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Tokyo Godfathers
Violence: medium - low
Sex/Nudity: One woman breast feeding.
Runtime Episodes: 1 hour 34 minutes
Overall Rating: A
Artwork: A
Story: A
Comments: The packaging is stupid on this one.  Who puts light red text on a slightly lighter red background?  Otherwise it is fine.
Voice Acting English: NA
Voice Acting Japanese: A
Genre: Comedy, Slice of life
Extras: Previews for Tokyo Godfathers, Astroboy, Cowboy Bebop: the movie, Cyborg 009, Memories, Metropolis, Returner Steamboy.  Making of Tokyo Godfathers.

This movie also has subtitles in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Bahasa, and Thai or you can turn the subtitles off.  There are no other spoken languages available besides Japanese though.

Date Reviewed: 2/12/07 Last Updated: 10/26/09

Basic Premise: Three homeless people find a baby in the garbage on Christmas Eve while looking for gifts for themselves in a large trash pile.  They take it upon themselves to care for this baby girl and search for her real parents over the next several days.  The trio is made up of a father who has left his family in shame, a girl who doesn't have the courage to return home to face her father and mother, and a transvestite who is down on his luck.
Review: This is the story of three homeless people who wander around foraging together.  They all have their reasons for being homeless and have pasts that they have run away from, but now they band together for company, but more like a makeshift family.  Eh... sort of.  They fight a lot, but also makeup and get along.  

One day around Christmas eve as the three are foraging through a garbage pile for trinkets to use as gifts either for each other or for themselves they hear the sound of a crying baby girl hidden in the garbage that has been abandoned.  From the point that they find the unknown baby through the rest of the movie many events and coincidences in their lives become intertwined with one another.  They begin to experience amazing luck and escape great fortune and disaster by a hair's breadth with alarming frequency.  

The three decide to take care of the baby girl and call her Miyuki, but they also make every effort to search out the girl's original parents and try to find out why the girl was abandoned in the first place.  They also face the reasons that they are homeless and their past, which they have been running from.

Satoshi Kon, the anime giant who was involved with Perfect Blue, Millennium Actress, Paranoia Agent (tv show), and the forth coming Paprika, as well as a select few other movies took a step away from his very serious psychological drama/thrillers that are rather close to being horror movies to create a modern Christmas story, for adults.  I like how he writes to adults as there are is so much anime these days geared to kids, teens, and simpletons.

The animation is really top notch and realistic.  The characters are drawn with human like proportions as opposed to the deformed characteristics that are often seen in anime.  The style is similar to that of Cowboy Bebop in realism.  The colors are not in the bright sunshine colors that you often see either, but are a bit more relaxed with a slightly faded look.  It is not the eye candy that you see in Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust, or the bright colors of Scrapped Princess, but pleasing nonetheless and you can tell a great deal of effort went into making this movie.

The characters in this show are really realistic.  There are many coincidences and this movie is a comedy, but even so the story is pretty realistic as we see many snapshots into the lives of several homeless people and some other lives in downtown Tokyo; both the good and the bad.  It sounds a bit impersonal, but the story really appeals to the sociologist in me.  I like seeing so many different lifestyles that people have in Tokyo, and some of it surprised me, like the gang life or a Spanish speaking family that speaks only Spanish and some broken English, but that is it, which makes for an interesting communication barrier between them and the teenage runaway girl and the Spanish man and woman.  It is interesting what is conveyed without words

This is also a story of redemption, but not the typical angst story that you generally see.  It is more family friendly and doesn't get overly dramatic, but is certainly not shallow either as there is a lot of story in this show.  

Conclusion: I have seen this and several other creations of Satoshi Kon several times and am an admirer of him.  Satoshi creates great stories that can truly appeal to those looking for a mature story.  For a family friendly feel good movie this fits the bill.

Publisher: many companies were involved.  sonypictures, columbia - tristar, and Madhouse seem to be the main companies that were involved in publishing and distributing this DVD.
Related Website: none yet.
Where Found: Pretty popular and can be found most anywhere.
Copyright: 2003
Author: Satoshi Kon
If you enjoyed this anime try: None yet.


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