HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Devil to Pay, The
Gypsy
Lost in London
Divorce Italian Style
Becky
Salon Kitty
Misbehaviour
Charles, Dead or Alive
Gretel and Hansel
Mademoiselle
Tunnel, The
India Song
Last Rhino, The
Made in Hong Kong
Ring of Spies
Rom Boys: 40 Years of Rad
Pocketful of Miracles
The Tomb: Devil's Revenge
Sidecar Racers
Space Dogs
Out/Marriage
Safety Last!
Bride Who Has Returned from Hell, The
Show Boat
Savage
City Called Dragon, A
I Used to Go Here
Six Suspects
Still the Water
Not Now, Comrade
I'm Thinking of Ending Things
Wives of the Skies
Two Heads Creek
Next Stop, Greenwich Village
Captain, The
Great Wall, A
Trout, The
Zorba the Greek
Horror Crowd, The
Matthias & Maxime
   
 
Newest Articles
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Tempo - Gallery One
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 1 - Welcome Once Again to Manchester!
Transformative Apocalypses: Phase IV and Southland Tales
The Happiest Days of Their Lives: The Guinea Pig on Blu-ray
Faced Poe: Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations Starring Bela Lugosi on Blu-ray
Hard Luck, Buster: The Cameraman on Blu-ray
At the Hop: Mr. Vampire on Blu-ray
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
   
 
  Paul's Miraculous Adventures Far Out Fairytale
Year: 1976
Director: Hiroshi Sasakawa, Mizuho Nishikubo
Stars: Sumiko Shirakawa, Keiko Yokozawa, Yoko Asagami, Isamu Taronaka, Toru Ohira
Genre: Animated, Weirdo, Fantasy, TV Series, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  8 (from 1 vote)
Review: On his birthday, yo-yo wielding youngster Paul (Sumiko Shirakawa) receives a cuddly toy as a gift from his parents. While Pakkun (Yoko Asagami) looks like a fairly ordinary plush toy, in reality he’s the keeper of a portal between Earth and an alternate dimension known as the Land of Wonders. Journeying alongside his lovely girlfriend Nina (Keiko Yokozawa) and her dog Doppe (Isamu Taronaka), who can talk, fly using his ears and sports a funky leisure suit in these new surroundings, Paul explores the fantastical world of living toys. But Nina is kidnapped by outsized evil invader, Bel Satan (Toru Ohira) who plots nothing less than world domination. Armed with his trusty magic yo-yo, Paul and co. fight monsters, win friends and discover an array of delights as they battle to save the world.

Given that fantasy is a genre with limitless possibilities, it’s curious why so much contemporary fare confines itself to the familiarities of Celtic fantasy, long since bled dry by legions of J.R.R. Tolkien imitators. By contrast, this ceaselessly inventive anime serial from the late 1970s, well and truly unshackles the imagination. Paul’s Miraculous Adventures is seriously trippy stuff. Who needs psychedelic drugs when its animators give us characters dancing atop giant ice-cream cones, whole worlds fashioned from candy, a mind-altering journey between universes a la 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), or crystalline flowers that hold human souls. It conjures a vast and wondrous array of outlandish characters that come across like an attempt to fuse the Jungian whimsies of Windsor McCay, the fairylands of Cicely Mary Barker, and the surreal super-villainy imagined by Steve Ditko in the pages of Doctor Strange.

The animation matches the kooky concepts and pulls off a number of astounding visual coups, including the nightmarish first appearance by Bel Satan as a colossal, photorealistic visage in the sky. Being a children’s story, this marked a change of pace for Tatsunoko Studios, sort of Japan’s answer to Marvel Comics with their roster of angst-ridden superheroes like Hurricane Polymer (1974), Casshan: Robot Hunter (1973) and the enduring Science Ninja Team Gatchaman (1972) which went on to cult fame in its Americanized guise as Battle of the Planets. Manga artist-turned-studio head Tatsuo Yoshida was the brains behind Paul’s Miraculous Adventures, having hatched classics like Speed Racer (1967) and Yattaman (1977), both of which were recently re-imagined as live action movies. Yoshida co-founded the studio with his brothers Kenji and Toyoharu (who adopted the pen-name Ippei Kuri and became the Stan Lee of Tatsunoko), but sadly succumbed to liver cancer in 1977.

Early episodes run the risk of being repetitive, as Paul saves Nina from an elaborate death-trap only for Bel Satan to whisk her away, time and again. But the series soon rights itself into an arresting odyssey and Nina - who became something of a fetish figure for fans - grows into a capable heroine, given a chance to kick butt with her magical makeup case. Woven through the story is a winning streak of humanism which coupled by an offbeat use of Christian iconography might explain why the series became so popular throughout Europe and Italy in particular.

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 3877 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: