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Old 2010-12-21, 22:47   Link #1
Simon
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Showa Monogatari (2011 movie and TV anime)

昭和物語 ("Shōwa-era Story") - animated movie and TV series

Official site - ANN movie listing - ANN TV series listing

From the ANN news article, slightly edited:

Quote:
The production company THINK Corporation announced on Thursday that the Showa Monogatari (Showa-Era Story) film and television series will launch next year. The original story follows the human drama of the Yamazaki family in Tokyo in the year Showa 39 (1964) — the year that the city hosted the Summer Olympics. According to Think, the "TV manga" is "the world's first anime aimed at seniors," although it is also targeted at families. ... The film, which is about 100 minutes long, will open in Japan on January 29, 2011. The television series of 13 30-minute episodes will follow in April, although a television special will air at the end of 2010.
Staff

Director: Murakami Masahiro (movie) / Kugimiya Hiroshi (TV series) / Tōkō Matsuhiro 東郷 光宏 (TV series)
Producer: Takeuchi Hiroaki / 宋美善 (listed on the staff page but I don't know the reading for the kanji)
Screenplay: Hirano Yasushi / Tomita Sukehiro / Arakawa Naruhisa / Maruo Miho
Character design / animation director: Yanagino Tatsuo
Sound director: Honda Yasunori

Animation production: Wao World

Cast

Yamazaki Yūko (山崎 裕子): Fukuen Misato
Yamazaki Kōhei (山崎 公平): Chiba Shōya
Yamazaki Taiichi (山崎 太一): Aoki Makoto
Yamazaki Yūzō (山崎 有三): Matsumoto Yasunori
Yamazaki Kanoko (山崎 佳乃子): Tamagawa Sakiko
Yamazaki Yoshi (山崎 ヨシ): Kyōda Hisako
Tashiro Gorō (田代 吾郎): Tsukada Masaaki
Takayanagi Ryō (高柳 良): Takagi Wataru
Sawawatari Yūsuke ( 沢渡 裕介) : Yoshino Hiroyuki

Spoiler for 15-second trailer:

Although the TV series is due to air in April, the broadcast schedule says four episodes will preview starting 2010-12-30 in the lead-up to the movie's release on 2011-01-29. It's not clear how the movie's storyline relates to the TV series, e.g. which one is set first.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to it. While historical family dramas are a staple of live-action TV in Japan, it's not often we see them animated. The cast and crew bring age and experience, and going by the target demographic it won't be out to push the usual otaku-centric buttons.

For those interested in such things, a few thoughts on the 1964 setting:

Spoiler for proof that brevity really is the soul of wit:
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Old 2011-01-05, 00:15   Link #2
Guardian Enzo
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This looks interesting. There's already a positive blog review up, but I haven't evens seen a raw yet. I strongly suspect no one will sub this one, but I hope they do - it's certainly different from any other series this season.
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Old 2011-01-05, 07:06   Link #3
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Thanks for the information my brother Fadil
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Old 2011-01-07, 22:36   Link #4
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I have only just heard about this series but I am definitely in. I love slice of life anime like this. I really hope someone will sub it if it's not going to be on a simulcast but I am a little worried no one will or at best it will subbed extremely slowly.
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Old 2011-01-14, 20:18   Link #5
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this looks interesting enough to give it a try
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Old 2011-01-14, 20:39   Link #6
Guardian Enzo
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Well, at least we have a raw now - though I won't be surprised if no one subs it.
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Old 2011-01-15, 16:50   Link #7
Simon
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I enjoyed the first two episodes, even though I could only follow the obvious parts of the dialogue. They've really put the work into those detailed backgrounds - I can imagine lots of "omg I remember that!" moments for older Japanese viewers. The way they wove historic photos into the OP was also pretty neat (brings back memories of the Abenobashi ED sequence).

For those of us who didn't grow up in 1960s Japan, well I think Kōhei's relationship with his father is a story as old as the human race. This has me totally stumped though - is that some form of home healthcare, or is it his punishment for spending the shopping money on manga?

Maybe someone will sub the movie, even if the TV series gets ignored...
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Old 2011-01-15, 17:16   Link #8
Guardian Enzo
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That would seem to be an instance where subs are necessary because I don't know WTF is going on there...

Last edited by Guardian Enzo; 2011-01-15 at 17:53.
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Old 2011-02-18, 13:33   Link #9
Dop
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Just saw two episodes of this, where I could only pick up the odd gist here and there due to my limited and practically non-existent Nihongo skills...
But it looked interesting. It's a shame it looks like nobody is fansubbing this, as it would make a nice change from the usual otaku fare.

Although I am wondering just what the hell is going on at the 7:30 point in episode 2... I mean, he's spent his mum's change on manga but WHAT IS SHE DOING???
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Old 2011-02-18, 22:15   Link #10
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I definitely got my sights set on this. It's also interesting to see the Showa era portrayed in anime even if most of them seem to deal exclusively with the fallout of World War II.
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Old 2011-04-21, 16:39   Link #11
Guardian Enzo
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FYI, we finally have a sub for this. Looking forward to watching the first ep.

Edit: Blog post. I enjoyed the premiere, though it won't suit every taste. I especially loved both the OP and the "casual stroll" at the end.

Last edited by Guardian Enzo; 2011-04-21 at 18:27.
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Old 2011-04-22, 08:38   Link #12
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If there's ever an anime that's not really targeted at foreign audiences, this would be it. A nostalgia trip back to the 1960s, at the time of Japan's coming-of-age. So, it's perhaps appropriate that the series "proper" starts at this point, just before the elder son's own coming-of-age ceremony.

I reminded right away of Isao Takahata's movies but, thankfully, the tone is more even here, and not so obviously elegiac. Not necessarily a feeling of, "woe is us, the past was so much better"; just more a feeling of wistful reminiscence, the kind you'd get when flipping through your parents' photo albums.

Like Guardian_Enzo, I very much enjoyed the "walking tour" epilogue, and the flashbacks to 1960s Japan in the OP. I have my own reasons for enjoying the episode, as social and economic developments here in South-east Asia mirrored Japan's own, albeit about 10 years later.

So things like the emerging tension between a younger generation aspiring to bigger things rather than inheriting a family business; the highs and lows of a multi-generational family living under one roof; simple festival observances like New Year's prayers and allowances (similar observances exist here, though practised differently and at different times of the year), there all ring a bell for me.

The interesting thing, therefore, would be to observe how Western audiences react to this. Historians and sociologists, or people who have an interest in Japan, would like this anime, no doubt, but how would they relate to it, I wonder, since the issues are largely dissimilar to those of their own societies.
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Old 2011-04-22, 10:44   Link #13
Dop
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A big THANK YOU to Hatsuyuki-Hadena for subbing this. I hope they continue.

While I guess for the target audience it's very much a nostalgia thing, that's pretty much lost on everyone who isn't Japanese and old enough to remember the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.

For the rest of is, it could be an interesting look at what life was like there and then. While in many anime we're glimpsing another culture through its fiction, this promises to be more true to life.
So it's a show I'm hoping to see more of.

Love the OP, with the blend from present day, to past time, to animation. Absolutely loved the little stroll at the end. That was wonderful.
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Old 2011-04-22, 12:02   Link #14
Guardian Enzo
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Also kudos to Wao World for using real kids for the child roles. That's expensive, risky, and usually offers a better sense of realism.
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Old 2011-04-22, 12:12   Link #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dop View Post
While I guess for the target audience it's very much a nostalgia thing, that's pretty much lost on everyone who isn't Japanese and old enough to remember the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. For the rest of is, it could be an interesting look at what life was like there and then. While in many anime we're glimpsing another culture through its fiction, this promises to be more true to life.
Well, the thing about nostalgia is that pretty much every society loves recalling its halcyon days. The United States has its fair share of shows that tap this longing, the most recent of which would be Mad Men, for example.

So, it would be interesting, I feel, not just to see how life looked in Japan at the time, but also to reflect on how things were unfolding elsewhere at the same time. Events in Japan weren't happening in isolation, after all. The 1960s were a tumultuous time in world history. It wasn't just Japan that was coming of age — so were the people of the baby boomer generation, everywhere around the world.

Looking back, one can't help but be amazed by the earth-shaking events of the past that changed the future irrevocably. By comparison, everyday life today does seem like a dull, never-ending present. In a way, Francis Fukuyama was right: History ended with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Soviet Union's collapse. There isn't a "grand narrative" any more.
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Old 2011-04-24, 01:05   Link #16
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I've only seen the first episode so far, but I'm liking it, despite the summary making it out to be a rather boring show only for old people.
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Old 2011-04-24, 03:10   Link #17
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I just finished watching the first episode.

First thing off the top of my head is that, even with the historical nuances, the setting still feels very contemporary. The characters and their lives don't seem like they would be out of place in today's world at all. Though there's some definite contrast between the present and the past, such as the comparison photos in the OP, I think it's very easy to forget that this is 1964 and not 2011.

I saw that in Kouhei's character in particular. Things like waiting up for New Years (while failing miserably ) and getting anxious over allowance are very familiar things for me, though it would be a few months later for me than it would be for him. I saw plenty of parallels between my family and his, particularly between Kouhei and myself, so that had a bit more impact for me. Fortunately for my parents, I wasn't sneaking out and looking at naughty pictures. Considering my background, it might be a little easier for me to relate to some the cultural issues that this series will pick up on that my heritage and theirs share.

That said, I enjoyed the historical references and throwbacks, even though I'm sure I only managed to catch a few of them. I know I smiled at Ryou's line of work, for one.

Going back to the Yamazaki family and friends, I have a positive opinion on how they've been set up so far. The most evident thing, of course, is that they're very normal. You could probably easily find similar people in life if you looked. I do want to comment on the elder brother, Taichi; I had a very bad first impression of him due to his fight with the father, but it's actually looks like they're pretty similar people. I still only have a mixed opinion about him, so I'm looking forward to the coming-of-age next episode to see how he'll further shape up.

Like just about everyone else in this thread, I enjoyed the OP (and the previously mentioned comparison shots) and the tour epilogue. For those who have watched the second episode, is that a continuing thing or is it restricted to this premiere episode?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Looking back, one can't help but be amazed by the earth-shaking events of the past that changed the future irrevocably. By comparison, everyday life today does seem like a dull, never-ending present. In a way, Francis Fukuyama was right: History ended with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Soviet Union's collapse. There isn't a "grand narrative" any more.
I think that they might have felt the same way about their time, just as future generations might think back on the events of our own time and feel their flying-skateboard present is a little dull. In any case, we're all young; I think our narrative can become just as grand.
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Old 2011-04-24, 12:11   Link #18
Guardian Enzo
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I did see one thing that felt very anachronistic - the high-five between Kohei and his sister after they got the extra New Year's money. Was the high-five really around in 1964, much less in Tokyo?
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Old 2011-04-24, 14:57   Link #19
JackALope044
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
I did see one thing that felt very anachronistic - the high-five between Kohei and his sister after they got the extra New Year's money. Was the high-five really around in 1964, much less in Tokyo?
Checked the wiki page on high-fives.

This probably is anachronistic, but it seems rather excusable, in my opinion.
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Old 2011-04-24, 20:06   Link #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
I did see one thing that felt very anachronistic - the high-five between Kohei and his sister after they got the extra New Year's money. Was the high-five really around in 1964, much less in Tokyo?
??? I have seen people from a much more backwater place than Tokyo (even from back in 1964) go through the gesture known as high five without knowing anything about it. I think its kinda universal o.0.

And this should be in current series now.
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