Initially daily but now sporadic blog about anime and world animation with a specific focus on the artists behind the work. Written by Ben Ettinger.
May 2005
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Archives for: May 2005, 13

Friday, May 13, 2005

10:32:45 pm , 314 words, 727 views     Categories: Animation, Movie

Banipal Witt

Watched Banipal Witt AKA Catnapped. I'm only about ten years late on this one. I must say, this is probably the best thing Takashi Nakamura has ever made, at least to my eyes. I talked about how they don't make movies like Puss 'n Boots anymore in my last post, which should have been enough to indicate that I hadn't seen this film yet. Truly magnificent in every respect. This is what Takashi Nakamura is about. I like his more serious side, but it's a shame to let the incredible imagination on display in this film remain buried. I was reminded of Masaaki Yuasa in terms of the designs, and I got to thinking that this is the kind of film I'd like to see Yuasa make - a crazy fantasy adventure in the Toei Doga/Shin'ei Doga vein plastered head to toe with his inventions, a feature version of what we saw in Nanchatte Vampiyan. What I most like about the film is that Nakamura the animator comes through in a way he didn't in Palme. The animation is like nothing you'll find anywhere else. The acting is very active and always interesting, full of ideas that are not the stock in trade of anime but pure Nakamura. Most of all, Nakamura's particular genius for knowing what to do to make the animation feel incredible is what made him so unique - the way you'll have one shot at the normal rate followed by a quick action shot at full-frame to give it that extra turbo kick, for example. Knoweldge of how to use all the tricks that only an animator would know to increase the impact of the animation is what I like most about Nakamura, and this film was a tour-de-force display of Nakamura's very special animation wizardry. And to top it all off, Toshio Hirata did the opening and ending.