Masaaki Yuasa (director)
06 December 2017 (released)
30 November 2017
This animation from Masaaki Yuasa may be on the bonkers side in parts but it has an enchanting flow mainly because of the very strange but engaging character at the centre of it.
However, before that we are introduced to Ka who is a moody sod who having moved from Tokyo is living with his father and grandfather in a small fishing village. His passion is music though there is little outlet until his schoolmates suggest he joins their band. They sail off to an island where they start to play and this attracts Lu, a mermaid of unquenchable curiosity. She takes to the music instantly dancing with unbounded joy and there follows some barmy dance sequences that look as if they have been choreographed with the aid of an ultra-bouncy rubber ball.
Problem is the village’s combination of superstition and narrow-mindedness (plus their greed) towards the merpeople leads them to capture Lu with a view to exploiting her. In fact, they nearly kill her, luckily her father in a brilliant sequence rescues her but at a great cost to himself.
Both communities appear at odds entrenched by hate and ignorance until the town is hit by a disaster forcing each to square up to their prejudices.
It’s probably too long and it is not that subtle dealing with the themes of greed and intolerance, which are laid on with a trowl. But this unsophistication is forgiven because of the eccentric animation and the enchanting golden hearted Lu.