Digital Hierarchy Movie Reviews
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Fortunately, though, I was completely wrong. I found her to be cute, innocent, and completely free-spirited. She's an excellent and endearing heroine that's by no means perfect. The boy she loves is Yuusuke, a (startlingly) feminine-looking high schooler that's living on his own while his father is out of the country on business.
Sounds really simple, right? Boy meets girl, boy loves girl, boy joins girl's family in defeating a giant daruma/rice-cooker. Oop, hold up there. Good thing for the viewer that Tennimon doesn't seem to follow any strictly conventional formula. While during some scenes you'll think to yourself, "I know the gist of this" and be correct, there's always some twist, some quirky charm that makes this series different. Noelle's family simply must be seen to believe; each of them seem to have a fully-fleshed personality, instead of being used as mere static background characters.
The animation is beautiful, and yes, it's done with conventional cels! The colors are so crisp and bright and, well, *shiny* that they would lead one to believe that Tennimon was animated digitally; but no, those are hand-painted cels you're looking at. The DVD's quality is top-notch, as well. (It even includes things like translation notes, a real bonus for us purist buffs!)
If there is a flaw, it's that the show is a little *too* sugary. A friend of mine once said that she could only stand so much Tennimon at a time; too much was prone to make her teeth ache. If you can stand excessive cuteness, lots and lots of pink, and plenty of "wai!"ing, (all of which are mostly from Noelle-chan) Tenshi ni Narumon is a good choice for you.
The plot (understand, Japanese cartoons sometime have quirky and erratic plots)is: A stork carrying a new angel is attacked, and the angel inside splits into 3 parts. We won't know what happened to the other 2 parts for a while, but one apparently ends up in the demon world and raised by the Munsters, for want of a better description.
A teenage boy whose parents have left him in Japan while they work overseas is enjoying his first day of independance when he comes across a girl naked in the park; this girl is Noelle, one of the pieces of the complete angel. She immediately falls for Yu-ske and declares him her husband. He considers her nuts and runs away to school, where she ends up at later as a student.
Later, when Yu-ske rides his bike home, he finds the Munsters have re-decorated his house (did they ever), and Noelle is part of this family. He's introduced to them as her future husband, and they inform him they're moving in, having left the demon world. Strange stuff, and not just the obvious. The family has dances for practically every occasion.
Meanwhile, there's an evil...Harliquin that desires Noelle because she's imperfect (he has a thing for imperfection) and stops at nothing to have her in his possession. Of course, this involves numerous kidnap attempts by his minions and the family's battles against them. Again, funny and wierd.
I'm glossing over a LOT of stuff, but that's the beauty of Anime; so much goes on in just 1 episode you look at it more than once.
The disc comes with both the original Japanese and English dubbed. As far as I'm concerned, it's one of the better dubbing efforts by far, sticking very close to the original translation. Moreover, Noelle's voice actress for English is a dead ringer for the Japanese one, which is great.
The animation is clean and smooth, with abstraction only when the story calls for it.
This series is great for kids 8 and up; just a tad risque in some places, but always in good taste and never overt. Parents who are already into similar things will enjoy the quirkiness.
Definately worth purchasing.
The show hits full stride with Mark Knopfler's exquisite "Brothers in Arms," which segues nicely into "Money for Nothing" with guest vocals by Sting, who then performs two hits from his Police years. And while Elton John and Eric Clapton form the centerpiece of the concert (especially Clapton and Knopfler's acoustic "Layla"), Paul McCartney anchors the show with a spectacular four-song conclusion. Phil Collins's expert drumming is matched throughout by legendary percussionist Ray Kooper, and McCartney's fully orchestrated "Golden Slumbers" is a genuine show-stopper, followed by a "Hey Jude" sing-along with everyone on stage. They all follow McCartney's lead for a rockin' rendition of "Kansas City" (which the Beatles had performed as early as 1960), by which time Music for Montserrat had given its royal audience a show they would never forget. --Jeff Shannon
In addition to the great performances, the DVD captures much of the fun and comradery between these legends -- it was like watching a bunch of old friends playing for kicks.
While most of the magic was captured, there were some great songs and British wit that didn't make the final edit -- Midge Ure doing an acoustic "Vienna" and Mark Knopfler opening with "The Theme to Local Hero" are two they should have found room for.
One of the more amazing moments was hearing McCartney say that he hadn't performed at RAH in "34 years to the day." Beatles fans will recall the clip of that performance when Lennon asked "the people in the cheap seats to clap their hands...and the rich folks to rattle their jewels" (a sly reference to those in the Royal box).
Highly recommend it.
When viewing this movie keep in mind, I can not think of another movie who has pulled off such impecable quality with this minimal budget. Yes if the movie had a multi million $$ budget then there would have been all the special effects to knock your socks off, but this is reality and it had less than $25,000 to work with.
The point is to make a movie that one can be proud of and have it distributed over AMAZON.COM. Wow, BOO made it to AMAZON.COM!!
Independent Films struggle with competing with Hollywood. So be a supporter of Indie Films, show support by ordering a copy today.
Here is the scoop on both versions...
-Requires Windows 95/98 to run. (I don't know if it will work with Windows 2000 or Windows Me)
-Has smoother game play. From what I have heard from other people, the game play on this version is practically flawless.
-I don't think that this version has the "watch" feature, which lets you view the entire animation without actually playing the game.
-Does NOT require a computer to run.
-When I use this on my Sony DVD player that is hooked to my TV, the game play is painful. There are 2-3 second gaps between moves that makes the game almost unbearable. However, when I play this on my computer's DVD drive, the game play is quite good. There are still gaps between moves, but only about 1/4 of a second or so.
-Has a "watch" feature that lets you view the entire animation without playing it. This is very cool!
-Works on MOST DVD players, except some Toshiba models.
WHY I BOUGHT THIS VERSION:
Even though the game play is better on the DVD-ROM version, I decided to buy the DVD-VIDEO version for a couple of reasons...
-The "watch" feature was important to me. I wanted the ability to just sit back and take in the whole beautiful animation without having to do sword, left, left, sword, etc.
-I wanted this purchase to last. In other words, I didn't want to be forced to buy a new version of this product when I switch my computer system over to Windows 2000 (or whatever Bill Gates comes up with next).
ABOUT THE ACTUAL GAME:
Think of it as Dragon's Lair meets Alice in Wonderland meets Time Machine. It is VERY bizzare, but VERY cool. If you were a fan of the original Dragon's Lair, then you will probably love this. The animation looks exactly like it did in the arcade. I am hooked on it.
The visuals defy literal description, as the Residents and their various directors undertake a dazzling multimedia journey, combining film, video, still photography, computer animation, and more to create images that range from dark, surreal, and grotesque to funny, endearingly wacky, absurd, and even beautiful (it's not a bit surprising that some of this stuff now resides in New York's Museum of Modern Art). There's only one Residents--and while that may be a good thing, so is this remarkable, fascinating document. --Sam Graham
So grab this one while stocks last. You can never know how long such anabashed beauty/creativity will remain at your disposal.
You've been warned.
Of course, their most famous works are here: "Third Reich and Roll" (which tells the story of the rise of rock music beutifully and with humor); "Hello Skinny"; "One Minute Movies" (four songs from THE COMMERCIAL ALBUM); and "Songs for Swinging Larvae" (by incredibly weird British band and Residents pals Renaldo and the Loaf).
Some of these are interesting mostly for Res fans: "Where is She?" is as disturbing as it is funny. This goes double for "Just for You", the last movement of a piece called "Disfigured Night" (a clever play on Schoenberg's "Transfigured Night"), which was conceived for a German television show. Even funnier than the Residents' weird stage presence are the facial reactions of some of the audience members (one girl has her eyes closed tightly, her hands clasped together as if in prayer... that reaction never fails to make me laugh out loud).
So, my overall verdict: if you're not a Residents fan, don't buy it. If you're not, though, I wouldn't imagine you'd even consider spending the money on it. So if you are, it's a good investment. God knows how much music there is here: original songs, plus remakes, plus the hidden bits... it's a dream come true! And don't miss the "commercials" between songs; they're great!
The only problem is that no effort was made to clean up the video or the sound, and the original prints from which this DVD was made seem to have been in poor shape in places. A new release, with the latest in digital remastering, will be most welcome.
Yes, today that would be an overused plot. Yes, it's not very interactive. But keep in mind - the game is almost 20 years old - it made its arcade debut in 1983. It made jaws drop (especially mine - seeing it in 84 as a 4 year old - hey a cartoon! It's a GAME?) - amazing animation - and you CONTROLLED it! Of course, it's a watch the video press a button game - some newer games today even use a similar control sequence.
Anyone who remembers this game should buy this - anyone who doesn't - rent it from a Blockbuster (it's usually in the Playstation 2 section) and give it a whirl once. You'll likely want it in your collection - even if it's just so you have a "DVD that's actually a game". As the other reviews state - it's a riot at parties, especially if you have parties with nostalgic arcade-goers who remember the game well ;-)
Why'd I rate it a 4-star? Because on many DVD players, you'll get 'pauses' every so often - something of a hardware limitation, however.
As always, read the other reviews before making your final decision. After all, I'm biased (Now if only I could remember how to pass that one level!)
I ran the dvd on my Xbox and also my standard el-cheapo korean clone DVD player, it played like the original and brought back some real memories. I would recommend it to any game freak out there, the additional material is excellent.
On the reported second delays commented in other reviews, I was hesitant on getting this DVD due to these but I am happy to say I did not experience these issues at all. To those people.. buy a console (PS2 & XBOX) and run it on this, incidently the DVD is not region coded.
What a buzz I finally finished the game and take great joy in "up, right, sword, up, down" all night long.