They are by far the best anime! We counts down the best anime to come out all the time, including the likes of Blossom, Wake Up, Girls! Seishun no Kage, Wake Up, Girls! Shichinin no Idol, and more!
MAL Score: 6.51
Blossom is a short work of animation set to music. It is dedicated to memory of Japan’s 3/11 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami disaster that “reminds us not to forget those who were directly affected.”
(Source: Crunchyroll News)
although only a 5-minute long animation it allows the viewer to sympathize with the character and narration that accompanies it. It’s a short watch with a good message and I would advise others to watch it simply out of sympathy for those who suffered in the disaster, and for the animators who worked on this stylized piece.
Once again, it’s a 5 minute watch so it isn’t much of a commitment to walk away with a smile on your face.
Originally before watching this i was anticipating a music video. As indicated by the music genre. Unfortunately this was a video with music accompaniment. Difference being is music accompaniment is centered around narration. In telling of a story. A regular music video provides more music than plot. In this video the theme is god but not from a view one might suspect. While the story is kind and soft centered there is nothing breathing breath taking. Or something to keep you on the edge of your seat. Not even a nice song. I suppose nature enthusiastic will enjoy this. But that is all this movie can provide nice scenery. That and the belief in god.
It took me while but i was able to appreciate this art choice. Here the art is border-lining from painting to realistic. Which is a proper depiction for the message. To me it indicates life as we know it is in the drawing form. Or better yet the editing form. There is bound to be mistakes that have yet to covered. And when we die everything will become clear.
Overall: Rather than seeing this as a music video see this as an art piece.
It was brought to my attention this is my 400th review. My word! Next hundred i hope to find something more entertaining to comment on.
3: Wake Up, Girls! Seishun no Kage
Japanese: Wake Up, Girls！青春の影
MAL Score: 7.15
Movie sequel of Wake Up, Girls!, announced at Wake Up, Girls! Festa.2014 Winter.
The story is the best part of the movie. There is no intense drama or complex plot here. It shows the realities of an pop group that has just made its major debut: the initial high, the change in lifestyle when working for a major label, and also the dip that comes afterwards when the newness wears off and people begin to wonder if they were a one hit wonder or a group that can endure. The WUG girls have to face a world that they are not familiar with and it shows when they try to act more like the idols around them but come across as unnatural and stiff. The story flows very naturally and engaged me the entire time despite the lack of action.
There is a subplot for the rival I-1 group from the anime that gets a good amount of development without distracting from our main girls, and shows the pressure at the top of the industry.
This movie has a sequel, so the plot isn’t resolved. However, it ends at a critical turnaround and growth period for the girls which is very effective in drumming up excitement for the sequel.
Unlike some other anime movies, the art does not see an improvement from the TV series. It is still the same clean and simple style, which is not a bad thing, but I had hoped for flashier performances and smoother animation. There is only 1 new performance and it is nice, if nothing spectacular.
There are two new songs, but one of them does not get fully played. The second song is really quite catchy and great. Again, a little disappointing for an idol movie.
Great. If you liked the girls from the anime, the same personalities return and they are cute as ever. They are normal girls that most viewers can sympathize with, even though they all have very different personalities. It is a short movie, so everyone does not get as much screen-time, but all the girls get chances to show off without it being forced. Their interactions with one another are natural and fun to watch, and they really count on one another. There aren’t any major new characters other than a flamboyant Spanish producer.
Edit: Damn Yoppi looks good with short hair.
The I-1 characters make a return as well and despite little screen-time, stand out strongly. Their CEO has some thought-provoking lines, so watch out for that.
However, what I enjoyed most about this movie was the manager. In the past year, he has grown up a lot, and now has an actual strong-willed personality. His weak and idiotic antics were the worst part of the anime for me, but dare I say it he is now quite likable.
Plenty of nostalgia for me, so I really enjoyed watching this movie. It’s a good thing when your biggest complaint is that the sequel movie has not been subbed yet. Soon.
Seishun no Kage is a great sequel to the anime that improves on its realism and story. The struggles that the characters face aren’t some obscure obstacle like saving their school or some evil rival CEO, but rather the realities of working in a tough industry. That’s why, when it sends the same message of not giving up and persevering through difficulty, it feels more sincere and relatable.
2: Wake Up, Girls! Shichinin no Idol
English: Wake Up, Girls! The Movie
Japanese: Wake Up, Girls！七人のアイドル
MAL Score: 7.16
In Wake Up, Girls! Green Leaves Entertainment is in the worst situation any Talent Management Agency can be in… they have NO talent! Desperate for an act, President Junko Tange targets the idol singer market and gives her flunky Matsuda his marching orders: get a girl group to manage, even if it means building one from scratch!
Since complete singing groups rarely appear out of thin air, Matsuda’s now in the difficult position of having to find girls with the right skills who don’t already have contracts with Japan’s music industry. That girl at the Maid Café? Good enough! A lead singer who’s been fired from another group? Sure, why not? How about one who’s only 13 years old? What could possibly go wrong there?
They may not be on the A-list, the B-List, or even the C-list to start, but with a little love and a whole lot of hard work, it’s possible that all Japan may someday wake up to the music of WAKE UP, GIRLS!
(Source: Sentai Filmworks)
Wake Up, Girls! Shichinin no Idol serves a prequel to the anime series of the same name. I highly recommend watching the movie first because it introduces initial concepts to grasp before venturing into the official anime series. The movie runs initially less than a full hour and offers some basic concepts of the show’s aesthetics.
The concept of music idols is hardly an original idea. It’s been done many times in series such as The Idolmaster, Love Live! School Idol Project, and the AKB0048 franchise. The series takes place in a city environment. By this standard, it’s proven itself that the show relates to people trying to discover themselves and open doors to dreams especially since cities are a welcoming billboard to opportunities. But for Green Leaves Entertainment, it’s running low on talents and not enough opportunities to shine like it once had before. Seeking out opportunities, we meet a normal man by the name of Kouhei Matsuda asking an abnormal question: Do you want to become an idol?
The girls he meets initially gives the cold shoulder and it should be no surprise. Shows with idols often have high expectations with the characters being gifted with talent. As an underdog group, Wake Up, Girls doesn’t start off well in terms performance. Most of the girls has big dreams but the group itself have little hope both mentally and financially. One particular girl named Mayu also becomes a topic of discussion on the web after an event that triggered her resignation from another idol group. Because of that, it’s suspicious what may have happened in the past. Unfortunately in this movie, we never find out why so hold those theories tight for the TV series. Perhaps the length of this movie is an obstacle to prevent this revelation but it’s a flaw that comes to play for other factors as well. Such factors includes characterization as hardly any of the other idols gets their own spotlights but instead collectively tries to radiant themselves as a group.
Wake Up, Girls does build itself well in terms of storytelling from the get-go. It’s straight forward and doesn’t bounce off from its premise. It gets right to the point and doesn’t neglect the fact that the girls all have dreams where each of them does get a little insight on based on their reasons. While the main male protagonist lacks a personality, Matsuda does hold some respect for going through with his work and not giving up. It’s like what people say sometimes, ‘you can do anything if you try’. This applies to the idols as well. The girls do put their efforts in despite running into various troubles. Perhaps the result isn’t exactly what they had hoped for, it still earned themselves a way of self-satisfaction knowing they put their efforts through. On the other hand is the strange comedy and almost monotonous dialogues thrown in various conversations. Matsuda is also a character hard to relate to and seems to lack talent himself.
The animation is fresh but not stellar by any standards. Some of the girls looks similar while none of them particularly stand out. Even Mayu, the prominent idol of the series lack any distinctive features besides her noticeable past. Speaking of which, the idols shown in the past has a more fancy style of artistic make up. The present ones lacks that thanks to a technical storyline point that drives the idols to go by what they have now. It also throws in surprising distractions in the forms of brief fan service to add some flavor. Background colors are natural on most terms and defines some form of realism. The snow falling down the sky near the end of the movie could symbolize a transformation especially for Mayu after her breathtaking confession.
Music is a critical theme of this movie as the idols themselves sing to entertain the audience while following their dreams. By most standards, the songs holds themselves together but the performance lacks any groundbreaking impact. The movements flow well but nothing unique or special comes out of the lyrics. One important factor to note though is that the idols’ voice actresses are fresh to the business. Most of them stars in this movie with their debuting roles and is a welcoming sight to embrace. At many points, it feels like the VA themselves embrace their roles such as Miyuu Okamoto with her enthusiasm.
This movie can feel a bit lacking if you are looking for an engaging plot or character development. The pacing and connection with the girls just doesn’t seem to fit together. On the other hand, it’s gratifying to see their efforts and brief progression. While not at a level of stardom, the music group Wake Up Girls is on its way as they take the first step to success. Wake Up, Girls! Shichinin no Idol serves a babyface so hopefully will mature itself in the TV series. After all, every journey begins with the very first step.
1: Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom
Japanese: Wake Up, Girls！Beyond the Bottom
MAL Score: 7.20
Second movie sequel of Wake Up, Girls!.
However, the latest entry in the series, “Beyond the Bottom” serves as a lackluster conclusion to an otherwise stellar series.
The greatest gripe I had with this show was that it simply lost all the positive aspects that the previous entries had. For instance, “Beyond the Bottom” felt horribly disjointed from the tone and atmosphere that the the TV series and previous movies had.
For instance, there is almost no conflict in this story, aside from the upcoming Idol Festival, which by this point in the series, has become a rather stale plot device. Not to mention, there is no buildup to the festival itself, which makes it seem rather lowly compared to the festival depicted in the TV series.
Another complaint I have would be that the music in this movie is lackluster. Although “Wake Up, Girls!” never boasted a massive soundtrack, they always had a relatively strong, albeit small, selection of songs for viewers to appreciate (“7 Girls War” and “Gokukujo Smile”) come to mind. The new songs introduced in this entry simply do not compare in the slightest. They are unmemorable and, unfortunately, not very catchy either. This is quite disappointing because I always felt that “Wake Up, Girls!” was quite strong in terms of the musical aspect of things.
The animation quality also took a massive nosedive. While ‘Wake Up, Girls!” was never known for its animation quality, as you can probably tell from other reviews, it is quite apparent that the animation is even worse than it was in the previous entries. Faces look odd, the dancing looks stiffer than usual, and there are noticeable shortcuts taken to reduce the amount of animation needed to be produced by the company (which is quite obvious once you see it).
The characters from “Wake Up, Girls!” that many of us have come to know and love suffer from lack of depth. The only characters that really receive any proper characterization would be Nanami, Mayu, President Tange, and Shiho. Everyone else is left in the shadows, merely serving as background noise rather than actual characters. However, I do appreciate how the movie develops I-1 Club member Shiho Iwasaki’s character. I found myself appreciating moments in which she appears, as she proved to be, in most cases, more interesting than the Wake Up, Girls! themselves.
To conclude, “Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom” was disappointing to say the least. In my opinion, it leaves a great big stain on an otherwise fantastic franchise. It is unfortunate that this otherwise good idol anime series ends off tainted with excessive cliches, quality issues, and lack of depth.
If you are a fan of “Wake Up, Girls!” like I am, you’ll want to check this movie out. Just be sure to head in with your expectations low.
Yes the plot is a bit predictable & there’s no real ‘ump’ to the drama. But that’s what makes WUG endearing & to an extent, relate-able.
Coincidentally, I can’t exactly give praise to the characters. I understand with such a large cast, it’s easier to give them a trope or defining trait which captures their entire personality. But sometimes even this feels a tad bland. If you were to remove the faces & voices when they’re in a group scene together : it somewhats blends in together & you can’t quite specify whose line belongs to who.
I will give praise to the production staff. The girls aren’t overly cute.Moments such as when they cry or just doing their shenanigans, it’s not top-tier animation. But the facial expression are just remarkably real, as if this is you or a friend. The actual songs of the idol groups respectively, it does its work.
Did YOUR favorite anime make the cut? Let us know in the comments below!
1. Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom
2. Wake Up, Girls! Shichinin no Idol
3. Wake Up, Girls! Seishun no Kage