Shades of 60s New Wave experimentalism invade the anime genre in this stylish, surreal story of love, yakuza gangsters and life inside the belly of a whale.
Nishi, a struggling comic writer, meets up with his childhood crush, the voluptuous Myon, for whom he still nurses a timid obsession. When a soccer mad yakuza goes bananas in Myon’s family’s cafe, Nishi is propelled – via a psychedelic brush with death – into a kinetic car chase, as he, Myon and her sister, Yan, flee the gangsters’ wrath. Things take a further turn for the surreal when their car careens off a bridge, only to be swallowed by a whale. Exploring the interior of the creature, the trio encounter a grizzled hermit living in the belly of this huge underwater mammal.
Featuring a psychedelic mishmash of animation styles, a surrealist aesthetic and a disdain for the conservative linear approach of conventional narrative, Mind Game provocatively teases at the boundaries of animation. —Melbourne International Film Festival 2006
Masaaki Yuasa was born on 16 March 1965 in Fukuoka, Japan. He is an anime television and film director, screenwriter, storyboard artist and animator known for his wild free form style.
His most known series “The Tatami Galaxy” won the Grand Prize in animation at the 2010 Japan Media Arts Festival, held annually at the National Art Center in Tokyo.
Masaaki Yuasa’s early career in animation include directing the OP and ED of the 1990 anime, Chibi Maruko-chan as well as the 5th and 6th seasons’ OP and the 3rd and 4th seasons’ ED for Crayon Shin-chan. Along with a small selection of Crayon Shin-chan episodes, he also directed episode 10 of the 1994 anime, The Hakkenden.
Yuasa was also a key staff member as Animation Designer, Character Designer, and Supervising Animator on the short film, “Noiseman Sound Insect”, which was released in 1997. This short film marked the start of Yuasa’s long standing career with Studio 4°C, a studio notorious for their abstract take on animation… read more