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Cat Soup (2003)

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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Software Sculptors
Genre: Anime, Foreign, Animation, Cel
Running Time: 34 min.
Languages: Japanese
Subtitles: English
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When a young kitten's soul is stolen by Death, she and her brother set out for a strange land on a mission to recover the plundered entity. All Nyaako wants is her soul back, and her loyal brother Nyatta is more than willing to help his sister in her time of need. In the surreal and unexplored landscape of the Other Side, however, nothing is what it seems and their journey soon takes an ominous twist. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Disturbing images with a deceptively cute morbidity by hneline1 December 10, 2003 - 8:49 PM PST
13 out of 14 members found this review helpful
When the circus magician took a sawblade to his lovely assistant and cut her up into red rounds of meat with blood spurting onto the two kitties in the audience, I knew this was NOT an anime for little kids.

Cat Soup (Nekojiru Sou) is a short, weird, psychedelic adventure that explores.. um... death, I think. Disturbing death, like the kittens being led to a large soup kettle while the overweight and hairy host dresses up like a mouse in an S&M fetish club, or like the earth as an overripe fruit oozing red mucus that God slices open for dinner. Characters twitter instead of speaking words and the only dialog is a few sparse word bubbles. The story moves from scene to fantastical scene like dream sequences where there is little logical continuity, but I was so fascinated that I didn't need to question why something happens next. And let's just say that there were a few scenes that made me think twice about being a meat eater.

This is definitely not your traditional Japanese anime. Don't watch this if you want sugary sweet animals or even gratuitous violence (the violence isn't gratuitous). But if you want something like a cross between Yellow Submarine and Itchy and Scratchy with a deceptively cute morbidity that may make you think, you might like this.

BTW, this anime is loosely based on a manga by the late Nekojiru, who I hear had an underground following for her surrealistic stories. The DVD contains a subtly disturbing director's commentary. I mean, for example, here is a rather intense scene where some characters are beating another character to death and director Tatsuo Sato is talking about the animation technique, not the reason for the violence. I found the interview more enlightening. Director Sato talks about being given free reign by Nekojiru's husband to create the anime however he wanted and influences by Dali and Magritte and Kiriko. He also sounded quite embarrassed describing how often he was asked by other interviewers what was the staff's "drug of choice" during production and Sato had to explain that no one was taking drugs as far as he knew. Hmm.

Not your cutsy anime. by akeleven November 3, 2003 - 2:42 PM PST
6 out of 7 members found this review helpful
It's about cats and it is anime but don't rent this to entertain your kids or for casual viewing. It takes two viewings to get a clue. Apparently it is based on a manga but it is more experimental art film than story. There are interesting images and minimal dialog. Just as surreal as a Salvador Dali print, it should come with a dictionary of symbolism.

Cute Cats...Strange Film by kicza October 11, 2003 - 12:29 PM PDT
7 out of 10 members found this review helpful
While the animation of this film is nice, the film itself doesn't make any sence at all. I suppose that the description of the film is correct but there is no mention of the names of the cats in the film itself. Through most of the film I kept wondering exactly what was going on and finally came to the conclusion that if I had some acid or other drugs in my system I might understand what the animators were going for. I can appreciate the short film (37 min) even if I didn't compleatly understand it as was intended.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.70)
104 Votes
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