Big Fish and Begonia is a Chinese animated movie released in 2016, but in the US just released in limited theaters recently. I manage to watch it with my friend and left with a smile after watching this movie.
The movie is about a world full of god-like deity where the people who turn 16 must travel to the human world for a week. After Chun is rescued by a boy who lose his life saving her, she tries to bring him back to life and must now raise him as a Dolphin before he can be sent back to the human world. Having to overcome many obstacles to bring him back to life with her friend Qiu.
This movie left me smiling from start to finish as it sucks me into a fantastical world full of Chinese myth and tales imbued in the creatures with great designs that make you interested in every one of them. I might as well start out talking about the gorgeous animation that plays a key role in my enjoyment of this movie. The movie manages to not have lots of dialogue and instead let the animation do the talking and I am glad they did because this feels like a Studio Ghibli movie, without feeling like a knockoff and more of its own thing. But if I have to compare it to something I would say Spirited Away with all the different designs from the deity people. With the world looking gorgeous and mythical with so many great backgrounds and scenery with great touch and care to make them look gorgeous. Whether it be having the water be clear to reflect the night sky or the bright red clothing standing out the cold harsh snow, or knowing to move the camera when the character is just standing still to make it more interesting. Is a movie that relishes in looking gorgeous and being a mythical world. Even when the movie felt like it was dragging on, I did not mind because the animation sucks me in and kept me smiling. Granted the opening credit did have me a bit worry since it did have CGI flying whales, that while it does look creative, was quite awful looking. Thankfully that only the opening credit, as the rest of the movie is mostly gorgeous 2d hand-drawn animation. Granted there are a few CGI sprinkles into the movie that does stand out, but at the same time, the designs and color for them are just so well done with lots of care that I did not mind. The style manages to overcome some of stand out CGI, which again thankfully is barely used in maybe two or three scenes and is not an eyesore, but does stick out a bit. Also as I mention this is a Chinese movie, and I only have seen one Chinese anime, which I thought was horrible, but thought the animation looks great. One of the things I am a bit excited about seeing a Chinese anime is the fact that I do get to see different culture in their drawings and designs. I had a recent discussion about diversity in movies, and the main reason I want diversity is not to pat myself on the back that minority are being represented, but the fact that I do like seeing new and different things. So I am glad that they manage to have so much of their design be inspired by Chinese culture while looking amazing. The animation overall was just stellar.
Also a big shout out to the soundtrack. The soundtrack manages to have variety and manage to elevate scenes and make them feel more whimsical and magical. It knew how to use the soundtrack to its advantage and keep the audience immerse with the music dying out in the right time to give the weight of some the situation instead of just having depressing music play in depressing moments. It manages to make the movie not only look gorgeous but sound gorgeous which help immersed myself in this magical world.
Now to the story which I guess is important to make a movie good. As I said one thing I love about the movie is that it minimized the exposition and instead show the world instead of painstakingly talking about it. Granted I would have love a bit more explanation about their fear of the fish aside from a bad omen, but otherwise it work for the story. It manage to deal with death with great grace. Showing that nothing is without consequences and that one has to burden the consequence if they want to save another. As much as I hate doing this because I just said it manages to be its own thing, I do have to bring up Studio Ghibli again. The reason why I love this movie is similar to why I love Spirited Away. Its a girl trying her best to save someone, through hard work and determination. When she sees other getting in trouble for her action, she does her best to fix it no matter the consequence. With her friend being the same way, except doing everything he can for her sake. I couldn’t help but admired that and was rooting them all the way, which made the grim scenes even more heartbreaking. As I do want to see the characters succeed and get that happy ending, as the character were endearing. With the friendship between the girl and the human-dolphin being quite nice and touching. Also, I do have to note the fact that the movie does have some nudity and blood, but is done with great grace and maturity that it does not feel out of place. Is a movie that has a heart with its beautiful animation and soundtrack that makes it worth a watch.
This Chinese animated movie surprised me and blew me away. I heard recently that Chinese anime might be on the rise, and if we get more stuff like this, I personally would not mind. Also is funny that recently we got a movie from a studio that supposed to be the successor to Studio Ghibli, but this studio might already be it if they keep making movies like this. I give this movie an A-
Taka: I see. A global release will benefit it. Gundam did pretty good. The only few franchises that are only popular in Japan but not popular in the west - Yokai Watch comes to mind.
Apr 10, 2021 1:55:16 GMT
Master Menos: F for Respects. DMX did all his work while suffering from a drug addiction, and I almost never knew until a point. I hope his next life treats him far better.
Apr 10, 2021 15:30:45 GMT
HungryWorld: Sorry for taking so long for the things i have to do, have been suffering from some health issues (including mental health deterioration). Anyways hope i can be a bit more active here soon enough once i am properly patched up again.
Apr 27, 2021 17:45:38 GMT
Taka: No worries, health, family, school, and work take priorities first.
Apr 28, 2021 7:41:52 GMT