There’s something particularly rewarding about getting a hold that was ordered by your request. It’s new, unused, and once you’ve enjoyed and returned it, everyone else gets the opportunity as well. I’ve recently gotten two gems that certainly belong in the GRPL collection:
Probably my favorite Woody Allen movie, even though he plays a very minor role as a historical commentator. I’m not a big Sean Penn fan, but he plays the best eccentric guitarist in this film about jazz in the 1930′s. It has a great track of foot tappin’ jazz songs, including “this gypsy in France…” Django Reinhardt. It opened up a whole new world of music and sound for me.
This came to me only a week after I requested it! Neon Genesis Evangelion is probably one of the best anime series out there. Its got everything a young adolescent could hope for: robots, girls, and gore. But Evangelion works so well because of it’s characters. Director Anno Hideaki created the 26 episode series after recovering from clinical depression. The show’s self-loathing anti-hero, Shinji Ikari, struggles with acceptance, identity, and the meaning of existence. And while his life is threatened by the Angels that could cause the destruction of mankind, he questions what the “enemy” is for his own identity. So while the structure of the action is pretty basic (people piloting megabots that fight monsters), the character development and motive- as well as it’s religious themes- make it unique.
Evangelion 1.01 is a rebuild of the first 5 or 6 episodes into a slimmed down feature film structure, with enhanced animation and some new scenes. As an Eva otaku, I was slightly saddened by all the missing scenes I cherished so dearly, but still enjoyed it immensely. If you’ve seen Hayao Miyazaki’s work and wonder if there’s any other good anime out there, start with Evangelion.