The popularity of the anime is kind of a monkey paw. When blockbuster hits or beloved classics are advertised as receiving a movie (animated or not), chances are the news will be met more with hesitation and doubt than excitement.
This is because movies based on cartoons often change so much material that they barely resemble the original. Loose adaptations and condensations like Netflix’s Death threat or the Ruroni Kenshin The trilogy at least maintains the basic aesthetic and spirit of their original materials, while these examples completely rewrite the story, tone, and characters – for better or for worse.
ten The daily life of high school students took away the fun
The daily life of high school students is a silly gag series about how awkward but memorable adolescence is. None of this is present in the live-action film, which feels more like a mean look at youth than a trip down memory lane. The film adapts remarkable skits but replaces wacky punchlines with literal slaps in the face.
Apparently this happened because Director Daigo Matsui identified with the characters in a negative way. Seeing the antics of the main trio, he reflected on his own childhood years and felt “sad and embarrassed”, motivating him to return to work. Everyday life “objectively.” This bitter approach didn’t go over well with fans of the original hijinks.
9 Attack on Titan Parts 1 and 2 have turned into a zombie apocalypse
The The attack of the Titans the films follow the basic principle but beyond that they hardly count as adaptations. Here, the Titans were born from the failed experiments of modern military super-soldiers instead of an ancient lineage. Basically, the movies rewrote the groundbreaking dark fantasy into a go-anywhere zombie apocalypse, where the living dead happen to be the size of a skyscraper.
Another major change concerns the characters, some of which have been changed or removed completely (eg Levi does not exist). Above all, the main trio (Eren, Armin and Mikasa) never go their separate ways since they save the world in the movies. In the manga, Eren becomes the latest villain who aims to end all life outside of Heaven as his childhood friends desperately try to kill him before it’s too late.
8 Dragonball Evolution has become a high school rom-com
Dragon ball evolution is one (if not) the worst live-action anime adaptations ever made. The biggest flaw in the American remake is that it was apparently directed by filmmakers who had no understanding of Dragon Ball, it also didn’t sound like they cared in the first place.
Dragon ball evolution downgrades Goku’s galactic saga into a high school romantic comedy. Worse, the characters were rewritten so much that they barely looked like the originals. Goku and Bulma still stalk the Dragon Balls, but Goku – now a nervous teenager instead of an avid combatant – is driven more by a crush than a quest to be the best. Dragon ball creator Akira Toriyama angrily denied the film, as his Writer Ben Ramsey apologized for his involvement.
7 Howl’s Moving Castle became an anti-war film
Howl’s Moving Castle condenses his two source novels and tackles different themes, completely modifying the story and the subtext. Rather than letting Sophie focus solely on personal concepts like love, fate, and age, she also witnessed the futility of war. These anti-war sentiments were informed by director Hayao Miyazaki’s anger at the then ongoing invasion of Iraq.
This change wasn’t a bad thing, however, as writer Diana Wynne Jones loved the movie so much that she decided to write book sequels. She was able to publish a third Howl’s moving castle entry (that is to say House with many paths), but sadly passed away before the fourth was finished.
6 Tales From Earthsea has been disowned by the author
To the other side of Howl’s Moving Castle is Tales of Earthsea, considered the weakest Studio Ghibli film which also annoyed the writers of the original novel. The film condenses the first four volumes of Ursula K. Le Guin’s series and because of this she felt most of the context and subtlety was lost. She shared her thoughts in a letter to director Goro Miyazaki (Hayao’s son), and it’s best summed up in his quote “This is not my book. It’s your movie. It’s a good movie.”
That said, Le Guin was still amused by the anime (which she praised the animation for) compared to the Earthsea 2004 TV series. She furiously denied the latter, accusing her of whitewashing the anti-racist themes of her novels.
5 Ghost In The Shell surpassed the original manga
Ghost in the shell is considered one of the most important animated and cyberpunk films ever to be made. Unsurprisingly, many compare it to Blade runner or even put Major Kusanagi’s rediscovery of humanity above that of Deckard. The thing is, his manga told a simpler story.
The Ghost in the shell manga is an action-packed generic cyberpunk story, where the Major is a sarcastic action hero instead of a stoic android with an existential crisis. The manga also has more explicit content, while the film examines gender, sexuality, and identity with maturity and restraint. The film had such an influence that it dictated all the adaptations of Ghost in the shell after that, making the manga a relic.
4 Metropolis is a collage of the works of Osamu Tezuka
Based on Osamu Tezuka’s manga, Metropolis is more of a fusion of Tezuka’s works and the 1927 film than a simple adaptation. The main changes include the addition of Astro boy antihero Rock, a stronger emphasis on class division and the robot’s struggle for emancipation (a Astro boy principle), and less manga spotlight on the focal robot’s identity crisis (Tima in the film, Mitchi in the manga).
What’s odd is that the manga, like his movie, is another loose adaptation. Apparently Tezuka saw a still image from the 1927 film – the birth of the female robot – and continued from there. While the manga has some thematic similarities to the film (particularly the income inequality), it was a coincidence since Tezuka never had time to watch Fritz Lang’s magnum opus.
3 GoShogun: the Time Stranger replaced Mecha with thoughts on death
GoShogun was one of many mecha anime from the 80s, and it stood out for its light parody of the genre. His film, on the other hand, has more in common with Perfect blue and is a surreal reflection on the inevitability of death. In reality, The stranger of time does not mention or present any giant robot, limiting its action to regular shootings and melee duels.
Which makes The stranger of time unique is that it was deliberate; the creators wanted this experimental film to be the farewell of the GoShogun team. To compare, The stranger of time what’s this Logan was at the X Men movies, but for GoShogun and mecha anime. The film fell under the radar, but it reappeared as a cult favorite that its fans say needs more love.
2 Digimon: The movie had Angela and her friends trying to watch “Mega Giants”
Digimon: the movie it’s four films in one: three Digimon titles (Digimon Adventure, Digimon Adventure: Our War Game !, and Digimon adventure 02) piled up, with Angela Anaconda like connective tissue. Due to a rewritten story that was more about Angela and her friends trying to watch “Mega Giants” (the in-universe Digimon) instead of the titular creatures, Digimon: the movie is more of an adaptation than a localized export. It is also incredibly terrible.
Made when American producers confused the anime with the regular Saturday morning cartoons, Digimon: the movie has become one of the most despised anime locations ever. Anyone curious about this abomination will face a difficult fossil dig, as a complex copyright dispute has halted any re-release, both physical and streaming.
1 Warriors Of The Wind was really Heavy Metal-Lite
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind first arrived in America in 1985, not 2005, as many remember. Indeed, in the 80s, the environmental parable of Studio Ghibli was reworked in the Heavy metal-esque Wind warriors. The Americanized anime cut 22 minutes of non-action scenes and rewrote the story, re-casting the benevolent Ohmu in a villainous light and turning everyone into generic action heroes.
Director Hayao Miyazaki was so enraged by this that he and Studio Ghibli implemented a strict “no cuts” clause on their future releases. by Nausicaa True English dubbing and other Ghibli films wouldn’t arrive in the West until the 2000s, when Disney struck a deal that followed the tenure. Today, The warriors of the wind only exists in rare VHS tapes which can be purchased on eBay for around $ 50.
NEXT: Studio Ghibli: 10 Celebrities You Didn’t Know Nicknamed The Movies
Demon Slayer: 10 most cliché characters, ranked
About the Author