Anime becoming mainstream

By Christopher Rogers
December 10, 2004

Cecelia Francisco

Whoever said Japanese animation was just for kids? These over-exaggerated films have captured audiences throughout the United States, primarily by means of redefined art and visually stunning features. Though one may agree to such conceptions, others simply cannot stop staring at the unusually big-eyed, puppet-like features most anime characters seem to share. Regardless of such, Japanese animation has brought forth new dimensions to both cartoons and films in the United States.

Armed with everlasting creativity, main-line film producers “borrowed” the conception of using fictional characters as a way to charm an audience composed of both adults and children. For instance, Shrek became an addiction to younger viewers, who, on their part, praised the ugly yet fun features of the character. Much the same way, adults could easily plunge themselves into the enchanting world of an ogre, without necessarily dreading the fact that they are watching a cartoon.

“I didn’t mind the fact that I was going to spend two hours watching a cartoon. I love everything that’s animated, and this movie really caught my attention. What’s really cool about it, is that children can enjoy it just as much as an adult can,” Alberto Davila, a sophomore computer major, said.

Clearly, Japanese animation has contributed to an entirely new level of film production in the United States. Not only do producers have the ability to touch upon a wider audience but also have gained the ability to add character to their movies.

This became apparent in the movie Kill Bill. As Uma Thurman took on a fierce battle of sword fighting, the scene suddenly turned into that of animation. By doing just that, producers were able to over-dramatize the essence of the fight, as well as add a touch of humor to the slicing and dicing present during the fight.

“Even without the animation part, the movie was kinda crazy. The cartoon part was cool though, cause it brought something funny to the whole exaggeration of Uma kicking the crap out of all those people,” sophomore Ryan Nernei said.

Despite the fact that most Americans enjoy the essence of Japanese animation amongst movies such as Kill Bill or Shrek, others are entrapped with the stereotypical notion that, in majority, true Japanese animation reflects technology, violence and sex. Though this may very well be the case abroad, the Untied States was successful in turning animation into a motion picture more suitable for the eyes of a younger audience.

So don’t let stereotypes ruin the fun! Get out there, and lose yourself in the magic of Japanese-based animation. Chances are that you will enjoy such creativity more than the typical, ever-so-boring, trend of movies poisoning our theaters.

Posted to the web by Cecelia Francisco

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Christopher Rogers

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