2001: A Space Odyssey- 50th anniversary

On April 3rd of 1968, Arthur C. Clarke’s bestselling novel came to the cinema screen and made film history, thanks to that famous director, Stanley Kubrick. This movie in fact, was nominated for four Oscar awards, won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects. He definitely deserved that award.

From the naked dawn of man, to the future of 1999 and 2001, on space travel, a black monolith had appeared twice. On the Earth where the apes became aware on, and how it made a loud noise to the astronauts on the surface of the moon.

Months later, the back monolith affected one of the astronauts while on the long voyage to Jupiter. But before that, while his crew were in cryogenics, and how his partner was outside the spacecraft, the computer HAL-9000, malfunctioned. He killed the three members in cryogenics, and his partner while outside the spacecraft.

He had to disconnect HAL-9000. And when he found out about the truth, he knew on what he was going to face on. Which was why by reaching Jupiter, and left to investigate, he got himself into a vortex. And as he grew older and older in a bedroom, he was ready to die when he was transformed all of a sudden. Turned into a space baby in a fetus orb of light. He gazed at the Earth and became something that no astronomer had ever laid eyes on.

Although I do sometimes think on what happens if that orb of light was broken, and all of a sudden, that space baby would start crying…

In this movie, are Kier Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Douglas Rain, and as a cameo, Stanley Kubrick’s daughter Vivian as Dr. Heywood Floyd’s daughter.

With special music such as Also sprach Zarathustra by Richard Strauss and the Blue Danube by Johann Strauss II, no wonder this made cinema history. In fact, they did a sequel in which that was nominated for five Oscar awards. “2010: The Year We Made Contact” in 1984. Starring Roy Scheider, John Lithgow, and Bob Balaban.

50 years later, in April of 2018, now comes the 50th anniversary of that Kubrick masterpiece. Although they did do a 40th anniversary screening in 2008, but Vivian Kubrick received an award in honor of her father that year.

By celebrating that movie, filmmakers such as Steven Spielberg and George Lucas have been interviewed while Kier Dullea talked about both Arthur C. Clarke and how Stanley Kubrick made his novel come to life.

“In an infinite and eternal universe, the point is, anything is possible”

-Stanley Kubrick

He was really a film genius at that time by making that movie. And his other masterpieces based on novels that were Oscar nominated, as some such as this and “Barry Lyndon” were Oscar winners. Except for “Lolita” and “Eyes Wide Shut” in which Kirk Douglas in his own words, ‘lousiest movies ever’.

But no matter how Kubrick did to his movies, “2001: A Space Odyssey” remains to be the most famous movie in cinema history. So here’s to 50 years, and to Stanley Kubrick’s most famous masterpiece…….

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Stargate (1994)

This was the original movie that started that sci-fi TV business on its franchise.

From the director who did “Independence Day” and “Independence Day: Resurgence”, Kurt Russell, and Erick Avari were the only guys that I know of in this movie.

A star-gate, is a ringed shaped portal that can take you to a far away distance in outer space. An Egyptologist and a bunch of soldiers found one, activated it, and accidentally got themselves warped onto an alien desert planet, that they weren’t sure on. They had to find it again in order to escape back to Earth, or the aliens will grind their bones to bits. Alien gods too if you ask me.

So for a success, I give this 9/10 stars.

‘She and Her Cat’ by Makoto Shinkai

Years before anime director Makoto Shinkai did the movies, “Your Name”, “Children Who Chase Lost Voices”, and “5 Centimetres Per Second”, he started off as a manga author. This is one of them, as it tells about adulthood and how you do not want to be lonely for the rest of your life.

‘She and Her Cat’ tells the story about Miyu, a woman who lives alone in an apartment, as adopted a white cat named Chobi. It was on a rainy spring day as she took her in, and had the only friend that she would care for in this world.

From facing harsh times at work, to how there can be so much in adulthood to deal with, her cat that she adopted came in and helped her. That made her heart to be filled with happiness, as she had began to admire that feline as her only pet to have in this world.

They did made a five minute short, and a very short TV show adaption with only four episodes, that are 8 minutes long. Very well done for sure.

I do thank manga author/anime director Makoto Shinkai for this book that really did. Cause by dealing with adulthood before you go for your careers, you’ll need an apartment and a pet friend to have.

And as for that very short TV show adaption, only in Japanese, that I rate as a film/tv critic, 10/10 stars and an ‘A++’.

A tribute to Isao Takahata

In April of 2018, by the time Isao Takahata had died at the age of 82, the news had spread all over the Internet. Studio Ghibli fans became shocked and very sad to hear the news. They did tribute videos in dedication to him. This is one of them, thanks to a lucky subscriber on YouTube.

It shows the filmography that he did as an anime director, producer, and everything that he did. Especially when he helped Hayao Miyazaki on his masterpieces, and how Hayao Miyazaki helped Isao Takahata with his masterpieces.

Although it was a shame that only two that he did were left out Oscar nominated. But he definitely needed Oscar awards including his Honorary Oscar award.

With the ending music from “Only Yesterday” by piano, these are his masterpieces….

R.I.P. Isao Takahata. We shall miss you very much indeed…

In This Corner of the World (2016)

Based on the manga book by Fumiyo Kōno, and directed by Sunao Katabuchi, assistant director to Hayao Miyazaki for “Kiki’s Delivery Service”, this was premiered for a 3-day event at Cineplex, at one movie theatre in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. The same movie theatre where “Fairy Tail: Dragon Cry” and only six Studio Ghibli movies were premiered. South Keys.

This masterpiece, is about a young woman named Suzu. Who lived in two places in Hiroshima, Japan. Hiroshima City where the bomb was dropped, and Kure, Hiroshima, where they saw the mushroom cloud. Set in the 1930’s to the 1940’s, this tells on how Suzu, became a married woman as she and her relatives, try to survive air raid attacks, and how the bombs were dropping all around.

Then it came to how the Hiroshima bomb was dropped, as they were shocked. The war against Japan cane to an end, as things had to change for them. I can’t tell you for what happened to Suzu, because well, that would be telling, wouldn’t it? Besides, this is one of these anime movies that I’m deeply inspired on. Since I got into Studio Ghibli movies, I was inspired deeply by them. This one right here is really inspiring.

So for a success on this anime movie, 10/10 stars and an ‘A++’.

Ghost in the Shell (1995)

“…a stunning work of speculative fiction, the first truly adult animation film to reach a level of literary and visual excellence.”

-James Cameron, director of Titanic.

This anime masterpiece made me speechless after watching this. But this definitely beats the live action adaption in 2017. The one with Scarlett Johansson.

Based on the manga by Masamune Shirow, and directed by Mamoru Oshii, Major Mokoto (portrayed by Mimi Woods), happens to be an assault team leader for a futuristic city. She can hack into computers and anything digital. One part that she never did was by hacking herself in another android.

From her invisibility, communicating telepathically, and ability to take on bandits, she was lead to fighting that walking tank. Very powerful with massive guns, that vehicle can wipe out a platoon in 2.7 seconds.

She almost died by sacrificing herself to destroy both the tank, and another android like herself. But with the help of a friend, she made it out and was repaired back to the way she was.

I was shocked for how it ended, but it does turn out that this became one of the greatest anime films of all time. So I’m giving this R-rated anime film 10/10 stars. A straight ‘A’.

Top 8 Anime Feline Characters

They’re adorable and cute when you get into these anime felines. By looking at them, they are amazing. Especially good ones in this list. And these are the top 8 anime felines…

8. Spinner Sun (Cardcaptors). Portrayed by Colin Murdock, owned by Ruby Moon and Eli, he appeared in Season 3 of Cardcaptors. At first, he is kind and concerned about the cards that Sakura has, but doesn’t like being called names from Ruby Moon. However, he got himself ‘spinning out of control’ as he got into eating sweets. But became a kind friend to Kero-chan as he doesn’t eat very much. Especially in “Cardcaptors: Clear Card” as that new adventure. By looking at him, short haired, adorable and cute.

7. Kirara (InuYasha). Owned by Sango, the demon killer, she appears mostly as a small kitten-sized feline with two tails. Very cute, and adorable. She does snarl and hiss very well. You can tell by the way her fangs show, and how her fur reacts. She has never left Sango all alone, cause she was given to Sango by her father as little girl. Besides, she is a loving companion to her. And she’ll be by Sango’s side as always. There was another one like her, only different with her kittens. But I do now know that like her, they’ve been cute and adorable in Ancient Japan.

6. Luna, Artemis and Diana (Sailor Moon). Owned by Serena, Mina and Rini, they have been living on Earth since the girls became the Sailor Scouts. They knew that they were in a long sleep and were transported from the moon to Earth. And only Luna, the black cat took the ability to be a human as she was pretending to be Princess Kaguya. She lasted for a few minutes, and was back to becoming a feline. Artemis, the white cat however, got into a romantic relationship with Luna until Diana, the small grey kitten came along. By looking at them, they are short haired, with long whiskers, as Artemis and Luna look exactly alike.

5. Mimi (Children Who Chase Lost Voices). An adorable kitten from Argatha as she went from her world, into our world by that mystical jewel. And later, she was found by that girl, Asuna as she became interested in both. She in fact was invited to Asuna’s home while her mom as a nurse worked late at nights in a hospital. And by the time that those two boys were found from Argatha, Mimi and Asuna together went to Argatha. It may have been sad that Asuna will miss Mimi, but she did brought her back to Argatha since that world, is where she came from. And most of all, Asuna will never forget that adorable kitten. By looking at her, she is small, furry and is almost the same size as how that fox squirrel was in “Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind”. She does meow for sure, just as long as she remains to be okay.

4. Jiji and Lily (Kiki’s Delivery Service). The black cat Jiji, was portrayed by Phil Hartman, as he worked for the support of GKIDS and Studio Ghibli when Hayao Miyazaki made this masterpiece. For he began a romantic relationship with Lily, that furry white cat. By looking at them, they’re furry, adorable and cute. Jiji is short haired, while Lily is fluffy. Kiki didn’t mind having them together before their relationship. In fact, Kiki was surprised that Jiji and Lilly became a cat family, had four kittens. Three white daughters that looked like Lily, while Jiji had a son that looked him. She does care for them really. And how luck can really occur to a beautiful witch like Kiki.

3. Yuki (The Cat Returns). Portrayed by Judy Greer and how she worked for the support on GKIDS and Studio Ghibli, she did really great as this white cat with a magenta ribbon on her neck. As a young kitten in Tokyo with no home and owner, she had been scavenging for food until she ran into Haru with fishy crackers. She thanked Haru for giving her food, before leaving for the Kingdom of Cats. And by the time she met Haru again, and helped her as a cat girl, and Baron too by entering the maze and heading towards the tallest tower. She was offered to be married by the prince, and how she will never forget Haru cause of her good deed that she did to Yuki. By her appearance, very cute with that magenta ribbon of hers as she thanked Haru very much.

2. Tib and Gib (Mary and the Witch’s Flower). Owned by that boy Peter, Tib is the male black cat, and Gib is the female grey cat. They’ve been aware of what danger lurks since Mary found the witch’s flower, and the little broomstick that took them to Endor College. That was when later, Gib and Peter were kidnapped as Mary and Tib together, had to rescue them from Madame Mumblechook and Dr. Dee. By their appearance, they are furry, and adorable as they can sleep with Mary in her bedroom. Depends if that would be okay with Peter. Pretty much like how Jiji from “Kiki’s Delivery Service” did.

1. Meicoomon (Digimon Adventure tri). Owned by Meiko, she’s the most cute and adorable kitty Digimon that no anime fan had ever laid eyes on. She appeared mostly in all six movies, thanks to Toei Animation, and nothing else. She was brainwashed by the forces of evil, as the Digidestined including Meiko had to rescue her. By her appearance, she is furry, cute, and how she loves being with Meiko. She did really great on fighting infected Digimon. Especially when all six movies went all the way, to a successful conclusion in the very final one. And shall never leave Meiko as all, as a new member of the Digidestined.

Do you agree with my top 8 picks list? Which are your favourite anime felines?

Isao Takahata (1935-2018)

A co-founder of Studio Ghibli, animator and a kind friend to Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata was one of the best anime directors for Studio Ghibli, and every anime fan were very pleased of him.

Born on October 29th, 1935, in Prefecture, Japan, he had an okay early life. On June 29th, 1945, he was lucky enough to survive a major US air raid in Okayama City.

Years later, he grew fond of animation. After he graduated from the University of Tokyo in 1959, he began to work at Toei Animation. His directional debut was “Horus, Prince of the Sun” in 1968. In 1971, he left Toei Animation as he began working with Yōchi Kotabe and Hayao Miyazaki. This became the birth of their friendship and business as they got themselves into “Lupin III” and “Heidi: Girl of the Alps”.

June 15th, 1985 was the year that Studio Ghibli was born, as Isao Takahata was one of the co-founders of that place. So while Hayao Miyazaki did “Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind”, Isao Takahata’s very first Studio Ghibli masterpiece was “Grave of the Fireflies”. Film critic Roger Ebert thought it was really good, as he mentioned about it on his TV show. And later, Isao Takahata became a screenwriter and producer for Studio Ghibli movies such as “Castle in the Sky”, and “Kiki’s Delivery Service” that he accepted on.

Then came the rest of his work, that became Studio Ghibli masterpieces, that the anime fans thought that they were really amazing. Such as “Pom Poko”, “Only Yesterday”, and “My Neighbors the Yamadas”. He was glad for sure, that Hayao Miyazaki’s masterpiece, “Spirited Away” won the Acadamy Award for Best Animated Feature Film in the early 2000’s.

His very final masterpiece, before his retirement in 2014, was “The Tale of Princess Kaguya”. Oscar nominated for Best Animated Feature Film. Unfortunately, if it weren’t for the Academy Awards, and how Neil Patrick Harris was the host, none of this would’ve happened to him. He would’ve deserved that Oscar award on his final masterpiece.

From that live action documentary movie, “The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness”, to how he remained retired for a few more years, he died of lung cancer, at the age of 82 in Tokyo, Japan on April 5th, 2018.

It was depressing for the anime fans and Studio Ghibli fans to hear the news, but he had a long life. He did had a long life, but would’ve deserved Oscar awards.

R.I.P. Isao Takahata. Most of us anime fans will miss you very much. 😢😢

Yu-Gi-Oh: The Dark Side of Dimensions

In September of 2001, a few days after 9/11, “Yu-Gi-Oh” was born on both the anime TV show, and the trading card game that everyone became very interested on.

And in that TV show, Yugi found a mystical treasure of ancient Egypt. The Millennium Puzzle. It not only suited him, but can possess magic as a pharaoh was released. An older version of Yugi as he became a badass.

In June of 2006, from Battle City Duels and facing mad men, that couldn’t help it, the mystical objects including the Millennium Puzzle were given back to the pharaoh’s tomb, and were gone forever. And the pharaoh returned to his own home world in his own dimension. But not for long…

10 years had passed until Yugi, Bakura, Tèa, Joey and Tristian were graduating from high school. They were ready to go in their separate ways, but will meet again once more.

For example, Yugi wanted to help his grandpa more often, but will get into the card games for sure.

The same went for Tristian, as he’ll be working with his dad at plant on a real job.

What about Joey and Bakura? They remained to find a job and be normal like how other people do. But are still interested in the duel game.

Especially for Joey’s sister, Serenity. For she is sweet as an angel.

Last but not least, Téa Gardener. My sweet Téa Gardener. The number 1# character that I really admire on. She decided to follow to her dream as a ballet dancer. And before you answer anything, she did. Right after graduation, at the very end of the movie, she took the first class plane.

But before everything and the “Yu-Gi-Oh” saga came to a successful conclusion, what about Seto Kaiba? Yugi’s rival? He went back to the pharaoh’s tomb and found the remaining pieces of the Millennium Puzzle. He had them all together, and wanted Yugi for the pharaoh to duel him.

There were only three final duels, including the very last one. The pharaoh did return, but never spoke. Kaiba, Yugi and the pharaoh together, had to get rid of their rivalry and stop some darkness from another dimension.

From those to how everything was done, the Millennium Puzzle and the rest of the pharaoh’s treasures, that possess darkness, nevermore that they returned and possessed a human. They were gone forever. Nevermore. So did the pharaoh by returning back to his home dimension. And henceforth, that they really did, the sibling rivalry of Yugi Muto and Seto Kaiba, have finally ended. They never fight again and will remain as friends for sure.

I was glad that this came to an end. And how they’ve made one last anime masterpiece.

Which is why I give this a straight ‘A’ and 10/10 stars. Very well done.

And henceforth, Yu-Gi-Oh had became a success. Especially by dealing with monsters, gods and pharaoh’s. Although they did this as a surprise release, and never showed this on TV, but I can tell you this…

YTV Canada and WB Kids did brought that anime TV show to an end in the summer of 2006. But I really didn’t mind on watching one last adventure. And how the sibling rivalry finally ended.

Especially for the pharaoh mostly.

Yu-Gi-Oh: The Movie (Pyramid of Light)

This was on YTV Canada as I saw this anime movie with my own eyes!! Right on that TV channel, before that anime TV show to that card game was cancelled.

From the days of how the gods of Egypt were, to the birth of the duel monsters and masters for the pharaohs, and hence that the Millennium Puzzle was given to Yugi, there was another treasure.

The Pyramid of Light. A clear crystal pyramid monument as it possessed evil.

The dark god Anubis had this, before he became a mummy as a real human.

Along with him, are the Egyptian Dead. Real mummies. Yugi, Téa, Joey and Tristian faced the Egyptian dead with no weapons at all. This also possessed Yugi’s rival, Seto Kaiba as he and Yugi’s friend, the Pharaoh had a battle together. With dark magician girls, blue eyes white dragons, trap cards and more, Seta Kaiba really didn’t care. He wanted to beat him in a duel.

But after Anubis was finally destroyed, their lives didn’t get taken away. They remain to be alive, and nevermore, cause mayhem.

So for the glory days of how anime were on YTV Canada, and how I love that anime TV show and card game, 10/10 stars is what I give. A straight ‘A’.