Ajin: Demi-Human Live Action Film – Brilliant Casting & Execution!

I haven’t seen the anime nor read the manga version of this show so I watched it with no prior reference to anything.

And I should say it’s a nice standalone film on its own.

The Premise

Set in a world inhabited by a number of Ajinshalf-humans gifted with extraordinary ability to regenerate, thus making them somehow immortal. 

Source: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com

Apparently, not all of the ‘Ajin’ are aware of their identities. The government publicly advertises their so-called ‘protection program’ for these beings, though, in reality, they hold them captive for research.

The research, of course, is far from ordinary. If any, it can be equated to torture.

The Stellar Cast

I’ve always been very mindful of the casting as they impact the overall delivery of the show. In this film’s case, they’re just brilliant. This is setting aside my personal bias to Takeru Satoh.

Gou Ayano, who played as the main villain Sato, was ‘ideal’ for the role. From his facial expressions to his natural bearing and voice, they all spell out terror – something that gives out this ‘run and hide feeling when he shows up and looks at you with a smile.

Source: http://www.straitstimes.com

In fact, I consider him as a necessary element in bringing out Takeru Satoh‘s own character. They balance each other’s roles, which I saw as a crucial element in the film’s execution.

What I like best

Izumi and Tanaka’s fighting scenes

Were highly physical.  Contrary to the main character’s battles, these supporting characters engaged in hardcore hand to hand combat which I like considering that I’m fascinated with fist fighting. Tanaka (played by Shirota Yuu) and Izumi (played by Rina Kawaei) seemed to be an unlikely match in battle with their differences in physique, but it’s stunning to see them go all out against each other and be on equal standing.

Compact storytelling

Had I seen the anime or read Ajin’s manga, I might have a different take, but as of this writing, I’m pretty much satisfied with the delivery. The premise was presented well, though it still left questions. The character motivations were reasonable and humane, too.

I can’t say I felt attached to the characters, nor have I rooted anyone on the show since the characterization was not fully developed, but I still had a good time watching it come to a resolution.


Takeru Satoh was the initial reason why I decided to give this a try, but the movie did well in encouraging me to go ahead and watch the anime series.

I’m interested in what you think about this show. Any thoughts?

View the show’s cast here.

 

 

 

 

Dear ABC Network, DECEPTION Needs a 2nd Season

I’ve long been a fan of crime & mystery drama series so it’s fair to say that I have my own bias when picking shows in a pool of good ones this season.

Deception, an American Series created by ABC network, was my pick 2 weeks ago and I’d say it’s one of the shows on top of my list of recommendations at least for this season.

There isn’t so much terror and bloodshed on it like my other favorites, The Blacklist and 24,  but it sure has one unique allure that sets it apart from the rest – magic.

Image: The Ringer

And while others might contest how the series potentially destroyed the mystique of magic by showing how one trick is done and all that, I’d say it’s fairly logical and entertaining.

I could say a couple of things that I like best about it but here are the key points:

  1. Family Intrigue – with members from past generations apparently growing up as magicians and most likely something more.
  2. Cameron and Jonathan – I just find the contrast so appealing in so many aspects.
Image: @bestofdeception
  1. Storytelling / Delivery / Execution – Can’t say anything bad about it. The narrative was consistent, easy-to-follow, but not boring – engaging.
  2. Mystery – With the FBI involved, we can expect crimes committed after crimes, yet we also see a significant buildup of mystery the more we learn about the characters involved. And damn if it’s not intriguing.
Image: Antredeluciole.fr

All these things considered, and I highly expected ABC to give us more!

But then again, they say don’t expect so you won’t get hurt.

Deception, apparently, will not have a second season and I just cannot wrap my head around it yet.

I mean, it’s probably not the first show that suffered the same demise in the industry. But still why?! After giving us that ending, just why?!

It holds more promises than how it started. Revelations led to us, having more questions – understandably- and that twist at the end is a vivid cue to what’s coming next.

But then what, there’s no more?

I’m not an expert and this could just me ranting my disappointment for a good show thrown away.

It has potential.

Casting may not be stellar, and yes, Cameron and Kay may not have that romantic chemistry a lot may have hoped for but guys….even without the romance, the show can hold its fort just well.

Anyway, there are several forces at work in producing the show.

So while I’m convinced how the show needs more, it’s up to the hands of the makers.

Still…

Dear ABC Network, Deception needs a 2nd season.

Image: The Ringer

 

Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – A Review

Gloriously eccentric and wonderfully intelligent. – The Boston Globe

How far will you go to solve a neighborhood murder?

Perhaps not that far. Most likely not at all.

Murder is dangerous. And dangerous things are bound to get you in trouble. Or your family. Or friends. Even the innocent lives of those who become aware of your quest to solving the mystery.

But 15-year old Christopher John Francis Boone believed in the importance of solving this particular murder – the bloody demise of their neighbor’s dog, Wellington.

A Personal Take

This is an interesting read that combines humor and wit in an easy-to-follow storyline. It’s that type of book that you can finish in one sitting and that which can be hard to put down once you get yourself at ease with Christopher.

I find his character interesting, weird at so many points, but definitely a likable kid. Five simple facts about him include:

He is a Math prodigy. And he knows it. 

And that is why I am good at chess and maths and logic, because most people are almost blind and they don’t see most things and there is lots of spare capacity in their heads and it is filled with things which aren’t connected and are silly, like, “I’m worried that I might have left the gas cooker on.”

He finds people confusing. For two reasons according to him:

  • Because ‘people do a lot of talking without using any words’
  • ‘ people often talk using metaphors.

He hates the color yellow.

It’s unlikely for him to lie. He doesn’t lie.

This is another reason why I don’t like proper novels, because they are lies about things which didn’t happen and they make me feel shake and scared.

He doesn’t like to be touched. Nor shouted at.

What started as an innocent quest for a kid to solve a dog’s murder is really a story of family, acceptance, and reconciliation. It’s a nice read that leaves me a feeling of gratitude.

We can learn a thing or two from Christopher. Few of which, are those we often take for granted.