Thursday, February 24, 2011

Movie of the Week - Summer Wars

It has been awhile since we've been out to the movies. This is an anime movie that my daughter owns. She loves it and talked me into watching it with her last night.The story of this 2009 release concerns a Japanese high school math whiz and all-round nerd who is asked by a girl in his class to accompany her to her family ancestral home in the countryside. She pitches it as a summer job. He reluctantly goes and finds that a huge family celebration is just beginning for the girl's 90-year-old grandmother. To fulfill a promise the girl made to her grandmother (that the next time she visits she would bring her boyfriend) she introduces him to the family as her boyfriend. Much cute awkwardness ensues.

In the background of the story we are made aware of a world-wide computer network called Oz. Oz seems to have started as a Facebook type of application but has morphed into the prominent way that people and business interact with the Internet and each other. A malevolent Artificial Intelligence has been let lose in Oz causing widespread trouble. It is up to the math kid, his pretend girlfriend and her family (an old well-respected Japanese family with many connections) to safe the day. Why is it up to them? Well, you're just going to have to watch the movie.

It's a nice blend of cyberspace dueling (the poster shows all the character's Oz avatars) and Japanese family life. If you can imagine such a thing. If you've got kids into anime I'd recommend it.

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