I loved the anime. So, when I found out that the film was out, I decided to go watch it tonite. I didn’t expect too much because these game/anime/book migrations tend to suck. Well, this one didn’t suck that much. I have actually seen far worst films in the cinema. In fact, I actually found it fairly enjoyable overall. However, I do have a few tiffs with the film.
Firstly, they have successfully ruined the image of the lead actress, Jun Ji-Hyun (from My Sassy Girl). What’s up with the name “Gianna Jun” anyway? I guess that they were afriad that the English speaking crowd would have trouble saying her name. Plus, she’s always been famous for her strong (but quirky and emotionally damaged) characters on-screen. But this time, she plays a monster slaying vampire who just seems constantly pissed off at the world. Ruined!
Secondly, the language. They have lots of issues with accents. I found it very funny that Ji-Hyun (aka Gianna) spoke Japanese with a Korean accent. You can definitely tell that she doesn’t speak Japanese fluently. At one point in her dialogue, I had totally expected her to finish off the sentence with ham-ni-da. Then, they got the Japanese supporting-actress to speak in accented English instead, even while she was at an on-sen. Again, the dialogue did not flow smoothly for her either.
However, the biggest problem with the film is the local film censors. These days, they have upgraded their method of slicing off bits of the film that are controversial. They will vary the frame-rate around the point that needs to be cut-off. As a result, the audio still runs smoothly but the visuals seem to speed-up and slow-down randomly. You may actually think that this was an intended special effect. I doubt that it is though. There’s actually more blood in the trailer than in our Malaysian sliced up version of the film!
I wonder what other ideas are the western film-makers going to rip-off the Japanese. Another Production I.G. anime – Ghost in the Shell – would make an excellent story, as long as they don’t ruin it with bad acting and a horrible script.