by Samantha H., Staff Writer, Inside AX- Anime Expo
2010 was a year filled with many new anime series and some fantastic anime movie releases. With the release of movies such as Karigurashi no Arriety and One Piece film: Strong World, it may be hard to pick what movies to watch. Here at Inside AX, we’ve gathered a small list that we think deserve a look. Without further ado, in no particular order, I present Inside AX’s Top Five Anime Movies from 2010.
Trigun: Badlands Rumble
I remember when I watched Trigun and fell in love with Vash and the badass known as Wolfwood years ago. Well thankfully twelve years after the anime ended, Trigun fans get to experience a burst of nostalgia that comes with the Trigun: Badlands Rumble. Released in April, Trigun: Badlands Rumble features a story about a legendary outlaw named Gasback who comes to Macca City to make another heist. Thus the mayor of the city hires bounty hunters to stop him. The original voice cast of Trigun comes back in Badlands Rumble and the movie retains the charm of the original series with familiar sounding music and fluid artwork. This movie is a must watch for Trigun fans. Luckily for us, FUNimation announced at Anime Expo 2010 that they planned to release Trigun: Badlands Rumble in US theaters!
King of Thorn (Ibara no Ou)
King of Thorn is a psychological thriller that was released May 2010. Originally a sci-fi manga by Yuji Iwahara, King of Thorn follows a select group that goes into cryogenic hibernation after a virus that turns people into stone, the Medusa Virus, ravages humanity. The survivors wake in the future to a horrific nightmare of creatures destroying their world. The group must band together and fight to survive in order to discover what exactly happened while they were sleeping. While my summary may not do the movie any real justice, I highly suggest watching it. King of Thorns has a great twist near the middle that makes you aware that there is something else going on that you couldn’t see right away making it stand out from the generic horror movies out there. This movie has even been nominated for the 2010 Asia Pacific Screen Awards for the Best Animated Feature film. Though the film deviates from the original manga plot, King of Thorns is a great watch.
Karigurashi no Arriety (The Borrower Arriety)
Karigurashi no Arriety topped the Japanese box offices this year and for a good reason too. Created by Studio Ghibli, this movie is based on the novel The Borrowers by Mary Norton. Karigurashi no Arriety takes place in Koganei, western Tokyo where a boy named Sho moves with his aunt and comes into contact with Arrietty , one of the tiny people who live under the floorboards of the house.
Released July 17,2010, Karigurashi no Arrietty is the first movie that animator Hiromasa Yonebayashi has directed. Hayao Miyazaki was also a developing planner for the movie. With many successful movies such as Princess Monoke and Spirited Away, Karigurashi no Arriety is a must see for Ghibli fans and anime enthusiasts alike.
Released February 16, 2010, Halo Legends is a compilation of eight shorts done by some of anime’s best animation studios such as Studio Bones, Production I.G., and Toei Animation. Though some may be skeptical about watching an anime based on a video game, Halo Legends is actually rather good. Microsoft created its own divisional team, 343 Industries, to oversee the project and make sure that no details were missing. As a person who didn’t play much of Halo, I was able to watch Halo Legends and understand the back story without a problem. The visuals for some of the shorts were simply amazing as well. Each story is well done as every animation studio was given a chance to do what they wished in regards to artistic style. Simply put, there is probably at least one out of the eight great episodes that will make you happy. Halo Legends is a great movie for gamers and anime lovers alike.
Okay so I cheated a bit. Summer Wars was originally released in 2009 but was also released in 2010 in some US theaters. Directed by Mamoru Hosoda (The Girl Who Leapt Through Time), Summer Wars is a movie about Kenji Koiso, a student who is a part time moderator for the online game called OZ. He visits the family of his classmate Natsuki Shinohara in Ueda to celebrate her grandmother’s 90th birthday. While there, Kenji is blamed for the virus that is spreading throughout OZ and works to clear his name and save the world with help from Natsuki’s family. Hosoda’s Summer Wars has a great heartwarming story about the power of family and impressive art direction. The movie has even been submitted for the 83rd Academy Awards for the “Best Animated Feature” category by FUNimation. I would highly recommend Summer Wars to all fans of anime and Hosoda’s work.
What were your favorite anime movies of 2010?