The pick of the week for mixed media films (combining live action with animation) is the Tim Burton Alice in Wonderland. This twisted little tail continues a long film making tradition of using the Lewis Carrol source material to tell a morality tale; what the moral of the story is changes with each director, of course. I am not a fan of Burton’s visual style and found Depp’s character in particular somewhat grotesque, but I still consider this version a must-have addition to the collection. The other film of note this week is the recent remake of The Wolfman, with Anthony Hopkins and Benicio Del Toro. Despite the star power this one fell just a little flat for me, but fans of the Gothic may have a better opinion of it.
My pick for number one imported live action film this week absolutely has to be 20th Century Boys 3: Redemption. While there is enough exposition at the front of the film to catch you up on the story so far, I am setting this one aside for Saturday, so I can watch all three films back to back. This has a very original story, and great characters that you follow through most of their lives, watching them grow and develop.
New in the live action TV category this week is Burn Notice, Season 3. Yes, I know it’s not science fiction, but I think everyone would agree that it is a bit of a fantasy. Plus it is just too much fun to miss. As usual, they have the previous season DVD release just before the new season starts; in this case two days before, as season 4 kicks off Thursday night.
In the world of animation, he’s Baa-aa-aack! Shaun the Sheep: One Giant Leap for Lambkind is another half dozen episodes from the team that brought us Wallace and Grommet. Very few language skills are needed to enjoy these, as dialog is not a core component of the tales they tell.
For anime proper, Brighter than the Dawning Blue: Complete Collection is a story of diplomatic fence mending between the Earth and the Moon, with the Lunar Princess exchange student running into some romantic complications along the way. Also out this week, Slayers Evolution-R season 5. As usual when the Slayers are involved, they nearly destroy the world in the process of saving it, and magical mayhem abounds. Also out this week another S.A.V.E. edition re-release of a complete series, this time Beck.