I loved three out of these four series quite a bit, and the other one is OK if not fantastic, but the payoff comes in August when the launch The Defenders. They posted the first full trailer from it earlier this week, and it does look like they will come together nicely.
We get a new animation from Studio Ghibli with The Red Turtle, a brilliant story which needs no dialog to make its meaning known. MindGamers is a story about true possibilities for neural networks to interface to the wetware in our skulls, and not all the potentials are positive things. This one played in theaters across the country on a single night, if you missed it here is your next chance to catch it. A Dog’s Purpose is based on the book of the same name, and is included because reincarnation comes under the heading of fantasy in some cultures, and therefor genre.
Anime has a confusing entry today, with One Piece Movie: Gold and One Piece: Heart of Gold both coming out, two completely different animations. The live action Black Butler: The Movie is coming out this week as well, two hours of demonic butler revenge saga! Grimgar: Ashes & Illusions contains the complete series of amnesiac adventurers lost in a fantastic world. Season 2, part 2 of Garo: Crimson Moon continues the trials of the commoners exposed to the depredation of the demons and monsters that roam the night, while the rich and powerful stay safe inside the shielded part of the city. Only the wearers of the Golden Armor fight to protect them, and they can not be everywhere at once. Nurse Witch Komugi R is the complete collection of Magical Girl/Idol turned Nurse (Magical Nurse turned Idol? Nurse Idol turned Magical Girl? I don’t watch this series, so I am noticeably vague on the details) stories. I also have to mention the re-release of the classic Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team, a classic from the Gundam Universe that was a subplot of the primary story from 1996 to 1999.
The next chapter in the Lycan/Vampire Wars comes out this week in the form of Underworld: Blood Wars. The Girl with All the Gifts, based on the book by M. R. Carey will also be on the shelves come Tuesday. Strangely, the one I really want to see this time around isn’t genre: La La Land. In Anime Asterisk War: The Academy City on the Water is an excellent series, but with Part 4 holding only 6 episodes yet running at $55, I will definitely be watching it streaming online rather than adding it to the collection. Snow White with the Red Hair brings out Season 2 of the fairy tale, which at least is realistically priced.
Sorry, little in the way of genre movies this week as near as I can tell, although I do tend to miss releases every so often. This would be a great weekend to catch a previous release you didn’t quite make it to the theater for, or to binge watch a show you are falling behind on. I particularly recommend checking out Class and Doctor Who Season 10 on VOD or Streaming. Speaking of Streaming, that link to Class will take you directly to the Pilot episode, streaming for free for anyone to watch. Remember that this is the school that the Doctors granddaughter Susan was attending in the very first 1963 episode, and if you keep your eyes open the episode is filled with Easter Eggs, which seems appropriate considering it aired Saturday night.
Everything seems to be animated this week. It is always a treat to get a new title from Studio Ghibli, Ocean Waves is available this week for the first time in the US. It was made in 1993 as a TV anime, but at 152 minutes long rates as a mini-series. In anime, My Hero Academia: Season 1 has a hoard of high school students with superpowers, and a guy who enrolled in the most prestigious school for Heroes with no powers at all. Undefeated Bahamut Chronicle: Complete Collection has mechanical dragons used for aerial combat, with the prince and princess from adjacent kingdoms battling it out to see who gets Top Gun status, at least at first. Aria the Scarlet Ammo AA is another season of those girls with guns getting into more trouble, and in Valkyrie Drive: Mermaid you cannot separate the women from the weapons.
The best movie this time is a true story: Hidden Figures has to be one of the best films of the year, or last year at least. If you haven’t seen it yet, now is your chance! Mars: Season One is a mini-series presented on National Geographic all about the upcoming Mars Colonization project. Monster Trucks is silly fun for the entire family, a very friendly invasion indeed. And then there is Tangled: Before Ever After Volume 1, an animated prequel; the production values on this one are way below the original films (1930s at the most recent, it appears), but they are at least trying to tell a new story.
In Anime, Is the Order a Rabbit?? – Season 2 brings us lots more silly fun, and Toriko: Parts 1-4 contains the first 50 episodes (4 seasons, or one year, depending on how you prefer to count) of the ultimate food porn combat comedy! I think the streaming service is up to episode 148 or so at the moment, to put that in perspective.