Weekly Japanese Pop Culture Thread (October 17th, 2018) / Mini-Meetup at the Animation Is Film Festival

Weekly Japanese Pop Culture Thread (October 17th, 2018) / Mini-Meetup at the Animation Is Film Festival

Heya folks!

The second annual Animation Is Film Festival is being held this weekend at the Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, bringing together the best in animation from all around the world for a celebration of one of the most vibrant and vital forms of media in today’s pop cultural landscape. Of course, that means several anime films are in competition:

  • Mirai. This is the new film from director Mamoru Hosoda, the man behind celebrated films such as The Girl Who Leapt Through Time and Wolf Children. Both screenings (sub and dub) are actually sold out, but fear not: it’s coming to North American theatres in November.
  • Okko’s Inn. A new film from veteran studio Madhouse. It’s about a young girl who goes to live with her grandmother after her parents’ death. Her grandmother manages a traditional Japanese inn, and it turns out that it’s haunted by ghosts! But don’t worry; they’re the friendly kind.
  • Modest Heroes. Studio Ponoc – a studio founded by several Ghibli veterans – made a splash last year with their debut, Mary and the Witch’s Flower, which would be the closest thing we have to anime Harry Potter if Little Witch Academia didn’t exist. They’re back with another film, this one a compilation of shorts. But unlike this year’s Flavors of Youth, this one isn’t about young adults, but instead young kids. [Pictured in the header]
  • I Want to Eat Your Pancreas. People have told me that this title sounds weird. I don’t know what they’re talking about. Who hasn’t ever had a craving for someone else’s pancreas? (Ah, sweet, sweet insulin and glucagon.) In all seriousness, this is, from what I’ve heard, basically the anime version of A Walk to Remember. And since A Walk to Remember is one of my fondest guilty pleasures, I’m excited for this film.
  • Penguin Highway. Large numbers of penguins start mysteriously appearing in a quiet suburban neighbourhood, and everyone’s baffled. Personally, I’d be pumped. Penguins rule.

There are also many exciting films in competition from places as diverse as Hungary, Ecuador, and Hong Kong. Please check them out too!

L.A. area weeaboos, cartoon lovers, and film buffs, this is a great chance to see some films that won’t get super-wide distribution, before they even do their modest theatrical runs. I’m going to make a subthread below for folks to coordinate meeting up at screenings. Please let us know which films you plan on seeing!

As for the rest of you lovely people, I’ll ask what I always ask: what have you been watching/reading/playing/eating/listening to lately?