subtitles)

Welp, I went to see Short Peace at the Angelika tonight and I took my mom. I think we should all be able to share anime with our parents and an anthology is as good as anything.

As this was only showing the one night, I suspect we were a test audience of some sort. I was the only one who filled out a card at the start, so I won two free tickets (You can't win if you don't play.) but I'm not sure what kind of feedback we were supposed to give. There were no previews. The sound was a little louder than it needed to be, but I don't think the turn-out was as good as they had expected (and that's why you're supposed to advertise), so there were fewer bodies to absorb the sound.

Luckily, this presentation was with subtitles. So! Let's see what we got right and what we didn't.

Spoilers!

More...

POSSESSIONS

What I missed at the beginning was the explanation that tools that are 100 years old gain a soul and become Tsukumogami.

Mom thought the kasa-obake were great, but she also collects frogs. The song they sing is basically "Here and there and everywhere. Get used up and thrown away." Our hero admires them before repairing them.

I was pretty much right about the cloth room, but the speech given is much creepier ("Am I still still pretty? Call me pretty. Mister, am I pretty?"). Once he's fixed up the ittan-momen, he asks to be released.

The final room, the prayer at the end was was on gratitude. "Thank you for your service." It was the recognition of use that saved him.

COMBUSTABLE

We never got any subtitles for the opening calligraphy.

The animation did a strange stutter at the start, but I think that's part of digital projection on the large screen. The kids are still adorable, but now you can make out the details.

What I did not realize the first time around was Matsuyoshi always wanted to be a fireman. When he first appears, he's holding a banner similar to what the fire brigade rushes around with and chanting "Make way! Make way!" When he sneaks out at night, it's to go watch a fire. After he's disowned (that still happens) he says he can be a fireman now.

The girl's name is Wakka (I'd called her Owaka) which means "water" in the Ainu language, so there's that.

Mom swears she's seen this story before, but not as an animated piece. We agree it's just one of those tales where there's probably multiple versions. We both agree this one has the best music and is the strongest piece.

And yes, I cried. Again.

GAMBO

Subtitles added absolutely nothing to this story except maybe people's names. It's still dumb.

FAREWELL TO ARMS

This had the most going on so subtitles added the most.

Gin (I'd called him Jin) has saved up all his money to buy four acres of vineyard. He promised to send us all a bottle of wine.

The brash kid I'd called Nobu (that's what it sounded like), but his name in the subtitles is Rum. The action is still pretty much the same for him; the only change I'd make is he insists on firing at the 'bot while the guy with the glasses is dragging him away.

Our guy with the glasses is named Marl (or Marle in the credits), but I thought his name was Maru. The reason he hits the 'bot with a green laser is to mark it for the drones, so he's not being dumb.

The 'bot is called a GONK. And Avery was right: there's only one. The underground was the original target of the journey, but they were side-tracked by the heat of the GONK and decided to take it out before proceeding.

Everyone knew about the missile on the train and they were going to just defuse it, but then the GONK showed up. As they couldn't disarm it, it had to be destroyed, but that went wonky due to being in a subway station.

The brochure handed to Marl at the end explained how "this is a rational war".

I will say, on the big screen, it's much harder to track what's going on. I can see a dub working OK for this (we're not asking for major dramatic performances from these folks), and that would make it easier to track what's going on.

All in all, if it does go into wider distribution, go and see it. It's worth it, even if it's only a little over an hour. Heck, take your mom.

2 comments:

Avery Davies said...

The "Am I pretty?" line in Possessions sounds like the Japanese urban legend of Kuchisake-onna, the slit-mouthed woman. In fact, when I first saw that, I'm pretty sure it was going to be something similar.

I can't see the opening to Farewell To Arms anything but a reference to Michael Bay, specifically Armageddon. The "manly men doing manly work" montage to overly hammy buttrock is even a cliche that even Bay has moved on from, but I'm certain that Hajime Katoki is either in on the joke or hasn't gotten the message that's become somewhat lame.

I'm actually inspired by some of the designs of Farewell. Having tried finding images of the original manga, Katoki's direction has updated them to the modern Magpul aesthetic of reinforcing ribs, slat armor, and Flat Dark Earth coating. The little winged drones that Marl throws out are essentially weaponized Raven UAVs based around an RPG warhead.

Also, to sperg for a moment, the "six sticks of dynamite" output of the GONK's laser puts it around the muzzle energy of the 152mm SU-152 assault gun or just twice as much as the APFSDS "Silver Bullet" fired from the Rheinmetall 120mm. It's not to be trifled with.

Danno Baker said...

Yeah, but what did your mom think of it?

 
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