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154 Ratings


Directed by Eric Khoo
Japan, Singapore, 2011
Animation, Biography, Drama
  • Japanese
  • English


Tatsumi celebrates the life of Japanese comic artist, Yoshihiro Tatsumi. As he becomes successful, he redefines the manga landscape with an alternative genre for adults—and his work plunges into the darker aspects of life.

Tatsumi Directed by Eric Khoo

Critics reviews

The greatly abridged autobiographical content (the book is more than 800 pages long) is enhanced by Khoo’s inspired interweaving of animated versions of Tatsumi’s very adult short manga stories. It goes without saying that the visual style of the animation is evocative of Tatsumi’s style on the page. Tatsumi brings to mind the Harvey Pekar hybrid autobiographical film American Splendor.
July 14, 2013
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What are people saying?

  • mpho3's rating of the film Tatsumi

    Now in his mid-70s, Tatsumi says, "I found hope and life only in imagination." This is appropriate for the father of Gekiga. Aimed at adults, gekiga stories depict the "inner man," from dreams and hopes to fears and obsessions. The film, rendered in his hand-drawn style, shares the artist's life story and dramatizes some of his best known dark tales. I like how the two were blended into one film.

  • Mugino's rating of the film Tatsumi

    There's an inherent bias in all autobiographies but "Tatsumi" is about perspective, not "truth" - whatever that may be. "A Drifting Life" even features a fictionalized Tatsumi, named Katsumi. In Khoo's rendition, Tatsumi and his short stories speak for themselves and the spare, primitive animation is evocative of the monochromatic pulp stock of the "rental manga" that spawned the gekiga genre. Tezuka would be proud.

  • CJ Roy's rating of the film Tatsumi

    Tatsumi's work looks interesting but does not benefit at all from the transfer to film, except for Beloved Monkey.Add in an overbearing, subpar score by Khoo's brother and the odd juxtaposition of Tatsumi's works to biography really don't flow. Of course, that is the directors fault.

  • albertofarina's rating of the film Tatsumi

    Un incrocio miracoloso fra biografia e film a episodi, un omaggio affezionato al fumettaro Yoshihiro Tatsumi. Qualcuno lamenterà un'animazione semplicissima, ma i fumetti sono fumetti e fumetti dovrebbero restare, anche quando, come qui, si muovono sullo schermo. Bellissimo.

  • Abhimanyu Ghosh's rating of the film Tatsumi

    Beautifully animated, the film is less a biography of Tatsumi and more of a collection of some of his short works interspersed with personal struggles while growing up. The short works in the film are breathtaking to say the least and though he continuously asserts throughout the film that it's drawing the manga that gives him joy, Tatsumi is definitely a short story writer in almost the same leagues as O'Henry.

  • Aaken's rating of the film Tatsumi

    A very successful half live footage half animation documentary about one of the important masters of Japanese manga. The director managed to create a middle ground between the life of the artist, his work and our imagination. Inspiring.

  • Hani's rating of the film Tatsumi

    The film didn't do any effort to make an overall narrative as great as Tatsumi's short stories. There is a huge difference between the stories segments and the rest of the film. "Occupied" is my favorite segment.

  • David R Williams's rating of the film Tatsumi

    Fascinating look at the life of Japanese manga artist Yoshihiro Tatsumi told in the style of his own drawings. For those who seem "offended" by said style...clearly your view of art and animation is as pedestrian as it comes. Go watch Disney and leave this to the adults.

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