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Have you ever thought about what it’s like to be a vampire? What if I told you that there are people that there are vampires out there and you could be one too? No, I’m not talking about those crazy people that try to be real-life vampires by drinking blood, but those who put a mental strain on others relationship-wise. The crazy world of Hiroya Oku’s GANTZ has been known to freak readers out with its violence and monstrous aliens. Midway through the series, things took an interesting turn as Oku introduced the Vampires, a group of individuals whose existence is to make the Gantz players’ lives a living hell. While not true “vampires”, the Vampires in this series reflect the desires of those who want to drain your life emotionally. In essence, we can all be “vampires”.
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Don’t you just love that smirk? In my opinion, he was the best character in the 2nd part.
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If there’s one thing that makes Hiroya Oku’s GANTZ highly entertaining, it’s the various number of personalities that partake in the deadly alien missions. You got your wholesome characters and you have your morally corrupt ones. One crazy character in particular is the rival character to Kei Kurono, Shion Izumi. He is a extremely troubled youth who only seems to find solace & peace when hunting aliens. When Izumi was out of the game, he resorted to violent means to thrust himself back in. His character is a reflection of emotionally-disturbed youths who aren’t raised properly and/or have been disappointed in society.
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After seeing the 1st Gantz movie, I was wondering whether the 2nd part would have a chance of premiering in America. The 1st part drew much attention and made it big at the Japanese box office. This past Saturday, Japan Society fulfilled my wish as they showed GANTZ: Perfect Answer, the conclusion to the Gantz live-action movies, to a sold-out audience. Was it a satisfying end? Let’s just say that things started out with a bang, but ended with a few pitfalls.
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If you’re living in the New York area, Japan Society’s JAPAN CUTS will be happening this month. This Thursday will mark the North American premiere of Osamu Tezuka's epic biography of Siddhartha, BUDDHA. It will be shown on Thursday, July 7 at 6:45pm. If you can’t make it this Thursday, no worries. A repeat showing will be on Sunday, July 10 at 12:30pm.
And on Saturday, July 9, Japan Society & the New York Asian Film Festival will be co-presenting the live-action movie adaptations of Hiroya Oku's popular sci-fi manga series, GANTZ. The first part will be shown at 12:30pm, followed by the North American premiere of the 2nd part "PERFECT ANSWER" at 3:00pm. For those who were horrified by the dubbing of the first part shown back in January, both movies will be in Japanese with English subtitles.
Tickets ($12 each) are limited. Please call the Japan Society Box Office at (212) 715-1258, Mon. - Fri. 11 am - 6 pm, Weekends 11 am - 5 pm. *UPDATE: Both Gantz movies are SOLD OUT.*
I’ll be reviewing GANTZ & interviewing Gantz fans this weekend. NY Japanese culture fans, see you guys there!
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