Archive for August 24th, 2010

Death and Taxes

Just another typical Tuesday.

In which I yawn.

I was in the midst of thinking up a topic to blog about today when I checked Twitter and was informed that Satoshi Kon, a Japanese anime director (Perfect Blue, Paranoia Agent, Tokyo Godfathers, Paprika) has died at age 47.

The reason I think this is worth mentioning is that there are very few directors whose movies I tend to like, in general. I like movies based on the individual movie, and I rarely even take notice of who directed it, even if they’re “acclaimed” or whatever. The only American director I can think of whose movies I tend to like is Christopher Nolan, and that’s largely because I really like Batman and he did a good job with the franchise (not that one could do much worse than the previous Batman movies). I’ve also liked other movies of his, however, so I can say that I tentatively like his work.

On the other hand, there are two Japanese directors who have captivated me since I first discovered them, and Satoshi Kon is one. The first movie of his I ever saw was Tokyo Godfathers, which was randomly recommended to me by Netflix because I’d put some other anime in my queue that was similar. That movie was so charming that I added other movies of his, Paprika and Millenium Actress, and I loved them too. I intend to watch his other movies that are out as well, but have to work up to them, as I don’t do well with gore (even animated). Since he was young, I was looking forward to his future movies, but now I can’t do that anymore. There is one movie he’s been working on for the past two years, that I’m sure they’ll finish and release next year, as planned, but after that…

It’s one thing to have someone whose work you admire die at the ripe old age of 80 or 90. I live in fear of the day Hayao Miyazaki dies (my other beloved Japanese director), because he’s certainly getting up there, but even if he died this week (gods forfend), he will have left an amazing legacy behind him. Satoshi Kon was so young, and had so many wonderful works ahead of him, and now none of them will be realized. The charm, dramatic flair and depth of his movies will never be replicated, and it brings tears to my eyes.

I think this weekend I might rent some of his movies and have a Satoshi Kon-fest in his honor. As it is, the world has become just a little bit less awesome.


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