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Recommendation: Summer Wars (2009)

April 1, 2014

Mamoru Hosoda’s Summer Wars began as an olive branch between me and my guy. In my desire to get the creeps by watching a horror film on a Saturday night, I had to compromise and watch an anime first. Slightly unenthusiastic sighs escaped us both upon initially agreeing to our respective deals. Fortunately, Summer Wars’ entrenchment in Japanese culture and philosophy not only stimulated my brain with basic insights, but it also implanted new ideas and theories for my over-active mind to mill over in the ongoing days.

Basking in the throws of puberty, Kenji, a math whiz and part-time moderator of the socio-economically involved Facebook/Google of Japan, OZ, is convinced to take a break from work by his crush Natsuki who needs a favor. Kenji soon discovers the favor is passing as Natsuki’s boyfriend on her grandmother’s 90th birthday. What begins as an innocent white lie soon takes a turn in unbelievable reality when Kenji’s math skills involves him with a mysterious online hacker who finds a way to shake up OZ and those dependent on its system.

Summer Wars is phenomenal. It’s a whirlwind of colors and animated textures that place you directly in its subtransient future where the spirits of John Lennon and Yoko Ono are the gatekeepers. It makes a venomous villain out of a concept as the hacker’s tampering begins to affect traffic, water flow, distress signals, and space probs; a concept not far removed from our own technological advancements. Summer Wars in turn becomes an extremely complex tale of the battle between good and evil by muddling the details with simple human error, technological growth, and the will to survive. While Summer Wars has a tendency to vere off from its action at times with overblown, dramatic situations, it stands as an impressive film that I highly recommend seeing.



One Comment leave one →
  1. April 1, 2014 8:22 PM

    I will definitely be adding this to my list of movies to watch!

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