RetroCrush offers classic cartoons, for free, online. Here are five movies you must see on the service.
RetroCrush offers anime fans a chance to watch tons of classic movies and shows from decades past for free. However, while old-school fans may be intimately familiar with some of the classic titles in the catalog, others may be overwhelmed by the sprawling collection. Where to start when all is a ‘classic? “
This is far from being an exhaustive list of all the big anime on the platform, but if you want to watch some vintage gems, these are five movies you’ll really have fun with.
Jin-Roh: the wolf brigade
Jin-Roh: the wolf brigade is a nightmarish portrait of an alternate version of Japan where Germany won WWII. In this alternate timeline, Kazuki, a member of the Kerberos Panzer Police, is traumatized after a young girl blows herself up in front of him. What follows is an exploration of fascist government, the horrors of war, and how violence can break people apart in a way that leaves them more like wolves than men.
Jin-roh is written by Mamoru Oshii, most famous for making Ghost in the shell. Some would say this 1999 film lives up to Ghost in the shell in terms of deep philosophical reflections. However, in terms of cold visuals and disturbing images, Jin-roh ranks among the deepest animated films of the 90s. If you like that, a South Korean live-action remake, Illang: the wolf brigade, is on Netflix.
Urusei Yatsura 2: the beautiful dreamer
Urusei yatsura is a classic manga written by Rumiko Takahashi, the same woman who created Ranma 1/2 and Inuyasha. While Urusei Yatsura has had a sprawling run on TV, most fans consider the second film, Urusei Yatsura 2: the beautiful dreamer, as one of the strengths of the franchise. It is a surrealist film that focuses on a day that does not arrive on time.
At the time, Handsome dreamer felt like a departure from manga fans have come to love. Yet over time, many fans re-evaluated the film as a powerful work by its director, Mamoru Oshii – the same person who wrote. Jin-roh and directed Ghost in the shell.
Apple seeds is a cyberpunk anime, adapting the work of Shirow Masamune. The OVA movie focuses on cyber police fighting terrorists, offering a showcase of some of the coolest sci-fi weapons ever brought to animation. The story is fairly straightforward and feels like a draft of the work Masamune will later do on his seminal cyberpunk manga, Ghost in the shell.
At some point in the future, the paradise city of Olympus stands at the perfect intersection of robotics and human culture. Order is maintained by the police, who are on the trail of a violent terrorist who believes that the forces controlling order in Olympus do not have the best interests of humanity at heart.
Memories is an anthology film based on three new manga by Katsuhiro Otomo – the same manga author who created Akira. Otomo directed one of the segments himself, while the other two are entrusted to other acclaimed anime talent. Among the many people involved in this production are Perfect blue director Satoshi Kon, Robot Carnival director Koji Morimoto and Darker than black director Tensai Okamura.
Each of the three segments of Memories takes a simple sci-fi concept and explores the characters that fill these worlds. The first segment, “Magnetic Rose”, focuses on a deep space explorer responding to a strange distress signal from a lifeless ship. The second segment, “Stink Bomb,” focuses on a scientist who accidentally turns into a walking biological weapon while trying to cure the flu. The final play, “Cannon Fodder”, focuses on a boy growing up in a city that constantly needs to fire rows of mounted cannons to fight “the enemy”. Each is simple but deep.
Kite: international version
Sawa is a young girl turned murderer who kills people the police cannot capture. She slaughters corrupt businessmen, pedophiles and other scraps of society that the police want to kill but cannot legally bring. Sawa ends up meeting another assassin who is about his age. They form a bond that could alter the trajectory of Sawa’s life forever.
Kite is a classic extreme anime. Originally released as an OVA, Kite was re-released as a singular film when it was redistributed internationally. On initial release, 15 minutes of Kite were censored because of its extreme content. The International version is the complete package and naturally one of the most viewed animated films on RetroCrush. If you want to know more about this legendary anime, watch Kite: international version.
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