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Japan. Satoshi Kon. 2003. genre - Adventure. Yoshiaki Umegaki, Shôzô Îzuka. synopsis - On Christmas Eve, three homeless people living on the streets of Tokyo find a newborn baby among the trash and set out to find its parents. In continuing my trip into the late Satoshi Kon's all-too-small body of work (four feature films as director and one television series that is MUCH too hard to track down) I now come across this film, 2003's Tokyo Godfathers, which I unfortunately missed when it was first released and was actually the first time I had heard of the director.
I was happy to finally come across a copy and pop it in. only to find that it was not at all what I was expecting from the director of such mind-benders as Perfect Blue and Paprika. This is both good and not-so-good. It's certainly not a bad film, nor one that is distasteful. It's a sentimental piece of pap that has the ambition to the Japanese anime answer to It's a Wonderful Life: a Christmas story that is not necessarily all about Christmas that has supernatural (or "miracle" overtones, and goes sometimes into dark places.
The short of it: three homeless people, one a bearded guy with a family that he left behind, a transvestite who insists on being called a woman's name and is so flamboyant as to make Harvey Fierstein jealous, and a young runaway girl whose father is a cop. They come across a baby abandoned in a dump where they dwell at night, and decide to take it to the police. well, not unanimously anyway, the transvestite wants to hold on to it and mother it. But they come across some hijinks and problems along the way, including the woman who comes back to find the baby again.
I could go on about the plot, but it should only be the short of it not so that I'll reveal anything so surprising, but there is TOO much to try and reveal in a plot synopsis. Like many anime films and series I can think of (on the action-side Dragonball Z and on the more adult side Princess Mononoke) the story can get complicated, if not impossible to follow. In this case though it's a holiday family film (yes, family film, despite its dark corridors its meant for ma and pa and the kids sitting around the fire) and in the last fifteen minutes or so complications, coincidences and/or contrivances get piled on, leading up to a big chase scene up a building.
This would all be fine if the film itself didn't become so sentimental. It's hard to take that in Hollywood movies, but with Kon, and he has the best intentions believe me, it becomes a tale so squishy that you can feel it slipping from your fingers. It is pap, but not the kind of enjoyable pap that the original John Ford entertainer 3 Godfathers was back in 1948 (same premise, three men and a baby, but with the Duke in one of his best performances, but I digress it's good. Here the characters end up being more of service to Kon's 'Wonderful Life' tale, yet this does come after some time developing them. We get back-story, and later some contradiction to the back-story, and some visual aids such as a flashback to the transvestite's story as a singer who got in to a big fight with a heckler.
Sure, the film has beautiful animation. Kon is one of the forerunners of Miyazaki as one of the greats in his time of modern anime in Japan, changing the game and surprising at many turns. At the least Tokyo Godfathers is pretty to look at, a kind of urban fairy tale with lots of snow and harder-edged buildings and grit, with some blasts of big humor and some deserved heart. If only the story didn't sink into its sappy moments so much - though for some this will be just the thing that will take them in, and I can't blame them. Perhaps it's the Grinch in me.
Facebook is showing information to help you better understand the purpose of a Page. See actions taken by the people who manage and post content. Page created - January 23, 2018 Prestação de contas O Pequeno David esteve com a gente para retirar uma órteses articulada que auxiliará em seu tratamento. Agradeço ao Padrinho doador que através desse item nos permitiu auxiliar mais uma família.... See More meu filho jhonatas já teve ajuda fomos bem recebidos pelo lindo trabalho que fazem. pelas as pessoas que voces ajudam e muito dificil precisar ajudar do que precisar... ou precisando de uma cadeira de rodas pra meu neto de 5 anos ir pra escola sentindo na pele a dificuldade See More Correia Lemos é a Patrocinadora oficial dos Padrinhos de Coração.
- Reporter: Gabriel Cavalcante
- Bio Um primata weirdo e nerd qualquer. Curso Economia. Gosto muito de cultura japonesa e amo artes marciais. - Keep endeavouring! ᕙ( : ˘ ∧ ˘ : )ᕗ