You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps

Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan's experimental music scene, "The Echo of Astro Boy's Footsteps" reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime's legacy. Pic's quaint style, including the narration's over-familiar intimacy in the manner of Chris Marker's "Sunless," will annoy some Western auds, but others, especially fanboys, will be enticed. Asian and music-themed fests should tune in.

With:
With: Matsuo Ohno, Kenji Shibasaki, Ichiki Takeuchi, Sadaji Yamato, Masami Sugiyama, Iwao Takahashi, Atsumi Tashiro, Open Reel Ensemble, Yasuto Yura, Rei Harakami. Narrator: Maki Nomiya.

Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, including the narration’s over-familiar intimacy in the manner of Chris Marker’s “Sunless,” will annoy some Western auds, but others, especially fanboys, will be enticed. Asian and music-themed fests should tune in.

Interesting if standard interviews with Ohno’s colleagues explain the sound pioneer’s impact on them and their art form. Generous anime clips beguile, but the film’s interest level skyrockets when it’s revealed that the revered genius, discussed in the past tense, is actually alive. With typical Japanese politeness, helmers Yuta Tsukinaga and Masanori Tominaga gloss over details of Ohno’s lost years, but the peek into the subject’s current life brims with compassion. Tech credits are a bit rough, although Pardon Kimura’s sound design comes through OK. Archival material, including “Astro Boy” clips, scenes from Ohno’s own helming efforts, and hypnotic music visualizations, save the day.

The Echo of Astro Boy's Footsteps

Japan

Production: A Cinegriot production in association with the Japan Arts Fund. (International sales: Cinegriot, Tokyo.) Produced by Atsuko Ohno, Masashi Sakamoto. Directed by Yuta Tsukinaga, Masanori Tominaga.

Crew: Camera (color, HD), Tominaga; music, Open Reel Ensemble. Reviewed on DVD, Sydney, Oct. 31, 2011. (In Tokyo, Jeonju film festivals.) Running time: 82 MIN.

With: With: Matsuo Ohno, Kenji Shibasaki, Ichiki Takeuchi, Sadaji Yamato, Masami Sugiyama, Iwao Takahashi, Atsumi Tashiro, Open Reel Ensemble, Yasuto Yura, Rei Harakami. Narrator: Maki Nomiya.

More Film

  • This, photo shows the 21st Century

    Comcast, Disney Keep Focus on 21st Century Fox Assets Despite AT&T-Time Warner Battle

    Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, […]

  • Jude Law Captain Marvel

    'Captain Marvel': Jude Law Lands Male Lead Opposite Brie Larson (EXCLUSIVE)

    Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, […]

  • James Mangold Logan BTS

    'Logan' Director James Mangold Sings Praises of His Production Team

    Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, […]

  • The Florida Project IFP Gotham Awards

    IFP's Gotham Awards Give Indie Films a Boost

    Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, […]

  • Jurassic World

    'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' First Footage Shows Chris Pratt Petting Baby Raptor

    Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, […]

  • Ted Sarandos Harvey Weinstein

    Netflix Won't Host Golden Globes Party With Weinstein Company

    Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, […]

  • lady bird saoirse ronan Lucas hedges

    Comedies Speak Truth to Power in Golden Globes Race

    Traversing the worlds of early anime and Japan’s experimental music scene, “The Echo of Astro Boy’s Footsteps” reps a treasure trove for otaku (geeks). Subject Matsuo Ohno called himself a sound designer long before the term came into vogue, and this unassuming docu illustrates how vital his work was to anime’s legacy. Pic’s quaint style, […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content