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Kenji, the teenage hero of Summer Wars, is an alternate for the Japanese Math Olympics team, but math is the only thing he's good at. He works part-time doing maintenance for the global computer network Oz, so he jumps at the opportunity when his pretty classmate Natsuki offers him a job--until he discovers she wants him to pose as her fiancé at her grandmother's 90th birthday celebration. Kenji has his hands full coping with Natsuki's large, eccentric family, who constantly refer to their samurai ancestors as they squabble with each other. But when a malicious AI program known as The Love Machine attacks Oz, Kenji has to solve a series of complex mathematical puzzles to prevent the cyberterrorist from causing a disaster. Mamoru Hosoda captures the oppressive heat of the Japanese summer in the sequences involving Kenji and Natsuki; Oz is rendered in a brightly colored, hallucinatory style. Hosoda worked with Takashi Murakami on the "Superflat" project, and the avatars that populate Oz reflect its depraved cuteness. Summer Wars was a critical and box-office hit in Japan, and deserves a wide audience in America. Hosoda, who also made The Girl Who Leapt Through Time (2006), is clearly one of the most interesting directors working in Japan. (Suitable for ages 12 and older: brief nudity, cartoon violence) --Charles Solomon
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Summer Wars is awesome. The animation style is one of my favourites, and the movie hits a lot of the right beats. It's funny, it has action, it has drama, it's suspenseful, and it's emotional.
The biggest issue is that for anyone who's ever watched "Our War Game" (a Digimon movie) or saw the American version of The Digimon Movie (middle section), Summer Wars is all too familiar.
From "messing around" on computers, to a rogue virus/AI, to even the climactic finale, it's eerily the same. It could have just been one big coincidence, but considering it's the same director for both films, it's not. True Our War Game is just 40 mins where Summer Wars is a feature length film, but there are so many scenes that are similar that it takes away from a lot of the show-stopping moments because it doesn't feel new.
This doesn't mean that I didn't enjoy it. I still thought it was an amazing movie. It just lacked the wow factor. And I think a lot of fans who've seen either the Digimon Movie, or Our War Game will feel the same. If you haven't seen it, then enjoy!!! You're about to watch one of the best anime films I've seen in a long time. It's funny, heartfelt and loaded with action. In fact I'm jealous. Because even when I saw it for the first time, it didn't really feel like the first time.
At first it appears to be your typical action/comedy movie. Kenji, a young nerd who works part-time for the internet giant OZ (which in this movie appears to be a blend of Facebook, Google & Microsoft all rolled into one) gets hijacked by one of his fellow classmates into joining her for her Grandmother's 90th birthday celebration at the family compound not knowing that they all think he's her fiance! While back in the virtual world of OZ which controls virtually everything from banking to traffic signals; a super virus is waiting to pounce which could endanger them all!
If this were all there was to the movie; it would be a good movie but nothing more. However what really makes it so good is not the on-line crisis or even his trying to cope with this new family he knows nothing about; but the family itself. The little kids act just like little kids should. The wife's in the kitchen act just like wife's in the kitchen would. The moody teen is a moody teen and the matriarchal head of the family is a tough old lady who doesn't take crap from everybody while deep inside she is still the loving grandmother who loves her family even when they disappoint. And when the family is threatened and things happen bad and good; family will have to pull together to well......, save the world! It's a wonderful little movie!
This movie is about the closest I've seen come to a non Studio Ghibli type movie (you know stuff like Totoro, Ponyo or Arrietty). It has the same wonderful feel and quiet sensibilities.Read more ›
For those who have seen Spirited Away or Howl's Moving Castle or The girl who Leapt through time will LOVE this movie. AMAZING soundtrack and the paper of the dvd case comes out and has a mini poster of the back. We brought it to several of our friend's house to watch and they loved it as well. A definite keeper as it appeals to all ages and is suitable for younger children as well but having parents around is a good idea at the parts where love machine gets kinda creepy. This is one is a great feel good movie with unexpected plot twists and a heartwarming but interesting story line. HEAVILY RECOMMENDED :D
Math nerd Kenji is shocked when popular upperclassman Natsuki asks him to come to her family's country house for the weekend. Unfortunately, he's there under false pretenses -- not only is Natsuki claiming that he's her boyfriend, but that he's a wealthy college student at Tokyo U. Yeah, that is inevitably going to backfire.
But something far worse happens when OZ (a crazy hybrid of amazon.com, Facebook, fighting video games and... well, just about everything you can find on the WWW) is hacked -- and Kenji is the main suspect.
The truth is actually much more sinister -- a horrendous program called Love Machine is devouring OZ user avatars, and is using the computer connections to cause chaos all across the world. When tragedy strikes the family, Kenji inspires them to fight back against Love Machine. But can the family's plan stop the program before it has a chance to take revenge on them?
"Summer Wars" isn't really like any other movie I've ever seen -- it's part cyberthriller, part bittersweet family story, part crazy comedy, and part colorful anime. It starts off as a simple family dramedy, with Kenji getting thrown into Natsuki's eccentric family and dealing with all the baggage they bring with them. Plus, you know he's going to get busted.
But when Love Machine appears, the stakes are suddenly the technological safety of the ENTIRE WORLD.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Very good movie one of the best I've seen in a long time 😊 if you like Japanese anime don't miss this masterpiece.Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
Great Movie, Funny and witty. A Little copy of Digimon the first movie but it's the same director so what can you say.Published 10 months ago by Dylan Santos
A true masterpiece that covers everything and reminded people what is important in life.Published 11 months ago by Jacky
Wonderful choice of animation direction and loved the color and awesome variety of characters.Published 11 months ago by Peter De Forest
My daughter is so happy to get this movie. A good story as well. My daughter's interest in anime movies are really catching my attention with the story lines and animations.Published 14 months ago by Darren