Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Let's Talk Anime : Evangelion 1.01 You are (not) alone

This week I'm going to talk about Evangelion 1.0 You are (not) alone, which is a redefining of Neon Genesis Evangelion with a lot of the "boring" parts removed... or at least that's what some people have described it as. It's part of a series of movies called 'Rebuild the Evangelion'.

First off let me start with mentioning that I love Neon Genesis Evangelion. I own all the original DVD release, directors cut, movies and the Platinum release. This movie as an Evangelion fan came under 2 categories for me, good for people who haven't experienced Neon Genesis Evangelion and mildly disappointing but mostly good for original fans.

The plot of Evangelion 1.0 is Shinji Ikari is sent for by his estranged father, Gendo at the beginning of the film. As he wanders around the town, which has been shut down over an emergency announcement, he is caught in the crossfire between the U.N. army and the fourth Angel. Rescued by Lt. Colonel Misato Katsuragi, Shinji is brought to Tokyo-3 and NERV headquarters, where he is pressured by Gendo, NERV's Supreme Commander, into piloting the Evangelion Unit-01 against the Angel because the other Evangelion pilot, the mysterious Rei Ayanami, is too injured to do so. After the initial fight, Shinji is taken in by Misato as her new housemate and enrolled in middle school. The film portrays Shinji's attempts to "settle in" with his new found life alongside Misato, Rei, and the other characters while continuing to defend Tokyo-3 and the world from the coming Angels.

Unfortunately the English dub of this was a disappointment for me when it came to voice actors because the only originals to come back were Shinji Ikari's voice actor Spike Spencer and Misato Katsuragi's voice actor Alison Keith, but there performances weren't as good as in the original anime series and movies. Also the voice actors chosen from FUNimation for the other rolls were hit and miss when it came to the roles. As far as the overall quality of the voice acting it's so different to the way the original was recorded and fans of Neon Genesis Evangelion like me will have noticed that only an extremely small amount of dialogue seems to be the same and you'll end up running the original dialogue in your head as each familiar scene comes up and thinking 'What the...? This doesn't sound right?' and that's because the script was re-written for the Japanese version and it's 2 different dubbing companies that did the series and Evangeion 1.01. Honestly I think that newcomers to Evangelion will enjoy this while long time fans will love the look and flow of the movie but have gripes about various things, depending on the fan.

As far as the movie goes I recommend watching it regardless of seeing the series or not, but fans who haven't seen it you will enjoy it, but complain about different things. Also if you have seen the series, the story of the movie covers the first 6 episodes and if you don't watch it you don't need to feel like you have to.

Which do you prefer? The Rebuild the Evangelion movies or the original anime?

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