Yu Aoi Film Discussion – Tekkonkinkreet

May 15, 2009 — 11 Comments

Let’s start with what the film is about:
Tekkon Kinkreet is an animated film adaptation of the Black and White manga series by Taiyou Matsumoto, directed by Michael Arias (Animatrix). The name of the film is a pun on “Tekkin Concrete”, the Japanese term for reinforced concrete. It tells the story of two street kids, tough Kuro (Black) and innocent Shiro (White) living in a fictional city known as Treasure Town, a city that is filled with crooks and the yakuza.

Genre: Animation, Drama, Comedy, Action with violence.
With the voices of: Kazunari Ninomiya, Yu Aoi, Yusuke Iseya, Kankuro Kudo
Duration: nearly 2hrs

Spoilers ahead! Of the film and manga~~~

Tekkonkinkreet - Poster jpI enjoyed the film so much, that I ended up buying the American translation of the manga. The film, I believe, works as a faithful adaptation with the exception of the use of colors… after all, the manga IS black and white. This is why the film takes a step back and becomes richer in backgrounds, colors and textures – Tekkonkinkreet is just a pleasure to watch through and through.

Add to that a great voice acting cast, and you got yourself something worth checking out with subtitles.

The film begins with the introduction of Kuro (Ninomiya) and Shiro (Aoi) in the streets of Treasure Town when they’re about to attack another bunch of punks trying to take over the city, but no! This is the Cats’ territory, and you don’t mess with these crazy kids. They jump over cars, they climb over building and throw themselves to the concrete abyss without fear. The action sequence are out of this world with a great combination of wonderfully illustrated backgrounds and 3D camera movements.

/* EDIT May 19th 2009*/

I found a really great post over at The Art of the Title Sequence. This is a little of what they have to say…

The opening title sequence for Michael Arias’ masterpiece, “Tekkonkinkreet” surpasses the initial intention of Art of the Title in that the incredible, over-ten minute span between the start of the film and Arias’ director credit utilizes so much more than our limited conception of the possibilities of the form.

They also have the intro on SD and HD, alongside some audio clips with director Michael Arias, and Plaid.

/* end of edit*/

The film is quite violent, but it has a certain balance… a certain innocence brought in by Shiro’s borderline naivety, but he knows stuff… he feels things, and is more in-tune with the surroundings than he leads to believe. Kuro brings in the crazy, the blood… the scary. He’s got terrible inner demons, and Shiro is the only one keeping him grounded, but not for long. This is why I love this film so much, because it plays with the concept of the Yin and Yang, the opposites who complement each other.

If you ever get the DVD, there’s a pretty nifty Making Of in which director Michael Arias documents his struggles making this film, especially the problems he ran into when making the Shiro’s dream sequence. I was only a bit disappointed on the little to no mention on how the voice acting cast work, because that’s also one of the fine points in the film.

Also… Yu was born to play this role. LOL’ – Tekkon Trivia? Well, Yu’s got two beauty marks near her right eye… you know the ones? Shiro’s manga version has two beauty marks near his left eye. Well, in the film, Shiro’s beauty marks are shifted to the right… coincidence? Plus, when Shiro smiles… it looks exactly like Smiling Yu on Hula Girls. XD

Tekkonkinkreet - Manga - Shiro Tekkonkinkreet - Manga - Shiro Tekkonkinkreet - Manga - Shiro
Tekkonkinkreet - Manga - Shiro Tekkonkinkreet - Manga - Shiro

Yu as Shiro was totally out of this world. It helped that it was an animated film, and all Yu needed to do was use her voice to become someone, and it really worked. She becomes this kid, saying the craziest things… you know, things that make no sense because you’re either a little kid, or you’ve smoked really good weed. From things like showing off how Shiro can count, or the philosophical “why do I feel so blue when the sky is black?” – paraphrasing here~~

Plus! Shiro totally saves the day on this one ;)

Story:★★★★☆ 
Characters:★★★★☆ 
Direction:★★★★¼ 
Acting:★★★★¼ 
Visuals:★★★★¼ 
Overall:★★★★¼ 
Yu Aoi Participation:★★★★☆ 
Yu Aoi Performance:★★★★☆ 

Favorite Scene: There’s so many great scenes with Shiro on this one, and like I said… Shiro saves the day on this one. I could choose that… but I’ll choose the scene in which Shiro gets taken away, after the incident with the “tough” guys.

Here are some posters and graphics, fanart credit goes to tobiee

11 responses to Yu Aoi Film Discussion – Tekkonkinkreet

  1. Hmmm… I really thought this would get more hits. I mean, it IS a great film… and there’s even a cool link to the intro to The Art of the Title Sequence. Can’t get cooler than that…

  2. Alright first post!

    Wow, this is a really great film. Much deeper and symbolic than most animated movies. The visuals and the story were amazing! I admit I was turned off from watching this movie because the characters looked so ugly on the DVD cover, but it turned out that the animation is incredibly well-done and extremely detailed….they’re still ugly though! haha.

    Now onto Yu,….her voice acting was brilliant and yes i agree, she was born to play the role of Shiro. I haven’t watched Tekkonkinkreet in english yet, but I’m sure whoever voiced Shiro in that version came nowhere near to giving the performance that Yu gave. She just makes this film! Are you starting to notice a trend here? It seems like every film she’s in, she somehow manages to steals the show eventhough she’s almost never the main character. For example, in movies like Welcome to the Quiet Room, Don’t Laugh at my Romance, Tokyo, Rainbow Song, Honey and Clover, Turtles Swim Faster Than Expected, and All About Lily Chou Chou, she’s a minor character, but its her performances alone that really stand out and leave an impression on the viewer!…or maybe its just me that feels this way cause I happen to have a crush on her..?

    Moving on, my favorite scene is also when they take Shiro away from the hospital in order to protect him. Kuro says some mean things to Shiro but only because its in his best interests…pretty sad. I also liked the part where that flying assassin guy is beating up on Kuro and Shiro says something like, “I’m small, but I’m a giant to that ant” and then saves Kuro by throwing the bottle.

    Overall it was a great story, made even better with Yu’s adorable voice acting. I am a bit disappointed in the “Making Of”, because they didn’t show Yu or anyone else in the studio doing the voices.

    By the way, I probably would have never watched this film if it wasn’t for your high praises, so thanks.

  3. You know, I’ve noticed animation fans love this film, but there isn’t much interest in the film from Yu Fans – which is kinda sad. I guess it’s because Yu’s face is not in it, but come on! Yu fans can’t miss this one!

    Sometime ago, Amazon suggested Tekkon on my recommendation page, I also just disregarded it (I wasn’t Yu’s fan then, though). I saw it during my Yu-fication xD and then realized I had dismissed it!

    Yes… it’s the “hit-you-in-the-face-like-a-meteor” phenomenon and the “Yu-makes-this-film” comments. I dunno if we’d be the best to comment on that… though Ueno Juri was pretty good on Turtles.

    I agree with the making of, I was interested how the voice acting worked in the production considering it was pretty great voice acting.

    I’m glad you watched it! You’re the first Yu fan that I get to watch Tekkon! xD So no prob!


    On the character design, well… it’s a different manga style. The manga is just like it, doodle-y and all void of color. I liked it. I appreciate clean clear manga lines, beautiful and perfect panels, but Tekkon is more my style. xD

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