Recent Pickups: Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky (UK Blu-Ray)

The most common starting points that longtime Gundam fans recommend to newbies are the original Mobile Suit Gundam series from 1979, the resulting movie trilogy, or 2007’s spectacular hit Mobile Suit Gundam 00.

All of those are great, but if you’re not entirely sold on the franchise and want a quick taste of what it has to offer, you might prefer Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky, which is a film released in 2016 with a fairly short running length of 1 hour and 10 minutes.

The film does not require any prior knowledge of the Gundam franchise so new viewers should have very little difficulty following the story and understanding what’s going on.

I ordered the UK Blu-Ray release last week and received it today, and have been taking a look at the extras that Anime Limited / All The Anime have included.

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Recent Pickups: Belladonna of Sadness Collectors Edition (UK Blu-Ray)

This is a unique one, to say the least!

Between 1969 and 1973, a series of three adult anime films conceived by Osamu Tezuka (best known for Astro Boy) were released. These were known as the Animerama triology and consisted of 1001 Nights, Cleopatra and Belladonna of Sadness.

All three films are considered hentai, but I don’t think anyone watches them for arousement. In fact, the first two only received a ’15’ rating from the British Board of Film Classification and the pornographic scenes would be very difficult for most people to enjoy.

Belladonna of Sadness is the only one of the three Animerama films that Tezuka was not directly involved in, so we have director Eeichi Yamamoto to thank for this, and I have to say its the most extreme, weirdest and best of the lot.

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My unique experience watching Mirai at the Cinema

Introduction and context

I very rarely grace the cinema with my presence. When I think back to my childhood, I recall it being full of advertisements for products I’ll never buy and trailers for movies I’ll never watch, and end up wondering if the ‘big screen’ can really provide a better experience than a DVD or Blu-Ray disc.

I also have ASD Level 1, or Aspergers Syndrome as its more commonly known, and attending events with sizeable amounts of people can be incredibly challenging for me, not to mention the sensory overload that can come with it. I was able to attend my first two anime events this year and had a great time, but I haven’t been to a cinema screening in almost a decade.

But when I heard the premise of Mamoru Hosoda’s new film, Mirai, at MCM Comic Con Scotland in September, it undoubtedly resonated with me, and I felt the urge to watch it as soon as possible

So, what is Mirai? Its a slice of life film with elements of adventure, fantasy and drama that deals with the familial relationship between siblings, accepting the realities of life and all the emotion that comes with those topics.

As an older brother myself who gets along very well with my sister, I wanted to see how much I could relate to. So, last week I took the plunge and bought a ticket to one of the first UK showings at a Vue Cinema venue in Leeds!

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