Tag Archives: legal drama

Spring 2016 Anime Impressions

Since I’m around a year behind in my movie reviews, I’ll post a quick summary of my thoughts on what I’ve seen of this season’s anime and try to keep up to date there!

  • Kuromukuro (2 eps) – a sci-fi mecha show that seems just slightly more realistic in its depictions of characters lives than normal. Just slightly though, and now that I’ve said that, there will probably be a talking alien penguin in the next ep.
  • Macross Delta (1 ep) – I can’t resist Macross! Mecha plus singing and dancing, this time featuring an idol group (whose music quells some kind of berserker syndrome) and the pilots who protect them.
  • Gyakuten Saiban (4 eps) – I’ve played the first game and watched the live action movie, so this series is probably just a retread. The animation isn’t very good, and the translation I’m watching idiotically uses the localized names. However, this series has been fun so far.
  • Hundred (1 ep) – This looks like some kind of standard action-sci-fi harem show, with a very girly boy best friend.
  • Koutetsujou no Kabaneri (2 eps)  – Set in a steampunk zombie apocalypse, the production values are high and there’s some interesting ideas here – though the main character is a bit annoying and the walled cities are reminiscent of Shingeki no Kyojin. The heroine (?) seems cool though.
  • Kiznaiver (3 eps) – I’m watching this one because it’s by Trigger, and after 3 episodes I still don’t know what’s going on.
  • Netoge no Yome wa Onnanoko Janai to Omotta (3 eps) – This MMO-related comedy is probably my guilty pleasure of the season, with the MMO-addicted heroine ranting about how リア充 (normal, non-otaku people with girl/boyfriends) should all just die. There’s enough cringe-humour to keep me coming back so far.
  • Re Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu (3 eps) – The production quality on this light novel adaptation is high (I particularly like how the lighting changes over time, and how Nouto Mamiko’s character moves), and the setup is strange but intriguing; though the Japanese preference for low fantasy here makes you wonder about the significance of the beginning. The light-novel talkiness of the characters does get a bit annoying, especially when they talk themselves into trouble, but that’s what you get from the genre I suppose.
  • Sailor Moon Crystal third season (3 eps) – The animation has improved massively from the last two seasons, and transformations are no longer CGI. Maybe the studio realised the demand for Sailor Moon and decided to pony up cash? The storyline is a little bit more complex this time too.
  • Terraformars Revenge (4 eps) – This was my brainless action series in the last season, but it seems the plot stepped up a little now, so it’s taking more of my attention.

 

 

My favourites so far are Koutetsujou no Kabaneri, Re Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu, and (almost certainly) Macross Delta.

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Gyakuten Saiban 2012 Film

I’m way, way behind on reviews so I’ll keep this brief: Gyakuten Saiban is Takahashi Miike’s adaptation of the first game of the courtroom adventure mystery series. It covers the main storyline and refers to all the cases in the game, and cleans up a bit of the plot (which I think an improvement). Of course seeing the real life not-toned-down-at-all version of an exaggerated courtroom drama is not for everyone: there are scenery chewing performances all round, and some flashy steampunk technology. The mysteries are still intact, so you can puzzle along to most of the pieces and figure it out yourself.

If you enjoy the series, the movie is an enjoyable adaptation that’s just as silly as the game – but you’ll probably already know the plot…

My Cousin Vinny

I had been recommended this movie from a few quarters, so after beginning with kids on a road trip I was surprised to discover that it transitioned into a courtroom comedy/drama. To be honest I wasn’t sure what to make of it (other than Marisa Tomei being amazing). Well, I guess it really demonstrates the cultural divide within America, how ridiculously arbitrary the court system is (particularly the judge’s powers and the rules of court), and that Joe Pesci has had roles outside of Home Alone. I did like that the movie ended with cultural reconciliation.

12 Angry Men

I hate preachy movies, I hate depressing movies, I hate overdramatic movies, and I really hate preachy, depressing, overdramatic movies. So it was with great trepidation that I sat down to watch this black-and-white 50s classic with the foreboding title.

I was pleasantly surprised by the old-style naturalistic acting and direction, the minimalist setup (99% of the movie takes place in the jury room, with almost all the information available to the viewer), and the detective-style clues. There were no annoying political screeds.

I enjoyed the negotiation, the navigation of the personalities and motivations, and the logical reasoning involved in the story.