Thursday, June 12, 2014

In short: Shihaisha no Tasogare (1998)

In some vague cyberpunk-y future Tokyo with demons. A young woman hires (kinda-sorta) the mysterious androgynous Tsunami to find a demon for reasons that would be spoilers if this thing had an actual plot. There’s some business about demons/ogres and the guardians supposed to protect humanity from them, sadistic flying telekinetics, and something about a drug that can turn normal humans into demons, but the OVA seems so disinterested in actually telling its story, I don’t know why I should care about any of this, if clearly nobody involved in the production did.

What Saki Okuse’s Madhouse one part OVA is supposed to be, neither itself nor I are sure. Sure, it consists out of a bunch of clichés taken right out of excellent horror anime in the Wicked City mould, but it doesn’t do anything at all with them, because even its borrowing of ideas is incredibly lackluster, with monster designs that look more like cost-cutting measures and visual storytelling so lame and static you hardly even notice this thing is actually animated. Which it only barely is anyhow, because this thing is so much below standards, it can’t even be bothered to move.

That the film’s story – such as it is – is barely told at all (using a phrase like “only in the most perfunctory way” would suggest to much dynamic in the storytelling), perfectly fits into an anime that isn’t so much an actual anime as Madhouse saying “Oh, you like mutations, weird sex stuff and dark future Tokyo?” and throwing some crap they had lying around in their garage at the audience. Watching this, is an embarrassing waste of time that could be more fruitfully used doing dishes or looking into the mirror while repeatedly uttering “please make it stop”.

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