Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

I Love You Philip Morris

Posted by Greg Butler On May - 15 - 2011

Not your most conventional love story, Russell and Morris find true love in prison

Its Hard for comedic stars to stay relevant through the decades, they may luck out with physical gimmicks (The Pink Panther), or perhaps the weird persona sells it (any “Ernest” films)
If it works, audiences will buy tickets to view the latest bumbling of a somewhat functioning jester. We revel in the behavioral nature of the uninhibited rebel, breaking norms on screen in what we the audiences wish to do off screen.. Silent film actors like Fatty Arbuckle; Charlie Chaplin, even present day Bill Murray, represented the unleashed ids of moviegoers ready to identify with a man/child rule breaker. How long does that last before the comedian wears out his welcome and begins to resemble your grandpa wearing those disco pants you thought he got rid of. Jerry Lewis once disapproved of the Farrelly Brothers” Dumb and Dumber, in particular Jim Carrey’s toilet humor approach of Lloyd, indeed the short cropped hairstyle and awkwardness was in some ways homage to the Lewis’s own geeky character Julius Kelp in the Nutty professor.

Reaching for the lowest common denominator, "Bumblee Tuna" nearly typecast Carey as "the guy who does stupid stuff.."

Lewis summed up his disapproval of the tone of the movie and perhaps Carrey as well. Had he looked a bit thoroughly, he might have picked up Carrey’s choices of bobbing back and forth between low art and better art, from Ace Ventura crudeness to concepts like the very Tex Avery styled The Mask.
Lewis did the reverse or rather stayed the same, continuously playing the same buffoon from previous roles. He was once half the comedy duo of Dean Martin in the late forties before striking out on his own.. but things change, political administrations come and go, economic times go up and down , the caricature of a man -child act can only go so far. This is probably the reason why Lewis’s career stalled in the 60’s and went dead in the 70’s, like the proverbial peter Pan, Lewis never wanted to grow up, Movies like Hardly working only painfully revealed that the times have finally and decisively caught up with him.
And this is where Jim Carrey comes in, veteran of the TV show in Living Color, he branched into the film world, catering first to the college frat crowd with low brow humor but also engaging in more ambitious comedies like the Truman show. Carrey avoids the mistake Lewis made in his career, realizing just in time that burlesque antics eventually wears thin with each generation. So a change was needed if you wanted to stick around a little longer.

Not every thing comes up Michael Jordan in the Number 23.

Carey had some miss-steps along the way. Wanting to be taken seriously, he overplayed his hand in the Majestic, A Capra influenced knock off that gives new meaning to the word maudlin. The Number 23, a semi-horror mystery drama became a mystery on why it was made. Finally taking a page from the Michel Gondry’s film Sunshine of the spotless mind, he may now be finding his niche balancing his unique style with off the wall quirkiness. It’s not the character that’s funny but the situation around him.

Carey creates a caricature of a gay character that anyone who lived through the 80s decade of gluttony can relate to: The pursuit to get Rich fast!

I love you Phillip Morris is the most daring subject yet for Carrey. Based on a true story of a gay con man that gifts his way through life until he finds true love connections with Ewan McGregor, played wonderfully in a gentle doe like performance. With his puppy dog eyes and lilting voice, he makes him a very enticing and literal jailbait that anyone straight or gay would probably fall for. The movie’s protagonist is reminiscence of Spielberg’s film “Catch Me if You Can”, but whereas DiCaprio character was deluding himself of being something he was not, due to lack of family cohesiveness, Carrey’s Steven Russell revel in his con to keep his. If anything the acts of deception by Russell validates the attitudes of economic excess of Reagan-omic indulgence of the 80′s.
There are moments of sweetness that solidify the relationship as in one intermittent scene of Carrey and McGregor slow dancing nonchalantly as Johnnie Mathis‘s Chances are played on, amidst the violent accompaniment of a police shutdown in the next prison cell. The passion and the devotion Russell has in their relationship wasn’t any different than Hawkeye’s declaration of love to Cora in the Last of the Mohicans. Add consistent prison escapes and con jobs gives weight to Russell’s motivations, yes he’s a thief but he’s caring one.
Look we can wonder if Carrey is or isn’t going for Oscar gold with these choices, but I won’t slam him if he tried. After all, everybody wants to stay relevant.

I Love You Philip Morris a beer rates a shot of bourbon.



Posted by ron On May - 8 - 2011

The harder sell in the movie Thor was not the CGI but convincing us that a winner of the genetic lottery, Natalie Portman had a hard time finding a decent guy. By decent she meant, a beefcake straight from the cover of Playgirl magazine.

The Gods are angry and there will be hell to pay in the movie Thor directed by Shakespearean legend, Kenneth Branagh. In a house of two princes, the relationship between two worlds will once again, come into play as a banished warmongering young prince learned nobility wasn’t a birthright but earned through peace and understanding.

Branagh’s film might not be of the classical comic book interpretation of Thor but he did succeed in creating a credible interpretation of his own, a super hero tale of romance. He channeled his Shakespearian stage play experience into decent dialogue that epitomized rhythmic wordy monologue derived from comic books. As the All Father Odin, Anthony Hopkins set the tone having established a regal presence within these characters by carefully weighing his words with every breath. Chris Hemsworth worked within his limitations but it was Ray Stevenson as Volstagg who was one line away from bellowing, “What’s in your wallet?” Within the realm of Asgard, these ornate caped warriors are convincing as something one would see at the Metropolitan Opera. The transition of taking these characters and putting them into the world an audience might relate to wasn’t quite as seamless but Branagh did spare his audience the obligatory, “You must be European…”

Screenwriters Ashley Miller and Zach Stentz best known for their work on Agent Cody Banks weren’t very efficient in terms of balancing out the scenes between Asgard and Midgard headed into the second and third act. The time and care invested to make the budding romance between Thor and Jane Foster credible was not as caring when it came to the Odin sleep and Loki’s somewhat convoluted plot.
As the brilliant astrophysicist Jane Foster who can’t drive, Natalie Portman worked well with the limited material as a giggly girl who hasn’t met many desired beefcakes. Arguably more wasted talent than Rene Russo’s appearance was Kat Dennings who played a useless demographic named Darcy. She was an intentional character shoehorned into the story to provide campy laugh every time the studio execs feared Thor might turn its audience off by taking itself a little too seriously. Gotta ask, was Hilary Duff too busy at the time?

Thor faltered in the last act. The much hyped battle against the Destroyer was over before it even started. Loki’s lie within a lie within a lie just had too many plot points that didn’t make any sense. It was the plot equivalent of Bernie Madoff lying to his investors in order to gain the presidency by dooming those evil rich people. Silly and misguided, one wondered if the god of lies and mischief lied to himself. Thankfully, the film never wasted too much time with super villain explanations. Instead, it’s one hammer strike away from the credits.

Thor rates a Strong Bow cider. Sweet tasting and easy going down so long as you don’t get too carried away trying to make sense of it.


The Bleeding House

Posted by ron On May - 3 - 2011

Patrick Breen led new credence to, “Guess who’s coming to dinner?”

When a curious stranger sought shelter in the home of a troubled family far removed from the nearest town, a dark brooding tale of tragedy unfolded in the Bleeding House. First time director/screen writer Philip Gelatt was inspired from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre and it’s easy to recognize its atmospheric influence once the camera gazed upon an isolated home in the middle of nowhere before a stranger came knocking. Nick, the mysterious stranger was played by the well versed Patrick Breen who channeled a convincing creepy, soothing predator dressed in the iconic white suit and pontificating with a Southern accent. The more unpredictable variable was the proverbial elephant sitting in the room suffocating every member in the family. The nightmares of the mother, the selectively catatonic daughter’s obsession with dead things, and the father’s financial troubles gave the audience pieces of a puzzle to play with. With Nick’s introduction, the careful controlled development of family psychology was undermined and reduced to a predictable linear suspense thriller. With very little material to work with beyond the first 20 minutes, Alexandra Chando never quite convinced the audience of the one plot twist in the film because there was no development but rather, creepy imagery. Nick did all the talking, sometimes for other characters, and perhaps explained too much of the plot. While Gelatt created a serviceable film, he didn’t have to spoon feed the audience at every juncture. A charismatic weirdo can carry a film but he or she can also take the audience out of the film to the point where he was overbearing. Nonetheless, the Bleeding House was still a serviceable film with form and function.

The Bleeding House rates as a house brew on tap. It has taste but less character, it could have been so much more.


The Last Exorcism

Posted by sean On April - 27 - 2011

Few have a reaction like this anymore when they’re told the devil is after them.

Another crazy possessed girl is back with The Last Exorcism, an amateur mess that severely fails at trying to create anything truly scary or original.  It’s the latest pseudo-documentary with hopes of riding off the success of films like Paranormal Activity or at least make a profit with its low-budget fiasco.  Instead of using what made those films good or improving their mistakes, director Daniel Stamm loses track and ends up producing just a poorly done horror feature.


Taking place somewhere in the South, The Last Exorcism is about Cotton Marcus, a minister who decides to hire a camera crew to expose the Church’s fraud by performing a staged exorcism with a devout family.  What he and the crew don’t realize is that they may actually be dealing with a real possession.  It starts off like a Dateline special on minister Cotton Marcus, who sells himself more as a comedian than a minister as he slips a recipe for banana bread into his sermon without the parish realizing it, showing the church’s blinding hold over its people and validating his own hucksterism about religion.  The set up makes an interesting news special, but the film wants a “found footage” sense to it, and yet after the introduction on Marcus, there’s rarely a shot that actually feels like someone just filmed it.


These kinds of movies are meant to feel authentic, natural, and real in a supernatural setting.  It’s what intensified the fear in films like The Blair Witch Project.  You should be able to buy into in what’s going on even if there are demons or monsters, but the film barely gives you the chance to accept this reality, especially during the two exorcism scenes.  The first one alternates between the bedroom where the ritual is being performed and the van where Cotton shows the nifty gadgets he uses for the hoax.  The second one, the big confrontation, cuts from person to person with multiple camera positions despite the fact that there is only one cameraman, hindering the natural realism this movie is intended to mimic.


The plot is just as problematic as Stamm tries to blindside the issues with a few curve balls and succeeds only in losing the focus of the narrative, but audience’s patience as well .  He keeps you guessing a little bit as he plays with the idea of whether or not the situation is actually real, but in the last act, he crashes the two possibilities together into a train-wreck of an ending.  Not two minutes after the film decides to go one way, it completely flips around and finishes with a reveal that only shocks by how absurd it is.


The Last Exorcism is marketed as another horror documentary, but the sloppy camera work, uninspired cutting, and ridiculously plotted storyline shows that Stamm was unable to make any sense out of this  mess.  In the hands of somebody who comprehends the appeal of the genre, this could’ve been the Cloverfield of exorcism movies, submerging you into an unreal situation and being terrified by whatever happens next.  Instead, the Last Exorcism is a piss-warm beer that leaves you desperately trying to wash the taste out of your mouth when it’s over.

The King’s Speech

Posted by ron On April - 21 - 2011

In a prude nation like England speak only when spoken to, be discreet, and never waste a word when only one will do.

At one point or another, every one has had to deal with speaking in front of an audience and if you remember distinctly, how the weight of one sentence generated so much anxiety never mind, it felt like an eternity to finish. The source of anxiety was the key to the riddle of George VI’s stuttering issues in the King’s Speech directed by Tom Hooper. With a brother who abdicated the throne for a divorced socialite and a Second World War on the horizon, George VI (Colin Firth) has a problem. He can’t seem to get his words out when it counts most. When all else failed, unorthodox practitioner Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush) was called in to work on his phonetic enunciation.

The King’s Speech took place during a fascinating time when socializing between the classes in England was very uncommon. One could be thrown in prison for merely calling a Royal Family member by the vernacular. Radio was the only methodology to reach every corner of the country. The purpose, description of the event, and structure of the words meant every thing in terms of getting the nation to support a cause. Perhaps there was no more important message than that of asking a country to go to war and trust in one man.

The relationship between George VI and Lionel Logue wasn’t so much an actual depiction but an allegory of trust issues between the classes. Neither man respected each other despite very formal pleasantries. Sometimes more is less in terms of the quality of life that each man held. After King George VI took the throne, he came home to find out his private life had changed forever when his children chose to curtsey instead of running to his open arms for a hug in his own home. Family life became as much a business as Royal life. Mr. Logue never had such problems as displaying public affection but he certainly enjoyed torturing George VI whenever he had the opportunity. In politics, no one is devoid of ego and that goes double for any citizen who loved to defend their apathy towards their country. This movie was effective in portraying that the problems and distrust between ‘them and us’ was never anything recent, just subtler.

Today speech is a lost art form especially with the advent of video. A person can appear to be a complete mess of a speaker but pan to show his assets and suddenly speech doesn’t matter. Speech should matter because it is a reflection of the handle and control over not only yourself but more importantly the use of the language to communicate an idea.

If I had to rate the King’s Speech, I have to describe it with a rich, full-bodied red wine full of class, dignity, and respect.


Blue Valentine

Posted by ron On April - 17 - 2011

The best of intentions can often lead to some harsh lessons in life and love.

When the usher at the Village East Cinema actively warned every person who bought a ticket for Blue Valentine not to see this movie with your significant other, an overwhelming feeling of Caveat Emptor washed over every cinemaphile in the vicinity.

Serendipity was a cruel muse in Derek Cianfrance’s Blue Valentine. It’s a story about how two people fall in love but ultimately end up miserable. The film plots two starting points in time that ultimately converge at a point where the two individuals played by Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams simultaneously marry and divorce. If the brief synopsis sounded generic, it was. Plots in romantic films are rarely innovative. Judging from the rate of divorce society hasn’t been learning from its mistakes. In fact, one would argue more people are falling out of love than ever before. However, it’s not so much where the story in Blue Valentine began or its predictable ending but rather the contrast of temperature generated by the two acting powerhouses in each forthcoming scene in one moment in time juxtaposed against the other moment in the time line.

Due to the quality of acting, Blue Valentine created its own category that was equal parts love story and horror film, not of the Fatal Attraction variety but more of one that made anyone unlucky in love re-visit the demons of past tortured relationships and reopened a few old wounds in the process. Both Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams challenged themselves to create believable compelling characters that are naïve by no fault of their own. Dean (Gosling) was a free spirit who never had an agenda in life. He hoped to get by in life with good looks and clinging to his idealistic vision of love. He was forced out of his comfort zone and into the role of committing to something that he would later leave unfulfilled. Cindy (Williams) fell for Dean’s humor and dreamer mentality but it’s clear she never really loved him. She just felt guilty when he was beaten to a pulp by her ex-boyfriend for their affair. When Cindy found out she was pregnant, she went to Dean without ever really finding out who the father was. It’s a moment of great personal sacrifice and serious contemplation. As the couple aged, the wear and tear of being parents and struggling took its toll. Her compromises and having lived with Dean’s complacency and drinking drove her mad. Cindy didn’t become her parents but lived a nightmare worse than even she could have imagined.

Through their performances, the film never tried to rationalize why people fall in love or do the things that they do. Emotions cannot be rationalized, thus the complexity in spontaneity with human nature. The only thing that can be measured in a relationship is cause and effect. Certainly these two well-intentioned individuals weren’t exactly honest with themselves or each other when they signed up for marriage. It’s brutal honesty and heartbreaking in a way that Chinua Achebe, author of Things Fall Apart would shed a tear.

If I had to rate Blue Valentine, I’d give it a well aged, Scotch with a lot of personality and familiarity that is hard to swallow but good to the last drop.


Sucker Punch

Posted by ron On April - 17 - 2011

Emily Browning aka Babydoll stares into the abyss of her mind or is that the inglorious mess of this movie?

Five anonymous young ladies with nicknames you might expect to get lap dances plot to escape from an asylum in Sucker Punch. Like something out of Mathew Barney’s Cremaster Cycle, Zach Snyder manifested his own multiple worlds within one body as the ultimate forbidden planet for fan boys. From the mind of one imprisoned girl, young sexpots in costumed high heels fought 10ft samurais, robots, a zombie Kaiser, and a dragon. Unfortunately, all these fictional food groups from so many genres of geekdom were randomly shuffled into a linear format reminiscent of standardized video gaming. When the impact of the reality didn’t measure up to the fantasy, the CGI spell was shattered and left behind a cathartic unidentifiable mess of a movie.

Director Zach Snyder has always had an eye for rich, captivating visuals that were capable of creating awe. Complemented with strong source material, he’s able to navigate a story and at least observe the traffic lights that serve as transition points in character development. The direction in Sucker Punch more closely resembled the Lindsay Lohan School of Driving. Intoxicated with imagery, he ran too many red lights, and went off the bridge of no return. Unfortunately, his 7th feature film served as a cautionary tale when a box office name brand was allowed to run wild without any inhibitions. With Man of Steel, Zach Snyder has raised the stakes even higher and one wonders how does Warner Brothers feel about him directing one of their flagship characters?

Unlike the Usual Suspects, there’s no source or reference for the wild imagination a little girl who lived in a house more closely resembling the Adams Family in what looks to be some time before 8 tracks were replaced by cassettes. So where do the ideas for all these creatures and imagery come from in Baby doll’s mind? Never mind that. Why wouldn’t a girl sentenced to lobotomy by her stepdad, fantasize about getting revenge? In an asylum where molestation and rape of women seemed implied, one has doubts that its victims imagine themselves as burlesque combat machines.

This film aimed to encourage empowerment and fighting for control over your life as a defenseless girl but the themes were an afterthought after it was revealed Baby Doll (Browning)’s doorway into the fantasy world was performing a shimmy that entranced her victims. As the dance number distracted them, the other girls could carry out their plan to escape. Fortunately Snyder spared the audience from watching a barely legal girl dance provocatively in front of the slimiest men caught on film.

Note to the producers of Sucker Punch, in order to make a successful movie you’re going to need 5 things:
1. Plot
2. Screen play
3. Direction
4. Acting
5. Ativan
For movie lovers everywhere, you might need a prescription of Valium before indulging this painful mess of a movie.

If I had to rate Sucker Punch, I’d give it a Four Loko Red Bull suicide note.



Posted by sean On April - 5 - 2011

“We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold…”

The Old West has its mythic gunslingers such as Wyatt Earp, Billy the Kid, and Jesse James, but now, another name can be added to that list.  His name: Rango.  As the most unusual character to wear a ten-gallon hat, Rango, a method-acting chameleon, takes you on a thrilling, hilarious quest way over his scaly, delusional head.


Director Gore Verbinski’s animated feature follows the title character (voiced by Johnny Depp) through the barren desert after his glass tank falls out of a car.  From the moment Rango realizes his hostile predicament, the film delivers plenty of laughs with slap-stick gags and referential humor in the form of hallucinations and a cameo by Depp’s friend and former role, Hunter S. Thompson (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas).  There is also a disparity in the age-level of humor as it’s anchored by Western images and dialogue consisting of diction that few children will get.  It’s not necessarily a flaw that the film’s aim is skewed more towards grown-ups, but anyone under the age of ten won’t understand words like “prostate” used in some of the quick one-liners, nor will they realize how many Westerns are given homage to, playing on the nostalgia of an older generation.



Once Rango stumbles upon the town of Dirt and its animal inhabitants, the lizard puts on a façade of a western badass, selling himself to the townsfolk as something he’s not.  The film lingers on this build-up of lies with the audience anticipating for it all to collapse, but before Rango follows a predictable path, Verbinski pushes the film into unforeseen territory with exhilarating gunfights and aerial battles.  Half-way through the second act, the film jettisons forward like a rollercoaster in the desert with adventurous set-pieces that trump most of what Hollywood has offered lately with its live-action blockbusters.  When the film takes a break from the gunfire, it plunges head-first into a surrealistic fairytale through trippy moments of epiphany more creative and entertaining than any drug-based comedy.


The biggest highlight of the film lies within the gorgeous animation.  Standing toe-to-toe with Pixar, the vast color palette and fine details give life to each character as they bask in the desert lighting.  Close-ups revel in the most minute features from the scales on Rango’s face to the dry mud in a prospector’s fur.  The character designs are also exceptionally unique, playing on the tropes of the Old West and blending them with the most unusual critters you’ll find chilling at a saloon, from an outlaw gila monster and his reptilian posse silencing everyone with their entrance to the town-drunk turkey getting thrown out of the bar.  There are even a few characters that may appear gruesome or frightening, such as the menacing Rattlesnake Jake with his demon-red eyes and malicious slithering.


Verbinski delivers a heaping plate of cinematic enjoyment with the twisted world of Rango, making the film a refreshing ice-cold beer in the desert sun.  It’s dirty and beautiful at the same time, a mesmerizing combination on the foundation of a familiar, yet quirky plot that remains head and shoulders above the majority of animated features released in the past few years.


Black Swan

Posted by ron On March - 28 - 2011

Are you crazy is that your problem? Maybe but crazy is often beautiful.

There were no surprises, plot twists or clever ruses in Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan. Simply put, it was a character study chronicling the downward spiral of a young woman’s sanity in the ultra competitive world of ballet. If you’ve ever had any experience with athletics, you can certainly relate to the heavy abusive rituals that Nina Sayers (Natalie Portman) endured on a daily basis in her quest for artistic perfection. From the movie’s start, it’s painfully apparent ballet can never be a recreational activity, it’s an all consuming mistress with a stop watch who will take second place from no one.

Unfortunately perfection has its price. The very unpredictable Thomas Leroy (Vincent Cassel) has final say in who dances to his beat in the Black Swan play. Much to Nina’s delight, the lead is hers to lose but on the condition that she would do whatever Mr. Leroy says. As his demands are raised so did Nina’s stress level.

Enter Nina’s rival played by Mila Kunis. Kunis’ free spirit without a care or consequence was the anti-thesis of Nina’s approach to life and the perfect foil for her own downfall as her darker half takes over.

Darren Aronofsky mastery over his craft was also a feat of perfection. The camera work, editing, sound, and execution of the script was every bit of the White Swan: Form and function. The suspense, seduction, and disturbing horrific self destruction of human fragility was his Black Swan. Together, it’s no surprise that this film had received so many nominations. Not since Jodie Foster and Jonathan Demme has an actress and director duo been so insync. Portman didn’t just convince us of White and Black sides of her soul but the most important part, the painful transformation. It’s the transition scenes that really raised the stakes and invested our fears and hopes for Nina.

If I could rate Black Swan with a beverage of choice, it’s easily a fine wine that’s just going to get better with age. Cheers.


Posted by sean On March - 9 - 2011

Anime has garnered a huge following in the West since the first shows were brought over in the Sixties, beginning with Astro Boy and Speed Racer.  Fifty years later, anime shows are still being brought over and translated for American audiences, the newest of which is Durarara, based on a light novel/manga series.  Revolving around a multitude of colorful characters, from simple high school students to mythological beings, Durarara tries to weave dozens of arcs to create an entertaining story but gets tangled up along the way.


Durarara is eerily similar to ABC’s Lost through its sense of mystery, its journey into the supernatural, but most of all, its narrative structure.  Made up of character-focused episodes, Durarara takes place in Ikebukuro, Tokyo as freshman Mikado Ryūgamine transfers to a local school at the invitation of his old friend, Kida Masaomi.  In the first episode, Kida gives Mikado a grand tour of the city, telling him about the gangs and the who’s-who of area, along with the urban legend of a headless biker, the Black Rider.  From there, the lives of over a dozen characters intertwine due to a series of attacks on city citizens connected to corrupt companies, secret gangs, and ancient myths.


It takes the first five or six episodes to do what the pilot should’ve done in introducing this world.  By attempting to flesh out each character in their own episode(s), the story gets spread so thin that you will finish a third of the series before you get a firm grasp on one of the main plots.  Luckily, with the show running at only twenty-four episodes, the plotlines get less drawn out from there, but that circles back to the problem of too many characters.  Some who are given too much screen time suddenly become irrelevant and disappear without tying up all of their loose ends.  At the same time, characters you want to see more often, like the violent bartender Shizuo or Russian sushi-chef Simon, are given a scene here or there without any further exposure of their back-story.


On the upside, Durarara juggles the drama and humor very well once it gets the ball rolling.  The different plotlines stem from reality-based problems such as gangs and teenage love while splicing in supernatural forces from Japanese and Celtic mythology, and like any youth-based story, there are plenty of laughs and light-hearted moments.  These are nice touches that never seem overbearing to the series as the story, deep down, is about the characters and their progression through a less-than-ordinary life.  As for the animation, it’s slick and vibrant in its use of colors.  It may not be like Akira or other anime where every crack or shadow is detailed to convey a sense of realism, but the artwork is stunning to look at most of the time and captures the feel of the city and its inhabitants.


Durarara drags at first, but then it sprints at the end, leaving behind the feeling that maybe one day the series will wrap up the story arcs it left open.  Minus the setbacks, it is a quick, cold beer for being a show that anime fans can enjoy without the worry being disappointed after several years of commitment.


Part 1 is now on DVD and Part 2 will be released on March 29, followed by Part 3 on May 31.



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