It’s The Four-Year Anniversary of Fragglepuss.com!
Before I get into the anime review I just wanted to throw out a few thanks. I’ve been posting anime reviews for four years now and I wouldn’t still be doing it without the support of so many people. Thanks to everyone that’s read the reviews, even if it’s only been a single one. Part of the reason I started reviewing anime was to give suggestions on what to watch based on what you enjoy. If a single person has watched an anime based on one of my reviews, I’m happy.
Thanks to my fellow Anime Happy Hour podcasters and panel crew: Breanne Evans, Lindsay Starke, Brittany Evans, and Alec Unsicker. Not only do they give me hot tips on quality anime to watch, but they are so fun to chat anime with and keep my interest piqued on everything geeky.
An extra special thanks to Breanne, who has always been so supportive in all I do and always pushes me to do the things I love.
One last shout-out goes to the members of the SLC Anime group. We’ve been meeting up and chatting anime for almost four years now. I’ve watched several anime that I would not watch otherwise due to suggestions from the group. I wouldn’t have watched Madoka Magica if not for the group, and now it’s one of my favorite anime.
Here’s to another year of reviewing anime!
In This Corner of the World / Kono Sekai no Katasumi ni
Review by: John Fragglepuss Evans
Genre: Historical, Drama, Soul Crushing
First Released: November 2016, 126-minute film
Summary: Suzu Urano is an innocent and loving child growing up in 1930s Hiroshima. She loves drawing more than anything. We follow as she grows up and moves to the small town of Kure, marrying Shuusaku Houjou. Suzu lives with Houjou and his family as the 1940s dawn on them and Japan is at war. Life becomes increasingly difficult for Suzu and her new family. They are simply attempting to survive as rations lessen and air raids increase. In 1945 intense bombings reach Kure with devastating consequences for Suzu and family, forever changing their lives. Suzu survives through an impossible situation that would have destroyed others beyond repair.
In This Corner of the World is a homework movie, meaning it’s one you need to watch once in your life. The message is beautifully told and makes you feel for the people that were involved, but it’s difficult to watch because it’s so real. The content is heavy and cruel while accurately portraying the horrific events that occurred during World War II. The scenes in the film are based on old photos, documents, and memories of living people that experienced the bombing in Hiroshima. The story is emotional in the way you watch Suzu grow up from a small child to getting married and moving away. The bulk of the story is in 1944 and 1945, but the film begins before and ends after that time.
The film is beautifully animated, with nature and traditional culture being contrasted with cruel and horrid war. Green fields are turned into burnt bombing grounds and houses are reduced to rubble. The artwork is mainly hand-drawn, with limited CGI with the background of some battle sequences. The characters also bring out contrasting sides of the film and show the way war affects people. Suzu remains incredibly positive, especially considering the circumstances, while others become distraught or downright angry at the situation.
You might enjoy this if: You are ready to watch World War II from the perspective of a Japanese civilian that is just trying to survive. The film gives a moving message about persevering in an impossible situation when there’s little you can do. It’s not a war film, it’s focused on being a story about everyday life struggles. It just happens to be set during wartime, when the struggles are the most intense.
You might not like it if: You are not emotionally ready for this type of film. It rightfully has a significant amount of sadness and heartache. You’ll be shedding tears by the end and should be in an emotionally ready place to do so.
Note to the Viewer: In This Corner of the World won the Best Animation Award at the Japan Academy Awards in addition to countless other accolades.
In This Corner of the World Trailer
AMV – What About Us by Lust Music Videos
(Warning, the AMV contains spoilers. Watch the film before the AMV)