My Top 10 Favourite Anime Openings & Endings

Hey guys, today I’m doing a long overdue post on my favourite openings and endings in the anime world. Honestly it was SO HARD picking ten for the list because there are so many amazing songs out there.

10) Angel Beats Opening – My Soul Your Beats (LiA)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (3)“I felt like I heard it because I felt like I sensed it. Just now, in my heart that’s begun to tremble…”

Angel Beats starts off the list. I have never ever missed an opening of Angel Beats for the entirety of the series nor the second time I rewatched the series to review. I love the concept of Kanade’s name and Tenshi title alluding to the beats of the song. The song goes splendidly with the themes in the story and bring back the feels of the finale. My Soul Your Beats is on almost every top anime song playlist out there and it wouldn’t be an anime playlist without it.

9) Luminous – Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie Opening (ClariS)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (4)“The things I would dream of when I was young are still far away, but when you’re here I feel I’m a little stronger…”

When I first heard Luminous in the theatres I was almost jumping out of my seat because it is just so amazing. It encompasses both the emotions of the story and the thrill and excitement of magical girls. ClariS is disbanding right now because one of the members are taking time off to pursue her studies. I am going to miss Clara and Alice so much! It was really hard to pick one ClariS song on my list this would definitely be the one for me.

8) Hoshizora no Watlz – Kimi ga Nozomu Eien Ending (Kuribayashi Minami)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (12)“There is only one dream I see in the night sky. I want to become your star someday…”

To be honest I have only ever seen one episode of the series and it’s outside my usual genre because the series has a lot of bishoujo drama and tragedy for guys because it is based on a romance visual novel. However, the ending song is absolutely beautiful and I stumbled upon it many years ago when I was still a light anime fan. Now even when new seasons generate new openings and endings, Hoshizora no Waltz remains one of my all time favourites.

7) Sekai de Ichiban Koi Shiteru – Sekaiichi Hatsukoi Opening 1 (Shuuhei Kita)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (9)“I’m in love with you, the greatest person in the world. At the tick of every second, I like you more and more…”

Okay so maybe this one’s a really personal pick because it’s my favourite yaoi series opening but it is just SO CATCHY and it does a great job introducing the story and its characters. It goes through each of the main couples and supporting characters as the scenes pan from one office to the other. The song was written to go hand-in-hand with the premise of the series story. Also, there are so many sparkles, flowers, hearts, bunnies and flower petals in this opening, it’s the ultimate shojo fluff opening and the series is definitely one of my guilty pleasure songs.

6) Bokura wa Ima no Naka de – Love Live Opening 1 (Muse)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (5)“If we try our hardest, with all those things we love, we’ll reach a new goal. If we’re able to believe in all those things we love, we’ll move forward on this heart-throbbing path!”

Let all your idol dreams come true in this opening. I fell in love with it when I watched Love Live. I learned all the lyrics, I’ve seen the voice actresses perform the song live and I have learned all t he dance moves to go with it. I love how it brings out all the feelings and insecurities and confidence of the idols and it’s just a really fun and upbeat song to listen to when you need to give yourself a positive boost.

5) Starlog – Fate Kaleid Liner Prisma Illya Opening (Choucho)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (6)“The star brightens up the darkness and night of the changing world. It’s telling me to fly into the guiding sky… For the promises we exchanged that day. I believe.”

This song is probably the newest and most recent on one the list. It came out with the new Fate series depicting Illyasviel von Einzbern as a magic girl. I loved the driving beats of the song and ChouCho’s vocals are just perfect along with the dreamy atmosphere of the song. The lyrics speak of the courage it takes to become a magical girl and paints a really vivid starry sky in your mind.

4) Uta no Prince-sama 1000% Ending – Maji Love 1000% (STARISH)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (10)“DOKI DOKI de kowaresou 1000%* LOVE HEY!!)

Uwaaaaaaa It would not be a favourites list with something by STARISH – the seiyuu singing group formed from the Uta no Prince-sama otome games and anime. The band is named STARISH after taking the first character of either first or last name from each of the characters. Syo, Tokiya, Aijima, Ren, Ittoki, Shinomiya and Hijirikawa all voiced by a group of wonderfully talented seiyuus. Mamoru Miyano among them is my favourite. Maji Love 1000% is STARISH’s debut song and every UtaPri fan who knows it knows it’s the ultimate UtaPri song.

3) Gundam Seed Destiny Opening 2 – Pride (Sung by High & Mighty)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (1)“The fleetingly scattered light wakes us up now. The sadness makes a sound and disappears from that place…”

This was the very first Gundam opening and song I ever watched and listened to. I love how the slow scenes introduce all the different couples and main characters before throwing us into the main mecha action. This is mainly one of my Gundam favourites because the lyrics are so poetic and really reflect a lot of the characters’ internal emotional and mental struggles as they contemplate the true meanings of war, power and true peace throughout the story.

2) Fate/Zero Ending 2 – Sora wa Takaku Kaze wo Utau (Haruna Luna)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (7)“Why is the sky so blue like it does not know any sadness? It keeps crumbling towards tomorrow without hesitation…”

Fate/Zero is one of my favourite anime series out there. I absolutely loved it and it was ten times better than the original Fate/Stay Night. I love the lyrics and the chord progression of the song because it perfectly goes with the atmosphere of the story and sentiment of the characters. Haruna Luna has a really clear and strong voice to bring out the emotion behind the lyrics and it’s all accompanied with a collection of visuals featuring Kiritsugu Emiya and Irisviel.

1) Clannad~After Story Opening – Toki wo Kizamu Uta (LiA)

Top 10 OPs and EDs (2)“You were the one… You were the one who I loved. My eyes start to water from the wind and you become a distant figure…”

One of the best openings in anime in in my opinion. When I heard this in the first episode of After Story, it was like taking a breath of fresh air back in the anime world I loved so much. The opening is a rush of bright lights and as the scenes pan through the city and introduce the different characters, you just get the feeling that there is something magical about Clannad. The opening of After Story is SO nostalgic and you get feels just from watching it.

Honourable Mention (technically #11)

Uta no Prince-Sama 1000% Opening – Orpheus (Mamoru Miyano)  [I couldn’t fit ten in the end and it ended up being eleven so this is sort of my way of cheating around the top 10 list… what? there are too many good songs to choose from >.< the list actually started off as a top 5 list and top 5 was even harder.]

Top 10 OPs and EDs (8)“Sing your song. Even when we’re apart we can understand. “Hear my wind. There is only one sky that connects us two…”

Orpheus is a really beautiful and powerful song about music and love. It’s sung by my all-time favourite singer and seiyuu Mamoru Miyano. If you’ve ever seen Mamo perform the song on stage, he is absolutely phenomenal with it. There’s something really mysterious and poetic about the lyrics that I can’t really explain. It’s one of those songs that keep growing on you the more you listen to it.

So there you have it, my top 10 favourite openings and endings. I know I left out a bunch of really great songs in general. Here’s an extra list of other openings and endings I really love.

Shingeki no Kyojin Opening 1 – Guren no Yumiya (Linked Horizon)

– Shingeki no Kyojin Ending – Utsukushiki Zankoku na Sekai (Yoko HIkasa)

No Game No Life Opening 1 – This Game (Konomia Suzuki)

Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei – Rising Hope (LiSA)

Brothers Conflict – 14 to 1 (Asahina Brothers)

Karneval Opening – Henai no Rondo (GRANRODEO)

Kyoukai no Kanata Ending – Daisy (Stereo Drive Foundation)

I hope you guys found something interesting to listen to from this post and I hope you enjoyed reading it cause I had a lot of fun writing it. Let me know what your favourites are in the comments or link me to your video or post on your blog, I’m always looking for new music to listen to! ^_^

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

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April Mini Box Haul + Youtube Video

Hey guys, today I wanted to do another mini anime haul that basically featured mini figures or just little accessories. I’m trying to figure out a name for this haul so leave a suggestion in the comments if you think of something. This haul features merchandise from four different animes and two Vocaloid merchandise collection series. This post actually goes with video on my channel at youtube here and the pictures are for reference because the products are so small, it was really hard to get a clear look at them.

Yes, I am also on Youtube now. It’s a bit nerve wracking for me because I’m usually sitting behind the screen and behind the camera, not in front. Thank you guys for dropping in every once in a while and for your support.

Nendoroid Petit Character Vocal Series 01 Hatsune Miku

 

Puella Magi Madoka Magica Soul Gem Cell phone Strap

K Project Rubber Cell Phone Strap

Sword Art Online Mini Character Keychain: Silica

Hatsune Miku X Shumai-Kun Collection

Free! Character Collection: Rin Matsuoka

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Cloudy’s Top 5 Strongest Female Heroines

“Well-behaved women seldom make history.” – Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

Hello everyone, I’m a little behind on world events since I’ve been caught up in my blog bubble and my schoolwork all last week and all weekend but I really wanted to a write a post to honour International Women’s Day last Saturday. I’ve been brainstorming me these for a while now and these are just my top 5 strongest female characters…

WARNING – SOME SPOILERS BELOW!!

Fuuko Ibuki

“This uncute appearance…I didn’t want you of all people to see me in such a state. But…this time I will protect you!” – Lizzy

5) Lizzy from Black Butler- At first Elizabeth Midford doesn’t seem like anything past your noble lady and I really hate how she was portrayed in the anime as a two-dimensional ditz. In truth, as seen in the manga, Elizabeth is actually very capable and talented especially in fencing and she will not hesitate to use those skills when it comes to protecting the one she loves. She is 150% devoted to her fiancé, Ciel Phantomhive despite his somewhat standoffish and workaholic ways and she strives to become his firmest pillar of support in life. Even though she and Ciel are really only teenagers, Elizabeth already has an internal grasp on the aristocratic and political burdens of her marriage to Ciel but she is willing to shoulder his burdens out of love all the while looking as cute as she can in her best dress.

“Of what worth is a king who fails to protect the powerless?

Saber

4) Saber from Fate/Stay Night and Fate/Zero- Who would have guessed that legend of legends, the King of Camelot and all of Britain, was actually a girl? Saber makes the list because of chivalrous code of honour, selflessness to take on the burdens of others and her utter devotion to her kingdom. As the strongest Class of fighters in the Holy Grail War, she’s usually a lone wolf but she grows much as a character when she learns to cherish the bonds of love and friendship with her Master and other participants of the war that she may encounter. Saber is stubborn when it comes to her ideals and will stick by them even when others condemn or mock her for them. Her selflessness allows her to empathize with the weak while her pride as a king reminds her of her duty to Britain. She is truly one of the noblest kings.

“I dream of the day when I can see your dear smile again.” – Homura

3) Homura Akemi from Puella Magi Madoka Magica- Homura is one of the most complex characters I have ever encountered in the anime world. In the very first timeline, she is meek and shy, but by meeting Madoka, she begins to understand the meaning of friendship and selflessness. Seeing Madoka become a magic girl to save the world in the first timeline, Homura also becomes a magic girl to protect Madoka. Homura’s powers to pause, rewind and manipulate time stems from her wish to turn back time to save Madoka from a magic girl’s grim end. She repeats the time loop over and over again, hundreds of times in order to find a way to save Madoka. She becomes obsessed with Madoka enough to discard her life as a human and a magic girl to become the antagonistic force to God Madoka in hopes that she will one day meet Madoka again on even plains. She represents the best and worst in human beings – do we do things out of selflessness or selfishness? Homura’s emotions towards Madoka have become so complex that she herself probably does not even understand the extent of them, making her an intriguing character overall.

“This world is very cruel… but it is also very beautiful.” – Mikasa

2) Mikasa Ackerman from Shingeki no Kyojin- Mikasa lost her family to bandits when she was a child, on the verge of death, she was inspired by Eren to stand up and fight and to win. She’s immensely attached to Eren and her love for her extends so far as to follow him right into the military where she becomes one of mankind’s most powerful and talented soldiers against the wrath of the Titans. Mikasa’s shining moment comes when she believes that Eren has already died and she’s ready to give up her life, but her memories with Eren inspire her to continue living in his remembrance. Even when Eren is persecuted by the military for being a traitor to the titans, Mikasa is ready to give up her life to fight for his. Mikasa reaches third place in my list because she exemplifies mankind’s strength and also its fragility.

“There is no future for those who have died… and what of those who did the killing? Is happiness to be found in a future that is grasped with blood-stained hands? Is that the truth?” – Lacus

Lacus Clyne (1)

1) Lacus Clyne from Gundam Seed and Gundam Seed Destiny- No one finishes Gundam Seed and Gundam Seed Destiny without falling for Lacus’ charms at least once… or twice. Lacus is a songstress and symbol of peace during the Cosmic Era where different factions are constantly at war with one another through the use of mecha mobile suits. Despite having grown up sheltered in this war torn era, she is fully aware of the political tensions between PLANT, ORB and Earth. She emerges as a pacifist who works towards a peaceful co-existence between the Naturals (who are regular humans) and the Coordinators (a more evolved species of human able to pilot the Gundam). Although Lacus does not enter the battlefield personally per se, she is forever a support to her friends and even treats her enemies with kindness. She initiates a stalemate in the war and coordinates much of the postwar discussion to establish a stable peace among the different peoples.

“Shall I take you away, to the place where dreams come true…” – Nagisa

Nagisa Furukawa

*Honorary Mention goes out to Nagisa Furukawa from Clannad and Clannad after Story- Although Nagisa does not go through any death defying, humanity-testing quests of strength or skill, she is still an admirable character in her world. Having been born sickly and physically weak, Nagisa has been forced to repeat a year in her high school. Still, she is neither bitter nor resentful of her lot in life but faces her studies with a determination to make the best memories during her time at the school. She becomes an inspiration and source of hope to Okazaki Tomoya who has been jaded by his family situation. In After Story, Nagisa displays an overwhelming amount of bravery and resolve to bring Ushio into the world despite the very imminent possibility of death due to the strain of child birth.

Well, there you have it. My top 5 strongest female heroines. I hope you guys liked this post and like I said at the beginning, these are just my personal picks. If you have your own favourite kickass heroine you would like to share, comment below because I would love to read about her. It is always so hard to narrow down a top 5 of ANYTHING so I hope you guys enjoyed reading this!

“Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.” – Nora Ephron

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Nendoroid Petite Mami and Homura Photography

Hey guys, HAPPY NEW YEAR and for the first day of January 2014, I wanted to share with you some figure photography. Here is Mami Tomoe and Homura Akemi from the Nendoroid Petite Puella Magi Madoka Magica Box Set. I bought these two figures while on vacation and I spent quite a bit of time trying to guess my way into my favourite figures or at least two that weren’t identical. This collection is pretty much sold out now so I’m glad I picked up two when I got the chance.

Here is the full set, photo courtesy of the Good Smile Company online site here.

Here are some New Year’s evening themed photography done with Christmas lights (and sparkles). I just wanted to glam up these magic girls for the holiday. I picked up some decorations on sale after Boxing Day and everything was actually set up at home on top of a box and in front of a white wall so I really focused a lot on setting up in order to blow up the white lighting in order to set a snowy bright wash over the scene

Again, taken with my Sigma 17-70mm on my Nikon D3100 😉

DSC_0165c

I hope you guys enjoyed this photos. They were just taken yesterday a few hours before the new year so they’re hot off the SD card 😉 I also wish you all a wonderful rest of holidays and safe winter with your family and friends. Cheers to a great new year!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

 

Cloudy Floats over to Facebook…

Hey guys! Just wanted to let you all know that littlecloudcuriosity.com officially has a Facebook Page! *cue cheers*yayyyyyyyy~ The reason I decided to start one of these pages is because it’ll be easier posting quickie updates or news instead of waiting for a lot of news to accumulate into a big Cloudy Says post. So if you want to stay super super informed on what’s going on in the LCC World, hit that like button >3<

Here’s some latest recent posts for those of you who might have missed them…

– Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III Rebellion Part 1 Review

– Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III Rebellion Part 2 Review

– Alice in the Country of Hearts, Mad Hatter’s Late Night Tea Party Volume 1 Manga Review

– Kyoukai no Kanata Episode 10 Review

– Kill La Kill Episode 8-9 Rant

Love Logo_Text_Cropped

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion Part 2 FINALE Review

Mahou.Shoujo.Madoka☆Magica.full.1573386Hey guys and welcome to Part 2 of the Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion review (wow that’s a mouthful). If you randomly stumbled upon part 2 and you’re looking for an overview and review of the plot, click here. Part 2 will look at Characters, Music and my final thoughts on the film series. Now without further ado, let’s get started…

Characters

Like all magical series, the story intensely revolves around the lives of a certain group of girls whose lives and destinies are intertwined by magic, and in this case, that magic involves a contract. In many magical girl series and, there are more or less two routes the character development can take. The first is intense development with one or two of magic girl characters and she’s usually the leader of the group. The second is shallow character stories due to the short amount of time and focus divided to giving each magic girl her back story and air time. Somehow, Madoka Magic has both, but leans more to the first route of character development. Even though the story (and fandom) is greatly devoted to Madoka and Homura’s close friendships, their trials and tribulations, we obviously don’t see as much of the other magic girls. They’re either dead in some timelines or they’re just not significant to the main conflict in the story’s main timeline. Still, you can’t help but love Mami’s stern but loving leaderly qualities or Kyoko’s hardass personality; even Sayaka’s character is wonderfully reconciled in this movie. Overall, the characters are properly constructed and mature accordingly to how the story progresses. No cop outs.

Madoka Kaname (3.5/5)- From start to finish, I’ve always felt that even though the series is named after Madoka and despite her main role in the creation of the Law of the Cycle, she serves as more of a symbol of hope and figurehead of goodness. You can easily like her, but perhaps not grow to love her as much as one of the tortured characters that you come to love after a ride on their emotional journey.

Homura Akemi (5/5)- Part 3 really focuses on how Homura copes with the world after her closest and dearest friend leaves her. She even wonders if she had hallucinated this girl named Madoka because no one else remembers anyone named Madoka Kaname; she neither exist in the past, the present nor the future. I’ve grown to really love the character that Homura’s become in Part 3. She’s no longer a crybaby and like how Sayaka said she felt the tough and strong Homura was truer to Homura’s personality, I agree with that as well. Homura’s risen into the list of my favourite anime characters because of the realistic three-dimensionality of her personality that brings out the best of humans – self-sacrifice, unconditional love, perseverance and in this movie, the worst – selfishness, hopelessness and despair. She embodies all of these things and more making her truly one of the most enjoyable characters on screen.

Sayaka Miki (4/5)- We see a lot more of Sayaka, a side of her much more mature and level-headed versus the depressing and somewhat annoying little girl we see in the first parts of the story. She becomes a key character in the show and her role is a defining feature of Madoka’s ways of the world. In contrast to the original story timeline where she’s the weakest of the group, she becomes one of the strongest characters of the show and in the most unique way possible thanks to God-doka. She even shocks Kyubey.

Mami Tomoe (4/5)- Though her death was a pivotal moment in the initial release of the show, she comes back in other timelines so she’s not at all sidelined in the story, especially not in Part 3. We’re shown just how powerful an experienced magic girl senpai can fight – and she’s pretty badass. Her role in the conclusion of the movie kept her pretty much in the same position in terms of being a side character of the main cast. She’s important in her own way and moves the plot deeper but her role finishes quick.

Kyoko Sakura (3.5/5)- I guess it’s because we saw so much of Kyoko in the original series that there’s not much else to talk about in Part 3. She’s actually the first one Homura approaches when they tackle the opening conflict of the movie’s plot. I don’t want to give too much away so you’ll just have to watch but she does contribute quite a bit to character development. For Sayaka X Kyoko fans, you’ll absolutely love the camaraderie that we see between the pair.

Nagisa Momoe (3/5)- Ah, our new character~ the wish she made was apparently formerly announced and we’re given subtle hinted at the details of her wish throughout the movie. She was originally the sweets witch that killed Mami in the original storyline and in this timeline she’s really a new cute girl to keep things fresh, really. If a giant fanbase explodes over Nagisa, I could see a mini side magic girl series being focused on her; how she became a magic girl, the specific details of her wish and how she descended into despair, maybe even her perspective as a witch when she’s fighting Mami.

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Score and Soundtrack

Rating: 4.5/5 curiously excited clouds Crop_45 CuriousClouds Transparent

 yukikajiuraIt’s Yuki Kajiura. Nuff said. The name itself already warrants a listen to the soundtrack. She adds a nice collection of sounds in the continuation of the series. It’s hard for me to draw out a full review of the music because you don’t usually pick up the instrumentals as you’re absorbed in the action, but that’s just how amazing the music is. The best score and soundtrack is one that elevates the storytelling to a mesmerizing state for the audience. The one key score piece that I did pick up on was the uniquely abstract and refreshing soundtrack that went with each girl’s full magical transformation scene. It just fits immensely well with the art style and atmosphere that the story evokes. This is not your regular magic girl anime, so it requires not so regular magic girl music.

Still the music is one of the most memorable part of your movie-going experience because some would argue that it’s the music that sticks with you the longest, after the action explosions have faded and the credits have run out.  Though I can’t point out the melody, I can still remember the way I felt when I heard the soundtracks. Another key moment of orchestral brilliance are the moments when Homura prepares to die as a witch. Delicate and tragic yet so chaotic and destructive, reflecting turmoil of emotions that Homura feels when her soul descends into the abyss. I love Yuki Kajiura’s work and I can’t wait to have a listen of the full OST when it gets released.

cover…And now on a slightly more positive note. Since ClariS has been singing the opening songs in the Madoka series so far, I did expect a new ClariS song from them and I wasn’t disappointed. The new opening was aesthetically pleasing in the most artistic way possible which really compliments the hopeful and magical sounds of the opening song, “Colorful.” If you listen carefully, you can hear violin sounds in the track. I have it on repeat and it’s just so addicting.

Click below for a listen or the link to download the song!

http://www.mediafire.com/download/dotqqmd6kg63nco/Puella+Magi+Madoka+Magica+Movie+III+Opening+-+ClariS+-+Colorful+%28littlecloudcuriosity.com%29.mp3

Mahou.Shoujo.Madoka☆Magica.full.1319098Contribution to Genre

The fact that Part 3 of the film series is called “Rebellion,” tells you a lot about what’s happening in the story. Of course in the magic girl series you generally expect pretty dresses, flashy powers and cute girls. This has all of that – and So. Much. More. The story never lets us forget that its written by Urobutcher. Madoka Magica gives us a reality slap check when it comes to critiquing and reviewing magic girl series – it totally destroys our presumptions that twelve and older magic girls can go to school by day and fight evil by night and still function cheerily with less than three hours of sleep every night. AND NO DARK CIRCLES! Must be great to be a magic girl right? Not in this world. This series takes everything you ever thought you knew or wanted in a magic girl series, reconstructs and reinvents part of the genre for more mature audiences who have enough of their share of cutesy pointless magic girl clichés and want substance in the plot, all the while keeping the traditional elements of the magic girl genre true to its core.

Whether you love fantasy or action, drama or just a hell of a good anime no matter what the genre, you should watch Madoka Magica. It’s one of those anime defining series that proves to anime-haters or non-anime watchers just. how. good. anime can get.

Final Thoughts? (in no particular order)

– I need the God-doka Magica Nendoroid like now

– Gonna go and read Magical Girl Kazumi and Oriko

– Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion places the series on my list of absolute favourite animes that everyone should watch

– Don’t show Puella Magi Madoka Magica to your magic girl loving cousins or you might ruin their magic girl dreams and they’ll start telling you that there’s a Kyubey under the bed instead of a Bogeyman. Of course, because even the Bogeyman’s afraid of that creepy thing.

Anyway, we’ve now reached the end of our review and now that we have reached the end, I wanted to show you guys some cool freebie character cards that were up for grabs in the theatre. I could only find the three most common character cards so if you have a Sayaka X Kyoko or Mami  card, I’m super jealous of you!! There were some really great bonuses that scores  up some big points on the score for overall movie-going experience.

I hope you guys liked this thorough two-part review on the finale of the Madoka Magica film series. If you liked this don’t forget to share it with friends or follow me for new stuff coming almost every day. Thank you guys very very much for dropping by and reading. Let me know what you guys thought of the series? Whether or not you liked Homura’s ending and if you think there will be a magic girl anime that could EVER TOP Madoka Magica.

I will talk to you guys soon!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion Part 1 Review

Magica Madoka NA Poster“Even though I’m lonely, even though I’m sad, no one else can understand how I feel…” – Homura

After seeing this movie, I sincerely believe that Madoka Magica is going to be an enduring series for the rest of anime history. It’s left its mark. Seriously. And it’s one of those series that older magic girl lovers and anime fans are going to cosplay at conventions year after year after year. When people ask you, “What’s the best magic girl anime out there?” you say, “Madoka Magica, without a doubt.”

I had the pleasure of seeing both first parts of the movie in theatres when I was just starting this blog and this year, I’m once again stunned by how amazing Gen Urobushi’s story planning is and how awe-inspiring and outright smack you in the face gorgeous the animation touch-ups are. Major major props goes out to the character design, animation and art direction team.

In a review for a film of such magnitude, I’m going to be breaking it down in four broad categories – Storytelling and Script, Characters, Score and Soundtrack, Contribution to its Genres and lastly, Final Thoughts.

Storytelling and Script

Most of you might know that the original Madoka Magica series consists of twelve episodes, all released within a regular season of anime. When the movie was released, fans all over the world wondered if there would be extra added features that may explain certain aspects of the inner-workings of the world that were left out in the short original series. While Part 1: Beginnings left us at a sort of suspenseful part where the Sayuka and Kyoko action is building to its peak, Part 2: The Eternal Story, which resolved the original story, followed the anime’s plotline shot for shot, perhaps omitting certain details and throwing in a few action scenes. All in all, it was the handful of preview shots after the credit roll of Part 2 that had us on the edge of our seats for more answers. For me and my friends, we launched into a forty minute discussion on Kyubey and the concept of magic girls on the bus all the way back home though there technically weren’t any right answers.

For Madoka Magica being the first anime film I have ever seen in North American theatres, it certainly made my first experiences a memorable one. There were considerably more people in the theatre for Part 3: Rebellion – part of them were recognizable from the previous screenings while many were mostly likely attending to find out what happens AFTER episode 12. AFTER the “happy” ending with the salvation of magic girls, the conception of God-doka and Homura’s journey in the world as a magic girl AFTER the world is rewritten. Because of course, there’s no way Urobutcher could ever leave us with a happy endings with and rainbows and sparkly pink-haired magical gods. No… there must be more… because the incubators are still around, and you just know that creepy white kitty thing is just lurking somewhere waiting to make a magical contract with you.

The screening actually begins with a word from the main cast of Madoka Magica – Aoi Yuki (the voice of Madoka), Chiwa Saito (the voice of Homura), Eri Kitamura (the voice of Sayaka), Kaori Mizuhashi (the voice of Mami), Ai Nonaka (the voice of Kyoko), Emiri Kato (the voice of Kyubey) and Kana Asumi (the voice of Nagisa Mome – a new character of the show).

PLOT RANT SPOILERS~~ SCROLL QUICK IF YOU WANT TO SKIP!

Magica Madoka picks up in a reset world, or so you think. In Mitakihara City, Madoka Kaname, Mami Tomoe, Kyoko Sakura and Sayaka Miki with their old friend Kyubey – who incidentally only says “Kyu-Kyu” like Pokemon at the start of the film, welcome a new transfer student and fellow magic girl named Homura Akemi. Oh and by the way, did I mention that Charlotte, the sweets witch actually becomes Mami’s chibi creature sidekick nicknamed Bebe? Yeah, she’s the white-haired loli in the poster.

So at the start of the series, you might think that everything’s a reset, in a world where no one dies as a result of their wishes. Things are pretty good for the girls, they’re working together as a team to fight evil things called “Nightmares” and it seems like everything is as it should be in this classic magic girl world. But of course, something’s not normal and Homura is the first to notice this. She realizes, and after some investigation, realizes that this world, this version of Mitakihara City is not normal nor is it real. It’s a city created by a wish that was designed to keep this perfect idealized magic girl world. Now the question is, who is the creator of the world? And why?

It’s really Homura’s interactions with Madoka that prompt her to the answers she’s looking for. This initial plot conflict opener seems pretty big, but then it gets bigger. Homura pinpoints three problems of the perfect city ; the first is that certain magic girls should not even exist nor encounter Madoka, the second is that the sweets witch should not be an ally and the third is that Sayaka should not remember anything about Madoka, Homura is the only one who can ever remember.

As the story develops, Homura having been moved by Madoka’s kindness realizes the Madoka of this world is not a fake because for someone to create such a Madoka akin to the real one, it must be someone who knows Madoka well. Of course, the person who knows Madoka best is Homura. We discover that Homura is really a magic girl being experimented on by the incubators. At the end of Part 2, where Homura is explaining the aspects of the old world to Kyubey, the incubators start to become curious about the concept of “witches” in which they isolate a magic girl, enclosed from the “Law of the Cycle” that Madoka reworked into the universe in order to save the souls of magic girls, so that the incubators could learn about/recreate the “witches.” Even in this restructured world, the Kyubey have hypothesized that the transition from hope to despair that magic girls may make would generate enormous amounts of energy for their kind. What happened during the experiment was that Homura ended up reconstructing an entire city inside her mind and invited certain individuals to fill that city. After Kyubey’s explanation, Homura almost immediately guesses that the incubators are attempting to divulge the secrets of Madoka and control her.

In order to prevent the incubators from targeting Madoka, Homura decides to raise the witch’s curse on her own and attempt to commit suicide. At this point, Homura descends into her state as a witch and is prepared for her soul to be cursed for all eternity to suffer. At which point, Sayaka and Mami Nagisa reveal that they’re “secretaries” for Madoka, who have been sent to help the Madoka inside Homura’s world to realize her true memories. At which point, Homura is purified by the magic girls and everyone returns to the real world. The action gets pretty intense… but it’s not over… Things get messy, but Madoka’s ready to receive Homura into magic girl heaven (wherever that is, out there in the universe) because her Soul Gem’s run out and she’s going to die. You’d think that at this point, this when the story wraps up with a nice bow but Homura actually yanks Madoka down from her godliness, and detaches the person that is Madoka, from her godly half. Homura is able to do this because her Soul Gem’s descended into a level of despair worse and way past a regular curse, where she’s reached the pinnacle of human emotion which she calls love. They say there’s a fine line between love and hate and Homura really embodies this by the end of the film. Her Soul Gem transforms into something so different that she herself becomes a powerful demon with the powers equivalent to that of a god’s. She’s ripped a part of Madoka’s universe for her own and exists as evil in which she states twice after that when the world ends, when all the magic girl’s souls will be collected, the final battle will very likely be between her and  Madoka.

The greatest part of it is that Homura is powerful enough to take on the incubators. She abducts Kyubey to “help” her and returns the little creature, which can usually heal, respawn or regenerate and beats it into a PULP at the very end. Versus the many times that little magic girls look at Kyubey and think to themselves, “I really should have stayed away from this cat thing,” Kyubey’s got that same scared out of his mind look plastered on his tattered expression at the end. GO HOMURA!

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END OF PLOT SPOILERS~~ KEEP READING FOR THE REST OF THE REVIEW

More on Storytelling

The sort of ending that you’re given by Urobushi is the sort of ending that completely follows his style but of course, it’s never anything you can predict or expect. And it’s so dark and yet plausible in that world that you can’t help but blink for a moment away from all the other magic girl and regular anime series that finish with super sunshine conclusions. For someone who’s such a sucker for happy endings – as clichéd as they may be at times, this ending thoroughly satisfied everything that you want in a happy ending and yet you can argue that it wasn’t an entirely “happy” ending. If you watch the movie or you’re familiar with Urobushi’s work, you probably know what I mean.

Urobushi really shook things up, but it takes a really great director and team to bring the screenplay alive. Akiyuki Shinbo and Yukihiro Miyamoto do a spectacular job at drawing out the storytelling in a fairly easy to follow pace even as we’re caught up in all the character development and action. And there is action. And there are explosions. Not only is it packed full of magic girl action we’re dying to see, there a wickedly innovative magic girl transformations for each of our characters who form a Holy Quintet magic girl team.

I don’t cry for anime much. This film did it for me. It takes a lot for an anime to make me cry and there’s only been one other anime that moved me to tears in the history of my anime watching.

Storytelling Rating: 5/5 legendary clouds 55rainbowclouds

I hope you guys enjoyed Part 1 of the Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion review. Stay tuned if you wanna see the review on characters, the genre, my final thoughts and a little surprise at the end!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Madoka Magica Movie Part III Review Update

250px-MadokarebellionHey guys! So… I just saw Part III of Madoka Magica and it was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING *goes into fangirl mode– takes a moment*

Okay, so here’s how it’s gonna go down. I started writing the review for this film anddddd it ended up being realllllyyyyyy long so it’s going to be posted in two parts. Part 1 will encompass a general itnroduction, storytelling review and there’s going to be a large section of the post devoted to a rant on an actual summary of the movie events (or at least, what I remember). I really tried to pay extra attention to the sequence of events and how they unfolded. Part 2 of the review will talk about a few smaller sections consisting of mini character reviews, the series’ contribution to the genre, my final thoughts, personal enjoyment and special feature surprise at the end 😉

If you’re interested in the first two parts of the Madoka film series, check out the post here.

I am super excited to post the reviews and I hope you are too. If you want to stay on top of the news here at littlecloudcuriosity, leave your email in the follow box or follow me as a wordpress user. And even if you just stumbled upon my blog today, thank you so much for dropping in. You’re always welcome here!

For a general outline of what’s going on right now, check out the Latest News page above.

I have a huge exam a few days from now so I’ll try my best to post on time in the next few days! Thank you all so much for being here and I hope you like the upcoming reviews!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Cloudy Quickly Says…

Hihi, how are you all?

I know I haven’t really reviewed anything in the last two days and that’s because I have an exam tomorrow and one more to go before my Christmas holidays begin on the 16th. Till then, posting will be quite sporadic depending on how stressed or how mellow I feel in these next few days. As always, I like keeping you guys in the loop of my life (even though I know you have so many more important things going on in your lives).

I was actually pretty stressed earlier which is why I decided to write to you guys cause you know how much blogging relaxes me ❤

BIG NEWS FOR THIS WEEK -> After my next exam, tomorrow night I will be checking out Madoka Magica the Movie Part III so there will definitely be posting about that. I am so excited to see how the story will unfold and I can’t wait to review it. If you guys have been with me when I first started littlecloudcuriosity, you might know that my first review was on the first two parts of the movie series Part 1: Beginnings and Part 2: The Eternal Story.

Also, it’s almost Christmas… and that means many sales… and that means many bookstore giftcards from friends and family who have no idea what to get me which means new manga 😉 I know I always say there are more manga posts coming soon and I’m not just saying it! It’s actually true because I am such a huge manga collecting crazy fangirl and I am always looking for new stuff to read. As well, I recently put in two orders from amiami.com which is one of my favourite sites for otaku merch.

I have a feeling I’ll fall behind on some weekly anime reviews but I’ll try my best to keep those going while I drown in Russian history next week for my last exam OTL but totally tweet me if anything earth-shattering in the anime world happens. I am also trying to figure out what anime to watch during the holidays so comment below on what you think I should review during Christmas  and I’ll look into it =)

If you have exams, good luck to you too! がんばろう-Ganbarou!!

Thanks for reading and I’ll talk to you guys soon~

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– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Out of the Box: Puella Magi Madoka Magica X Sanrio

Hi everyone. Today I wanted to do another otaku merch feature today. If you guys have seen Puella Magi Madoka Magica, you’ll be familiar with the characters of these straps. The Madoka franchise collaborated with Sanrio’s Melody and Kuromi characters… and the result is these adorable cosplay character keychains! They’re just so cute! What do you guys think of Sanrio X Anime collabs?

Hope you guys liked this quickie post! Don’t forget to like, share and follow for new stuff coming every day!

– Cloudy

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