The Boy and the Beast (2015)

Kyuta, a boy living in Shibuya, and Kumatetsu, a lonesome beast from Jutengai, an imaginary world. One day, Kyuta forays into the imaginary world and, as he's looking for his way back, meets Kumatetsu who becomes his spirit guide. That encounter leads them to many adventures.

> Lost in one world, found in another.
My last anime movie was 'Giovanni Island' and I did not end up liking much. I thought that was a decent movie with an intense WWII story told through the Japanese children's perspective. Since then almost half a year passed and now I saw this from the director of 'Wolf Children'. That was his career best movie, so I think the director wanted to follow the same footstep. Thus he ended up making this one which was quite similar theme, except the sketches were not as cute as that.
Like one of the discussion topics on this title, it almost connects with the director's previous movie. Maybe something like Tarantino, who tried to connect 'The Hateful Eight' with 'Django Unchained', later dropped the idea for the characters that failed to merge. But here the reason might be the drawings which were somewhat different styles. And this one seems for teenagers and adults for having a little mature content when the narration reaches the second half.
It opened by a brief telling about the monsters and its world. Came back to the human society to focus on a 8-year-old runaway boy named Ren. While tailing a couple of strange creatures, he accidentally enters the monster world through a secret portal. Soon he meets a beast called Kumatetsu who is one of two candidates for 'the great master' title, decides to take him as his protege.
So the quarrelling begins between them for having difference in everything, but as the time passes, they bond well. Then comes a time for Kumatetsu to compete in what he was preparing for, and the boy who finds his own path. But somewhere when they were getting apart, an evil force brings them together to fight against it.
> "People who work hard sincerely will master it quickly."
Felt like I was watching a comedy, that was until the first half. All the character intros were kind of normal, nothing grand, but later found a strong connection to each other and each were very unique in nature to remember. This part is where that suits better for children and what comes next was kind of opposite. Feels fun parts are over, introduces a few new characters as the narration takes as big leap as 8 years forward.
This middle section was like a re-launch, like a new story to begin. As a child character turns into a teenager, the movie attempted to fit with adultish stuffs. So there was a semi romance, but feels like the quite friendship track. This is where you think the movie lets you down, a time kill section. Due to the theme that designed to take place between the two worlds, this is very important for moving forward to the 3rd act. I think shortening around 5 minutes would have done good for the pace of the movie.
The final act is even more unlike to the earlier episodes that adds a wonderful special effects to bring the action sequence. Sadly the stunts were not as dynamic as I hoped, I mean it was too short especially if you love fights. The kid and the beast combo were like from 'Ernest & Celestine'. Whenever these two are seen together, that bring so much fun.
Basically the movie outlines how humans are obsessed for power, who can go any lengths to clinch it and one of the ways is to let the darkness consume him. I already saw it twice. For the second time view it was even better and I liked it very much. Still, it is not the director's best work, as well as not a bad movie to just ignore.
After Miyazaki announced his retirement, many anime fans, including me were heartbroken. I never found anyone who can replace him, but a very few names came closer that includes this film director. He already gave some hits, but right now all he needs is to carry on his consistency, and definitely his name would appear beside that legend. I need not to tell you that anime movies are becoming rare these days, so when one make its way and people who watched it says it is a good movie, then must grab it.
8½/10

Video Audio Project (VAP), D.N. Dream Partners, Studio Chizu, Fukuoka Broadcasting System (FBS), Kadokawa, Miyagi Television Broadcasting, Toho Company, Ltd., Dentsu, Nippon Television Network Corporation by Mamoru Hosoda.
Stars: Kôji Yakusho, Aoi Miyazaki, Shôta Sometani, Suzu Hirose.

Genres: Animation, Action, Adventure, Drama, Fantasy

Keywords: parent child relationship training orphan beast surrogate father shadow father son reunion anime

07/11/2015

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