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Oseam - One of Anime's Best


6 Nov 2003
I hope some others have seen this because I've been crying for 77 minutes str8!

OSEAM is an Anime from South Korea, by director Seong Baek-Yeob, tells the story of two kids who are, perhaps, 12? (girl) and 5 (boy). W/ their mother dead, they roam about on the lie of the big sister that they're searching for her. As the boy was too young at the time of the mother's passing to remember her or the tragic events, the girl can't bring herself to spill the truth. Thus, they live as vagabonds until they come by the way of two monks on their way home. They take the children in, and what follows is one of the most gruelling emotional experiences since GRAVE OF THE FIREFLIES.

THEM Anime Reviews' listed this synopsis:

Based on a fairy tale by by Korean writer Jeong Chae-bong, this is a tale about orphan boy Gilson and his blind sister Gami, who are taken care of by Buddhist monks at a temple. The drama unfolds as Gilson follows a monk up to a mountainside temple to learn more about the soul's eye, so he can teach it to his sister so that she can see the world again with her own eyes.

Now, THAT really broke my heart. Poor child wants to learn how to see w/out eyes to teach his blind sister! How fabulous - and eviscerating - is that?! I was a mess this whole film.

The music is divine. It tugs at all the right heart strings in all the right places. It's funny at times, unbearably sad at others, melancholy & bittersweet yet playful. It's real, is what it is. Real, authentic, engaging... this is quality storytelling.

The animation! Oh my! This is one beautiful piece of work. REALLY beautiful. It's so crisp, w/ clever camera angles and well-done character design. Colour is a major part of the story, so colour is accentuated in all the right places. The editing is perfect, too.

The V.A.'s (voice actors) are miracles to behold. Now, I'm REALLY no expert at Korean, but the emotion in these voices sting the heart. I gripped a gin & tonic in one hand, my stomach or chest in the other the entire runtime - which is ANOTHER plus for this picture...


This is excellent filmmaking! In 77 minutes, it says more than a tower of 2-hour American films, stacked into the clouds. I felt this same kind of elation w/ F*CKING AMAL (SHOW ME LOVE, from Swedish director Lukas Moodysson), which clocked in at about 79 minutes. These are simple stories str8 from the balls - and they never faulter. No need for filler or gimmick or "coolness" -It's all real, all authentic, all heart-rending.

The original song that closes this picture is divine. It's so gorgeous, a K-Pop duet w/ So-eun Lee & Do-hyun Yoo, who spare nothing to belt a truely affecting, heart-breaking tune. My 2nd favourite of the year to ROTK's INTO THE WEST... -Can anyone tell me what the name of it is?

**** of **** stars, thumbs up, this one helps fill out my yearly top ten, and suffice it to say, is one of the finest Anime titles I've ever seen, and one of the best films ever made!

However, I will say that I don't think this is as good or devastating as GRAVE OF THE FIREFLIES. While I was a $u<K3r for OSEAM, crying like a baby, it felt as if the emotional drain was firmly intended, like we're setup as an audience in many scenes to turn weepy. It wasn't as subtle as GRAVE OF THE FIREFLIES, which really didn't have to try to make us cry, we just can't help ourselves.

Reguardless, a very fine film.

THEM Anime Reviews 4.0 - Oseam

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