New on Netflix: Reviewer embraces Anime, hides from politicos

By: Bryan Trude, Feature Editor

There is a lot of pretentiousness amongst Hollywood types. A deep seeded belief that because they are “talented,” and surgically-enhanced enough to earn millions doing things I do in my car when I’m bored, that they somehow know better than the rest of us pee-ons.

Case in point: Jenny McCarthy, whose claim to fame is taking her clothes off for Playboy and dating a man who got famous for talking out of his butt, started going on the talk show circuit telling people that vaccines cause autism. Since then, over 600 people have died from diseases we have vaccines for.

Sometimes, I wonder why I even follow the exploits of these self-important morons.

Oh yeah, because it distracts me from politics.

Even without the recent slapfight election, movies and TV shows serve not only to entertain me, but to give me a place to hide from all the mind-numbing silliness of politics that seem to coat the news channels like icing on a cake.

Unfortunately, these two worlds collided not too long ago when childlike funnyman Zach Galifianakis toked up a joint of (fake) weed on “Real Time with Bill Maher” during his Oct. 29 appearance, pushing California’s (failed) Prop 19, the California initiative to legalize marijuana.

Politics and self-important so-called, “movie stars” in one place? That’s it. I can’t take it anymore. I’m going to crawl under a rock and watch a cartoon with people I’ve never heard of.

Yeah, that’ll keep me safe from the big bad politi-tainment monsters.

Xenosaga: The Animation (2005)

Not Rated

Director: Tsuyoshi Koga, Shigeyasu Yamauchi

Starring the voices of: Stephanie Wittels, Luci Christian, Brittney Karbowski, Greg Ayers

“Xenosaga” is the Japanese animated telling of the story of the PS2 game “Xenosaga Episode 1: Der Will zur Macht.”

In the series, humanity has left Earth and settled the stars, losing the location of our home planet to the midst of time and space, and is locked in a deadly war for survival against the alien, Gnosis.

To fight back against the alien aggressors, engineer Shion Uzuki (Wittels) develops the battle android KOS-MOS (Christian). KOS-MOS, however, turns out to have functions and a mission Uzuki did not know about, and winds up drawing Uzuki into a tale of political intrigue and a battle for survival to uncover the past.

The animation is top notch and intricately produced, something I find unusual in modern anime. The English voice acting is passable, though some parts still lack an appropriate emotional inflection that plagues the genre.

The story can be hard to follow, and suffers a little from “Star Wars prequel” syndrome: if you’ve played the game before, you already know what’s going to happen. Chances are, if you weren’t excited about the series when you saw the title, this is going to be hard to get into and stay with for all 12 episodes.

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