Over the 12 years or so that I’ve been keeping track of the local anime/manga fan community, I’ve seen a number of different series rise and fall in popularity. There was the Inu-Yasha era, the Naruto era, Fruits Basket, Fullmetal Alchemist, Ouran High School Host Club, Hetalia, Adventure Time, that weird Homestuck anomaly (shudder), Minecraft. And now, we’re squarely in the age of Attack on Titan, the franchise where massive vein-popping naked humanoids stomp around the planet, gobble up regular people (Eren’s mom, ewwwwww nooooooo) like we eat french fries, battle with the Avengers, attend junior high school and star in spinoff after spinoff after spinoff.
One adaptation has gotten a fair amount of attention over the past few months: the Attack on Titan live-action movies, in which real-life people battle real-life CGI Titans. You can see all your favorites — Eren! Mikasa! Armin!
Levi! — as they would appear as if they were real and dwelt among us. Here, have a trailer.
To say English-speaking audiences have been eagerly anticipating these movies could be an understatement. The announcement that tickets were on sale came on Monday, with the Consolidated Ward Stadium 16 theaters and the Doris Duke Theater at the Honolulu Museum of Arts listed as local venues; as I’m writing this post on Wednesday, the Thursday, Oct. 1 screening is completely sold out. (Pure speculation on my part, but could Kawaii Kon or one of our other local cons have snapped up all those tickets? This happened before in 2013, when Evangelion 3.0: You Will (Never) Get This Film on Home Video sold out one screening, then promptly re-emerged as part of a Kawaii Kon promotion.)
If you were interested in seeing this film on the big screen — Part 1 in particular — you might want to get those tickets soon. Fair warning, though: Part 1, at least, may fall short of your expectations. And Part 2, for those of you who may have watched Part 1 through *cough* other means, may not be much better. Consolidated Ward Stadium 16; 7 p.m. Sept. 30 (Part 1) and 7 p.m. Oct. 20 and Oct. 22 (Part 2). is Duke Theater screenings TBA.
Also coming soon to a theater near you (as long as “near you” is urban Honolulu):
Love Live! The School Idol Movie: Back in 2013, we first met second-year student Honoka Kosaka and her efforts to save her school from shutting down by forming a nine-member idol group, µ’s. Two anime series and a popular rhythm/card-collecting/relationship simulator/special-event-obsession-magnet game for iOS and Android later, we’ve reached the point where the senior members are about to graduate and µ’s is ready to dissolve … until they receive news of a special event. Is this their last hurrah? Could this be a springboard moment for the rest of their lives? Is it possible that your friendly neighborhood anime/manga blogger already looked at the Love Live wiki and read the entire movie plot summary because he’ll be away attending HawaiiCon when this film screens on Oahu? (The answers: can’t say, can’t say, and OKAY YES I’M ALSO THE TYPE OF PERSON WHO CHEATS AND SKIPS AHEAD TO THE ENDS OF BOOKS BEFORE READING THE MIDDLE PARTS.) While supplies last, you can also get a randomly selected shikishi (image board) of one of the nine µ’s members! Consolidated Ward Stadium 16, noon Sept. 12 and 7 p.m. Sept. 14.
The Satellite Girl and Milk Cow: As I noted above, there aren’t any screening times listed yet for the Attack on Titan movies at the Doris Duke Theater. While I was looking, though, something else caught my eye: The Satellite Girl and Milk Cow, an animated feature screening as part of Seoul Cinema 2015, a mini festival of contemporary films from South Korea. The synopsis … well, here, excerpted from the museum website:
An orbiting female satellite picks up a lovelorn pop song on her radio antenna and descends to Earth to try to discover who could be the source of such heartfelt emotions. On the way, she is transformed into the Satellite Girl, complete with Astro Boy-like rocket shoes and weapon-firing limbs, while the balladeer in question—a loser twenty-something playing at an open mic in a coffee shop—meets the fate that befalls all broken-hearted lovers: he is turned into a cow. There is more: a wizard in the form of a roll of toilet paper, an all-consuming incinerator monster, a pig witch.
And then there’s this publicity still.
Omega-squee. Milk Cow for the win, people. 11:10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Sept. 20 (free admission!), 1 p.m. Sept. 26 ($10 general, $8 members).
Boruto: Naruto the Movie: Proving that The Last: Naruto the Movie really wasn’t the last Naruto movie, here comes … umm … the last Naruto movie. Until the next one, I suppose, although it really seems like series creator Masashi Kishimoto will be taking a break from ninja tales for a while. This time out, Naruto’s the one tasked with the mature duties — he is the Seventh Hokage for the Hidden Leaf Village now, after all — while Boruto is playing the rebellious wild child role. But when Sasuke shows up to warn of impending doom, and said doom arrives on their doorstep … well, we’ve been through 11 movies and a bajillion anime episodes and manga chapters, you probably know what’s coming next: camaraderie, coming-of-age, teamwork, friendship, respect, all that fun shounen manga stuff. Consolidated Ward Stadium 16, noon Oct. 10 and 7 p.m. Oct. 12.