Sunday, November 16, 2008

I Heart Coo

Just got back from Kitchener after catching one of the last of this years' flicks in the Waterloo Festival For Animated Cinema, and, wow, Keiichi Hara's Summer Days With Coo was just what I was looking for! A great 'boy and his monster' story with plenty of funny, scary, and tearful moments... like E.T. with traditional legend replacing Science Fiction. It's no secret how much I love yokai (and Kappa in particular) so I went in fairly excited. I'm very happy to say that the film exceeded my expectations. It's impossible to avoid comparisons to Miyazaki considering the subject matter and ecological/ anti-development undertones, but the fact that this film holds up well under that comparison is saying something. From MAP, director Hara says, "Summer Days with Coo is very special to me. It was more than 20 years ago that I first read the original story and a great many things have happened between then and the realization of this film. Throughout my career, the concept has always been in my mind and I am very happy that I have finally had the opportunity to direct it as a film..." Official movie website here with loads of artwork. I sure hope this becomes available on the North American marketplace soon so I can share it with my kids.