Video - Shonen Sarutobi Sasuke

Shonen Sarutobi Sasuke is Toei's second animation feature film from 1959, and followed on the heels of the great Hakujaden. This was the first movie in a widescreen format, and everything just looks spectacular. I've always loved the colors of the classic Toei films - rich saturations, warm tones, deep and varied. The Studio Ghibli movies, obviously, are a strong parallel, and after you've watched a few Toei movies you can really appreciate that.

This movie was brought to the West under the title, Magic Boy, and this is currently the only version I can find online anywhere. Fortunately, it's available on Youtube right now, in a German dub, but the picture quality looks terrific and it's a joy to watch. You might be shocked at the film's decidedly non-anime look; it's a very "Western"-looking movie, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn't. Surely, the young Toei animators are still learning their craft, still growing, still impressing.


J.R.D.S. said...

It also has one of the most "interesting" – as in difficult to accurately translate – of all the titles of classic Tôei features. "Boy Monkeyfriend Sasuke"? "Sasuke, the Boy Who Is Friends with Monkeys"? At least one of the problems is that "shônen" is, for most uses, equivalent to "boy" but refers more to age than gender, while "boy" specifies gender more than age.

J.R.D.S. said...

It's tobi (jump), not tomo (friend). My bad. Somehow I managed not to notice when the title was on the computer screen in front of me but while I was lying in bed, having just woken up this this morning, it was the first thing that occurred to me.

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