Via Moon Phase Diary: Today an animated version of the story of Megumi Yokota was released for free download by the Japanese Government Abduction Issue Countermeasure Headquarters (政府拉致問題対策本部), an agency that works to resolve the issue of North Korean abductions of Japanese citizens (an official explanation can be found here). It’s a 25 minute short “documentary anime” that covers Megumi’s life from birth through abduction and the subsequent unresolved quest to determine her fate, and seems to have received some budget as the film was simultaneously released dubbed in four languages (Japanese, English, Chinese, and Korean). I downloaded the English version first expecting subtitles, and was greeted by a truly awful dub – I shut it down as soon as Megumi’s mom went into labor and decided to watch the Japanese version instead.


Heisei Democracy anime news: North Korean abductee anime documentary

This is a fascinating piece from several angles, both as a look at the rare intersection of documentary and anime narrative forms, and in light of its overtly political / propagandistic nature. It’s something I’m sure a visual anthropologist would have a field day dissecting – Moeyo’s initial response is “for this topic, is it really alright to give Megumi such a moe design?” An interesting question, in light of the film’s purpose. (no more)