Someone passed me this yesterday and I just watched the first disc. I was really intrigued by the epic when I first read the novelised version; now this, an anime version that commemorates the 40th Anniversary of diplomatic relations between India and Japan. Tagore was a great lover of Japanese culture. Before WWII, he wrote a series of letters to his Japanese friend to expressed sadness over growing nationalism within Japan and nations around the world… India included. Tagore was an internationalist.
The epic is amazing and there are heroes, chariots, Rakshashas, Rishis and Giant Vultures, Hanuman and his army of monkeys etc etc. Even in the novelised version I read, it said – This reads like Lord of the Rings. And really it did (Josh and I spent a nice Sat morning lying on the mattress and watching parts of it on the trusty old iBook. He kept asking, are the monsters going to fight? Who is this who is that? Why is that tree talking?
I really loved the relationship between Prince Rama and his brothers, especially the dutiful Lakshmana.
The anime version is really entertaining and watching all the characters come alive in vivid colours is really amazing. Even though its a bit cartoonish, the show is nuanced through each character’s expression (even the extras) which are given detailed consideration. I liked the way when Rama’s brother said that he would not take the throne from Rama even though it was transfered to him but would serve the sandals he wore, the soldiers in the background cocked their head ever so slightly in the direction of the conversation between the two brothers.