originally posted at https://canmom.tumblr.com/post/654896...

¡ʇɥƃıu uoıʇɐɯıuɐ ɹoɟ ǝɯıʇ s,ʇı ‘ǝuoʎɹǝʌǝ ʎǝH

…oh dear, I seem to have been inverted! Hope that doesn’t get me in trouble with a fascist society of people whose relation to gravity is opposite mine…

Gif source: @kaeveeoh

Tonight! We’re going to check out director Yasuhiro Yoshiura, best known for the film Patema Inverted (サカサマのパテマ, Sakasama no Patema)! This is a fun sci-fi romance whose premise is, well, what I just described: Patema is a girl who lives in underground tunnels; she emerges on the surface to find that the floor of her caves was actually the ceiling, and she falls upwards into the sky. Luckily for her, a standard-issue short-haired anime boy is on hand…

I watched Patema Inverted a few years ago, and since I didn’t have a lot of time for extensive research tonight, I figured, let’s pick up something I know is decent

We’ve seen some of the work of Yasuhiro Yoshiura before, long ago on animation night during the Japan Animator Expo, where he developed two of the Studio Trigger shorts: Power Plant No. 33 about the kaiju electric plant, and Bureau of Proto Society, where (iirc) a group of survivors in a post-apocalyptic bunker attempt to reconstruct the past from movies. So generally speaking he has a pretty fun style!

Gif source: @kiritosaohero

It is surprisingly hard to find detailed information about Yoshiura. I found one fairly extended review of Patema by an Anime News Network writer which throws out a few details, such as that he’s known for being connected to the indie animator scene… and honestly that’s about it! All I have is a brief bio and a filmography, so let’s see what we can reconstruct…

Yoshiura got his start making short films and OVAs, such as Aquatic Language (2002) and Pale Cocoon (2006), working with what seems to be a relatively small team called Studio Rikka. Compared to his later fims, these tended to lean much more into an angular indie style:


They were pretty overt in their messages: Aquatic Language sees characters directly discussing the importance of language, while Pale Cocoon sees - much like his later Bureau - apocalypse survivors poring over the cultural records of the past.

These films both proved pretty successful, and in 2008-9 Yoshiura made something a bit bigger: a net animation series called Time of Eve, which was a collection of slice of life vignettes about a pro-robot café. Such a tropey premise as ‘robots suffer discrimination’ sounds like it could be rather hit or miss, but the execution is widely praised so let’s give it a shot!

Around the same time, Yoshiura got pulled into the orbit of the Eva rebuilds at Khara, providing design work for the second film. For a few years after 2.0 came out, he must have been working on Patema; afterwards, we see his work at the the Young Animator Training Project in 2013 (a Japanese government initiative to make short films at various anime studios), producing a short film called Harmonie (a romance based on mutual enthusiasm for music is the gist I am getting from summaries). From there, we hit the Animator Expo, a Patlabor reboot, and an upcoming film Sing a Bit of Harmony due to release this year.

Gif source: @tsunglasses

So, what’s his interest as a filmmaker, what are the theeeemes? Just about all his movies make a pretty overt reference to communication and connection; much like Mamoru Hosoda, he’s been eagerly exploring his pet theme through a variety of different sci-fi devices. But he’s got a few other recurring motifs: underground living, reconstructing the past through archives, café settings. Visually, his later films tend to fall into the broad space of summer movies (despite Patema actually being a November release), with lush paintings of clouds and that one short-haired boy who gets everywhere; but they can also be quite impactful, particularly the ‘falling upwards’ scenes early in Patema.

Honestly? I don’t expect any of these movies to be particularly challenging, but I think I need something light and fun tonight, and these should definitely hit the spot! Looking forward to finding out which ones stand out…

Gif source: @lincov

Animation Night 59 will be starting at 7pm UK time, which is more or less now, at twitch.tv/canmom! Planning to open with some of his shorter stuff, then build up to watching Patema and Eve in some order! (most likely Patema first at the rate this torrent is seeding ¬¬) Hope to see you there!


Add a comment