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Summer Wars
Summer Wars Blu-Ray DVD
Summer Wars
Anime DVD Review

I have seen the future and it is Summer Wars. A powerful, mind-blowing film, this film is both a richly detailed, touching story full of enjoyment and also a stern warning; that we depend too much on the interlinked technologies that we have developed. As Facebook brings us all together, it only takes one mistake to rip it all apart and send the world into chaos.

Kenji is a math genius, but your typical loser. He has a dull job doing maintenance for OZ, an online world that is a sort of combination Nintendo Online, Facebook and Second Life, and it would make them all envious. Everything is tied into it.

Summer WarsWhen a girl he secretly desires, Natsuki, asks him to masquerade as her fiancee for a family reunion, he's pushed into a situation that he's uncomfortable with, but things take a turn for the worse when he solves a cryptic math puzzle sent to his cell phone and unwittingly assists a rouge Artificial Intelligence program that then takes over his avatar and hacks OZ.

While he's taking the heat for turning the world upside down, he and his new-found "family" have to set things right both in the real world and online. Fortunately, the family, with a powerful matriarch, have connections. But, only after Kenji and Natsuki both use their abilities are they able defeat the "cyberterrorist" AI, by playing on its weakness; it likes to play games. Of course, King Kazma helps too.

Summer WarsDirected by Mamoru Hosada (who's previous work includes the incredible "Girl Who Lept Through Time"), he combines every little detail and nuance perfectly, from capturing Natsuki's eccentric family to a wonderful baseball analogy during the third act. Don't miss it, this marvelous film will delight everyone from 3.14 to 666. End of Line.

Reviewed by Brian Cirulnick, March 2011

Below: Scenes from Summer Wars.

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Summer Wars Website Links:


Summer Wars official Japanese website (Japanese)

Summer Wars official website from Funimation

GKIDS' page for North American theatrical release

Summer Wars (movie) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia

Summer Wars at the Internet Movie Database

Summer Wars entry at Wikipedia

Summer Wars trailer on YouTube


Below: Posters and promotional artwork from Summer Wars.

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