Setting is where it starts (From Up on Poppy Hill)

From Up on Poppy Hill is a Ghibli film directed by Goro Miyazaki, I hate to say it, but it’s one that many people tend to shove under the mat, saying that it’s plot is clunky and could’ve been done better.  And while I agree-yes, the two plot lines could’ve been woven together better and yes, the ending was rather dissatisfying, people tend to forget about something that this movie is outstanding in-setting.


Setting is where the story takes place, we spent a lot of our elementary school years answering the questions: who are the characters, what happens, and where is the setting.  The setting is comprised of two components: where and when does this take place?

Now that’s obviously a very oversimplified version of what setting can really be.  A good setting sets the tone for the whole movie.  It is often a very overlooked part of any story to be told, and shouldn’t be neglected in anyway.  It’s what immerses an audience into the story, and gives the whole movie it’s feel and vibe.

Continue reading


Simplicity in Movement – Subete ga F ni Naru: The Perfect Insider (and some tidbits about art)

a/n: I wrote this ages ago and never published it…but here it is 🙂

It’s a strange topic to cover how characters move in a specific anime.  I guess I could call it directing, but what I’m discussing in this post is the way the art director chooses to have the characters move.  In many cases, the each studio has it’s own specific art style

KyotoAnimation is praised (quite lavishly) for their beautiful art, and indeed it is beautiful.  It utilizes light and colors quite vibrantly.  The fluid movements of the character emphasizes the flow of life and creates something gentle and pleasant to watch.  All together, this creates quite an astounding image.

Meanwhile Shaft uses lots of close ups, sharp cuts and movements and still movements juxtaposed with dramatic movements to emphasize the drama and the sharpness.  Their style is very punctuated.  At times, often, they choose to have the character move very little and use the movement of the frame, clothes and hair to convey movement.  It creates something dynamic and different to watch. (Let’s not forget about the very famous Shaft head tilt)

But enough about Shaft and KyoAni.  We’re here to talk about The Perfect Insider (which is what I’ll refer to this anime as).  It’s produced by A-1 Pictures who has created a myriad of animes including Sword Art Online, AnoHana, Fairy Tail, Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, and a whole brigade of very popular anime.  Each has their unique look, and all with fantastic art.

While I’ve only watched a handful of their anime,  The Perfect Insider is a standout in terms of art within their line up.  Not in the way where the art is very unique like KyoAni’s or Shafts but the way the chose to implement movement of the characters as a tool.


Continue reading