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4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9 out of 5 stars
Format: Blu-ray|Change
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on April 2, 2012
I could go on and on about how great Summer Wars is, but I'll try to get straight to the point.

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.
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on April 7, 2011
Summer Wars is as perfect as anime gets and is by far superior to any film I saw out of Hollywood last year. This is a family film about a family overcoming personal conflicts through saving the world when virtual reality begins to take over our reality. Both a social critique and a technological cautionary tale, Summer Wars is the cream of the anime crop. Funny, terrifying, and edge-of-your-seat exciting, Summer Wars delivers on all emotional fronts.
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on February 28, 2011
Being a HUGE anime fan, I must say that with most quality anime being a series and so few full length feature films, that I was really looking forward to seeing this. Given the latter plus the movies plot line and art style, my expectations for this movie were set pretty high. Usually when that happens, I end up majorly disappointed but I am very happy to say that that didnt happen this time because THIS MOVIE FREAKING ROCKED!!!!!

It had everything in it, action, romance, comedy and drama, plus it covered so many issues. There is so much going on that you would think that the movie would lose control but some how it strikes this fine balance that just makes everything work. Whether you are an anime fan or not, I would say that this movie will leave every viewer, no matter who is watching it, entertained and with something they can relate to.

At $20, this movie is a steal and you'll definitely get your moneys worth as you'll be watching again, again and again.
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on December 24, 2011
Excellent Movie,

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
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Summer Wars is another of those delightful little family movies that nobody has ever heard of. So it's nice to see it re-released here so that hopefully more people will get to see this wonderful little creation.

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. Lot's of action, yes but more importantly that wonderful quiet feel with characters that you really love. So I highly recommend it.

One of the best animated movies to come out of Japan in the last few years. 4-1/2 stars out of five!

J. A.
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If Hayao Miyazaki made a cyberthriller, the result might be something like "Summer Wars." This colorful little anime movie spends most of its run straddling the line between a family reunion comedy and a world war entirely on the web. And the results manage to stir your heart and make you laugh at the same time.

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, 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. So we get a wild, crazy guerilla cyberwarefare (involving a boat, a giant computer, an army truck and lots of ice!) as the family (plus Kenji) unites to battle Love Machine. At the same time, the writer maintains the focus on the eccentric family, their grudges, and their unique personalities.

Plus, the animation for this movie is SPELLBINDING. The "real world" stuff is rendered in traditional hand-drawn anime, but the scenes set in OZ are brilliant, surreal, colorful and dreamlike. Whole civilizations on shelves, crowned whales, floating islands, stacked sports stadia, and endless chambers filled with strange little creatures.

And all the characters are very well-fleshed-out. Kenji is a nice, rather socially inept guy with epic math skills, and Natsuki is a strong young girl who finds herself with the weight of the ENTIRE PLANET on her shoulders. The entire cast is well-developed -- from the stately grandmother to the idiot cousin who doesn't know what's going on -- but one of the best is Kazuma, a 13-year-old kung-fu expert/computer nerd.

"Summer Wars" may start small, but it quickly grows to the epic size of the World Wide Web itself. Even better: it's funny, heartwarming and all-around engrossing.
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on March 19, 2011
I purchased this without really knowing to much about it except for that fact its from the same studio that brought out "the girl who leapt through time" after watching it however I was quite happy with my purchase, the animation quality on the movie is fantasic, all the fight scenes within the "OZ" computer program look really slick. best way to describe this movie would be if you took the charm from the girl of leapt through time and mixed it in with the digimon movie. overall this is a must buy for fans of anime.
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on March 18, 2011
I'm a huge fan of anime and this movie doesn't disappoint. Some of the best animation i have seen in a few years. While I am not a huge fan of English dubbing, this movie actually has some of the best dubbing in an anime and it should be watched in Japanese too. The story is top notch with great humor and dialogue.

If you ever have been turned off by anime, this movie should bring you back to loving it. If you want a good introduction to anime, then look no further!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon April 26, 2011
With two parallel adventures going on, this story is very captivating and creatively done. I won't spoil it for anyone by giving away too much. It involves a family reunion and the world they live in bases all commerce through the internet, and without that chaos ensues. Someone has to save the commercial world in order to save the real one.

Very interesting, especially for its parallels between their situation and our own. :)
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on May 8, 2012
I was surprised by Summer Wars. It was recommended to me by a few people who had enjoyed it, but I don't think I expected it to be as good as it turned out to be! Colourful, unique, and very enjoyable. Highly recommended to any sci-fi anime fan looking for a believable, clever and entertaining watch.
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