AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby LightDragonman » Sun Mar 29, 2020 10:55 am

Furthermore, it's necessary to see if Anno will use Shinji's guilt in a literal sense (responsibility for the death of human beings) or in a metaphorical sense for fandom, in the sense that killing humanity is Anno's way to show concretely a mistake at the public beyond the fourth wall. The catastrophes feed the imagination of Japanese cinema and in the Tracks interview Anno says that he uses animation to vent his internal catastrophes, that is, the catastrophes that occur for example in Evangelion are the mirror of internal traumas. In this sense catastrophe is a metaphor.


Not quite sure what this implies. Basically, him killing all those people is to be seen more as a metaphor? Like, that's not exactly something one can just gloss over and move on from without their being some sort of payment. I take offense to things only making sense from a thematic standpoint.
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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby ElMariachi » Sun Mar 29, 2020 11:00 am

View Original PostArcadia's legacy wrote:Probably in part due to the fact that Kaworu deliberately withholds information Shinji should really know about, such as when Kaworu Speared him at the end of 2.0, or that he says removing the spears will somehow fix everything, but he doesn't really elaborate as to how or why

Or more simply that the Angel that was fused to Lilith at the epicenter of the Impact that screwed the world was the 12th Angel, while the last one Shinji fought was the 10th, and that there was also a Mark.06 modified to be autonomous, while in 2.0 it was said that it would be piloted by Kaworu, both things clearly meaning that there's a vital piece of the picture missing that led to the red Earth, a piece that Kaworu didn't bothered to tell Shinji even though it was clearly vital for Shinji to understand what happened and where his faults lied exactly, that's why I (and others) have suspicions toward Kaworu.
Last edited by ElMariachi on Mon Mar 30, 2020 4:40 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby Shun » Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:09 pm

Not quite sure what this implies. Basically, him killing all those people is to be seen more as a metaphor? Like, that's not exactly something one can just gloss over and move on from without their being some sort of payment. I take offense to things only making sense from a thematic standpoint.


Both the narrative point of view and the thematic / metaphorical point of view could be considered in Shin Eva, but with different weights. I think the latter will have a greater weight, mainly for two reasons:

1) If the genocide had a purely narrative weight and it was only Shinji's fault, it would be a more disastrous event than WWII, a catastrophic event that occurred by the hands of a single boy, because Shinji, while trying to save Ayanami, shouted "I don't care what happens to me. I don't care what happens to the world. " Could Anno do it? Yes, but in my opinion it wouldn't make much sense from reality point of view.
This weight in real life is difficult to imagine and perceive, it is too big, too far from the concrete experience of the spectator. Baudrillard made the example of war: the experience of war through news on TV is very different from the real war. Consequently, if we consider the weight of the "real event" very seriously, we recognize that its counterpart in the work, that is, the "fictitious event", is inevitably a simplification, and therefore Shinji's fault, the path to expiate it, and resolution would never be enough. In reality, such a thing is too big to be handled appropriately in a film, book or comic, even only for the short time available.

Warning: I'm not saying that Shinji fault has to be trivialized because Evangelion is an animated film, no, I'm saying that Anno can seriously handle the matter, but, imho, will never be enough. And we know that NTE is not enough serious, Mari drinks tea during a battle and the camera frames her bouncing boobs. Come on.
So, in my opinion, it's necessary to reduce expectations and see the work for what it is, without demanding a content complexity that exceeds the medium, the target and what NTE has shown us so far. Even EoE seems like a joke if we take it seriously, because there is a "magic restoration": all humanity is destroyed but every human being can go back to living if he really wants to (magic restoration). Also in this case the message is more thematic metaphorical than narrative. The events have the purpose of staging depression, the escapist dream, the pros and cons, the choice to live.

What NTE can do is make Shinji and the viewer think on the weight of daily choices. How much do my choices weigh on others? They can weigh a lot. A company pollutes more than one person, but all the people in the world with their choices can pollute a lot, since each choice is linked to a complex chain of things. My choices can stress and destroy people, even a nation (if I am a politician, a president), but from here to a single boy who exterminates humanity... it's too exaggerated from reality point of view. So: metaphor.
Like the magical restoration in EoE, even in NTE a magical restoration of people could be allowed. If people are the Failure of Infinity maybe they could return at real form of human beings. Maybe.

2) If we consider the cause of the disaster as an act of adolescent rebellion and see it from a thematic / metaphorical point of view, the question is reduced and takes on much more meaning. Animation is a "what if?" for us, is simulacrum that can allow the author to convey messages through the forms that he puts on stage. Forms can be giant robots that face giant monsters, but none of us in life face kaiju. As Anno said to the philosopher Hiroki Azuma about NGE:

AZUMA: Finally, only one question about the "set up" of the work. The enemy called "Angel" has no concrete image. It might be a pyramid, a ring of light, a virus…. in what way did you intend that?
ANNO: They were paradoxically presented as things without form. For me the idea of ​​an "enemy" is ambiguous, because my relationship to "society" is ambiguous ... .. The adults of the previous generation taught us that, despite fighting against the system, they were not able to accomplish anything.

The Angels have the form of incomprehensible monsters, but they serve to convey to Shinji and the viewer the sense of ambiguous uneasiness that Anno perceived in the Japanese society of the nineties. The Angels of Evangelion are like environmental problems, financial crises, relationship difficulties, etc.
For this reason I think that the thematic / metaphorical point of view, also explained in the Tracks interview, is the fundamental point and that which Anno will focus the message.

So, I think the only way to deal with this mistake (N3I and 4I) is that Shinji will have to live with this forever. This is the price to pay. In 3.0 Shinji wanted to reset the error but there were no elements to do it, in Shin Eva he might have the opportunity to reset the error, but the price to pay will be high (eg reset an error by committing a new error) and eventually Shinji will decide to accept his mistakes and live with them. At the same time Shinji will try to become more responsible, day by day. Maybe Shinji could restore some things, but I think that most of the message will consist of accepting your condition and your world, to learn how to do things starting from this state of things. Like in 2.0 the marine research center restore day by day sea water without a magic ritual.
I honestly imagine something like this, and it's a metaphor for us.

But obvsly this is only my idea, my feeling. We'll see...
Last edited by Shun on Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:47 am, edited 8 times in total.
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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby robersora » Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:34 pm

View Original PostShun wrote:Hideaki Anno - Tracks interview
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4CdNJqgCRLU


omg, this is essential and I didn't even know about it!
Thankfully, there's an English translation in the comments!

SPOILER: Show
capitainedomper9
3 months ago
Interview in English :


There is a bond, an energy, which unites each individual to the outside world.
And I, as a director, am going to be interested in that connection.
By showing how a person's interior is physically and spiritually connected to the world around them.
And animation is the ideal medium to make this connection visible.
The animation allows me to put in parallel the idea of disaster that occurs in the outside world...
with the inner traumas experienced by every Human.


For me creativity is an act of filling a hole you have inside you!
If we leave this gaping hole, our anxieties take over our bodies
and it is no longer possible for us to go on living.
But these fears of disaster, these visions of the end of the world that I have within me,
I also have to get them out of me sometimes.
And it's the animation that helps me do that.


Images of the real world never made me anxious.
When I was a kid, it was monster movies that made me shake with fear.
I particularly remember "The War of the Gargantuas".
That movie terrified me. Yeah, seeing those monster movies had an impact on me.


Animation is the ideal medium to stage everything you have in mind.
And what do we usually keep in our heads?
A lot of frustration and desires that are impossible to express
in a classical medium connected with reality.
Whereas with animation, we can represent everything, since it is already imaginary.
And that explains the success of animation movies.
Because for their viewers, watching these movies,
it's also a way to satisfy his most secret desires.


View Original PostShun wrote:Yeee, I'm waiting CRC!

Yeah, it's confirmed, at least... now if just *some* publisher would be kind enough to translate it...
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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby Derantor » Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:15 am

View Original PostShun wrote:Also in [the case of EoE] the message is more thematic metaphorical than narrative.

That depends entirely on your point of view. If you focus on the narrative, EoE works just as well as a cautionary tale that vowing to accept and change yourself is meaningless if you come to the conclusion too late, or as a bleak statement that change for the better is completely impossible in the first place since in the end, Shinji is not only more violent than before but also more fragile while Asuka is disgusted by having shown kindness to him. That's only possible because narrative and metaphorical content don't support each other well, sometimes not at all, making one or the other seem like a joke at times. Besides, it doesn't have a fixed message in the first place; if it did, narrative and metaphor would reinforce each other to nail that message down.

View Original PostShun wrote:At the same time Shinji will try to become more responsible, day after day. I honestly imagine something like this, and it's a metaphor for us.

If EoE is anything to go by, it will just be the observation that he could do that, without any confirmation that he actually does. And if the current direction of the NTE is something to go by, the contradiction between narrative and metaphor will be even more pronounced than in EoE, since the movies are generally much more extreme.

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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby Shun » Mon Mar 30, 2020 3:47 am

I understand what you mean. From a narrative point of view Shinji killed everyone but then decides to go back, it's late, there is no one else, there are only him and Asuka. However, leaving aside the fact that this scene quote the final scene of Go Nagai's manga Devilman, from the narrative point of view people can be reborn (Ideon). Of course, it's not shown us, but on the other hand we see only few minutes about Shinji and Asuka - fourteen years old - on the beach. And when will they be 15 years old? Will there be other people too? What about 25 years old? 35? 45? 55? 65? 75? 85? 95? Life doesn't end at fourteen.
The movie ends there, because Anno, otaku, hikikomori and anyone have difficulties, must have to start from here. It would be too late only if there were no narrative possibility of rebirth. In EoE rebirth is a magical restoration, but in our world it's impossible, so in EoE it's a metaphor. Because if we want to consider the narrative plan in a way that is meaningful to Shinji and the viewers, there must be something analogous in the real world. Giving too much importance to the narrative plane as a thing in itself, as if it were detached from reality, can lead to escapism. Physical rebirth from death isn't possible, but rebirth as a metaphor is possible. Shinji rebirth is a message to break the dream, a impulse to live. The death is a metaphor to depression, the rebirth is a metaphor to will of live. It will too late if Shinji continue to do nothing, but EoE does not say this. Thinking about this means basking in self-pity. Shinji and Asuka have returned, so it's possible that other people will also return. But the point of EoE isn't this, the point is simply that beach is the starting point for Shinji, Anno and all those who have difficulties beyond the fourth wall.

EoE is gloomy, and airtight, but:
1) Shinji and Asuka are fourteen, they have plenty of time to change. It is not too late. The difference between NGE ending and EoE ending is that episode 26 is too hasty, as if a person could change quickly, instead EoE warns us that it takes time. That's all. In the end, the depressive point of view is concentrated on Shinji and Asuka, while Yui, Rei, Kaworu say us some positive messages. In my opinion, we have to consider the whole thing, not just strangulation and kimochi warui. Lights and shadows, like the Tao.
2) That is Anno's state of mind in 1997, he was 37 years old, he was an otaku who had fought depression for a few years, he went on the roof of GAINAX to understand if he wanted live or die. Really, what do you expect from this kind of person?

1996 interview
ANNO: Among the people who use the Internet, many are obtuse. Because they are locked in their rooms, they hang on to that vision which is spreading across the world. [...] I just want to say ‘come back to real life [réalité] and get to know the world’. [...] That’s why I tried to go to the rescue of Japanese animation. I do not say, like [Shuji] Terayama, to ‘throw away your books and flee the city’, but to go to town and meet people. Why can I say that? Well, I noticed what I was missing for me, in my heart. For twenty-one years I have been an anime-fan, and now, thirty-five years old, I notice with sorrow: I’m nothing but an honest fool (laughs).

1998 interview
ANNO: I think that’s more or less what I said. Anime and manga are completely fictional picture worlds, and thus what happens in them is impossible in real life. Now, there are two approaches you can take. You can either make it look like a dream all the way to the end, where you bring it back to reality, or you can show reality all the way to the end, and finish up with a dream. A lot of anime starts out as a dream, and ends as a dream. This is no good, because it feels like you’re using dreams as a retreat. And Japan is not such a tough place to live.
I can’t help but wonder why people are withdrawing into dreams in a reasonably prosperous country. A lot of these people in particular are anime fans, and for a while I couldn’t deal with that. I got fed up with Evangelion too, for that reason. I can’t stand people who run away, who refuse to face reality. Surely you’ll find something for yourself if you face reality head on. If nothing else, take a good look at your immediate surroundings. Don’t turn away from unpleasantness. Have a look at it too. With this in mind, ultimately I want to show a little reality in my works. If nothing else, I don’t feel any realism in something that has no reality mixed in with it.


2004 interview
ANNO: Myself personally, I am ignorant of philosophy. I have never really done anything “philosophical.” Eva has been described in this way, but it is “pedantic” rather than [a work of] philosophy. [A caption explaining pedantry: “To boast of one’s knowledge”] Um, I think “pretending to know” is the closest expression. Pedantic…
HONJO: “Pretending to know”…
ANNO: It means that, if I use this word, even though I don’t really understand it, then I appear intelligent… (slight audience laughter). That was [the case with] Eva. However, things that seemed intelligent suddenly appeared “cool.” “There’s something hidden, isn’t there?” I think, getting to that point, that was the methodology [of Eva]… How do I put it - for me film is a “service industry.” The customers supply the money, if it’s a movie [they] come to see it paying 1000 [yen] or so, so your job, I think, is to give back to the customers something interesting or something they enjoyed seeing of equal value to the 1000 or so that the customers paid. At least, since this is a service industry, you have to give the customers something like a “satisfied feeling.” I think you have to put that into the film. So, um, I feel the situation with Eva was that it was “too effective”… Something like a “yorishiro” [vessel to which a kami is summoned] of escapism. It was increasingly becoming something like a “device” in which [people] were taking refuge from reality, but I felt disgusted seeing this. When the film was made (it opened in theaters in 1997), I expected this from the beginning, however, I wanted the viewers to wake up and return, dousing them, for the moment, with cold water… that [intention] was there. For me, this was also “service.” I think this was something good for the viewers. I think that continuing on that way, being in a comfortable place the whole time, is also one [kind of] service, but in the case of Eva I felt like I could no longer do this. I had to at least include a kind of impetus for them to wake up… I did that in the end, because it was something good for the viewers. For me that was also “service.”



In 2013 Anno said: "human beings don't change quickly", and in fact every now and then he falls into depression. But in 2.0 he added things from his new life, for example:
ANNO: I thought that I would attempt to adopt a slight fixation with the idea of “eating”. The influence of my wife is significant. Owing to her, I have changed a little bit. So, I tried increasing the emphasis on meals. [...] The increase in the amount of car scenes is the same; it’s because I started driving. From the time I got my license right after I left high school up until my marriage, I have practically been a “paper driver”. The streets of Tokyo are frightening. I started driving eight years ago, and became interested in cars for the first time. I started to remember the makes and models of cars, and I began being able to hold conversations with Sadamoto and Tsurumaki about cars. So, this time, I wanted to try to put as much of those parts of me that hadn’t existed at the time of the old series or twelve years ago into [the film] as I could. Things like having an interest in eating meals, or riding cars, or being in Kamakura with my wife, or, at a social level, being married, and also working at my own new production studio. It’s a reaction to those parts. Unless I intentionally imbued [the film] with those parts of me that didn’t exist twelve years ago, then I would feel like things hadn’t changed after all.
I thought it would be good if these, if those “feelings” that weren’t previously present would take hold in the film. And for new interesting points that I could not fill in myself, I intended on quickly inserting new elements from the staff like Tsurumaki or Masayuki to get [the whole thing] into chaos…


Always in 2013 Anno said: "In the original Eva, there were many people who took something that I created as a source of amusement beyond those limits and made it into an object of dependence. I wanted to take responsibility for the fact that such people had been so “inflated.” I wanted to bring the work back within the boundaries of entertainment. However, I have now withdrawn from dealing with it [or: from treating it thematically?]. Such people will not change no matter what I say. I now well understand that there is nothing I can do."

And in 2016 Anno said: "We are making concrete progress on Shin Evangelion. I’m sorry for making fans wait so long. I hope to have the time to get it done now. Once it’s over, I hope other creators will do other Eva. Obviously, because I want them to be appealing works, it won’t be without specific conditions, but I will not confine them to what my works have established. Just like Gundam, which keeps continuously supporting the animation world, Eva can become a new pillar. After all, it is the purpose that led me to resume through the New Theatrical Versions. I want to maintain this pillar, which carries the animation world. The more pillars there are, the better for the environment will be, won’t it? That’s how I see it. Rather than for my company, I do this for the wellbeing of the animation industry. Gundam can be enjoyed through various works, and it would be nice if Eva can develop in the same way. I think it’s better if there is a diversity in the works. [...] I think the animation industry will go three ways: works aimed at children works for maniacs and works of entertainment aimed at the widest possible targets. Eva is a work whose story targetting maniacs has encountered a large success, and this is one path at which KHARA is aiming. When works target children, it is believed they should be mass-produced like in a factory. I don’t want KHARA to be a factory but a workshop where artisans meticulously manufacture works. We are lucky enough to have numerous directors and artisans, and I think we will do our anime one by one with our means. Rather than expanding and becoming a factory, I’d rather think about how to create a multitude of workshops. Concerning how we will sell the accomplished works and where to find the next production’s finances, it will all depend on the works’ quality. Anyway, I want to keep creating high-quality works which will make a reputation for our company’s skills."

I didn't say that the ending of Evangelion will be full of rainbows and smiles. Don't misunderstand. EoE has shadows and lights, what seems to you a contradiction between narrative pov and metaphorical pov, is simply complexity. Do you know the Tao symbol? In the ending of Evangelion we find many things, because in life there are many things in a dialectical relationship.

Something like this could happen in the ending of Shin Eva, but with the necessary differences, considering that the story is different, the era is different, Anno is different, Anno's life is different.

I read your post about NTE, so I know what do you think about it. Your opinion is critical, but it is legitimate.
I think NTE summarizes some things from Anno's life, also considering what he has experienced in the past 25 years. I also think it is less painful than NGE, because in NTE Anno seems to me a little more detached. Anno said that he started Rebuild as first works for Khara because Evangelion would allow the company to make money, but the initial project didn't foresee a time of 14 years, they wanted to make a film every year or every two years.
In 1.0 Shinji arrives in Tokyo-3 and work at Nerv, Anno feels alone and not alone working in the animation industry; 2.0 talks about Shinji's relationships with people, Anno learns to relate with others; 3.0 talks about alienation after a mistakes, Anno shows the depression and the mistakes that are made in life; Shin Eva could tell about the acceptance of one's life, of what one is and of what one has, Anno opinion about it. Does this mean that Anno will no longer have difficulties with himself and with the world? No. Evangelion is just a creative work, an impulse to live and to continue walking, it is not a professional therapy or something similar.
As for the fandom, Evangelion has something to say only to those who are sick and would like to change at the bottom of their hearts, I don't think Anno makes the sermons thinking he is a wise teacher of life. In your post you talk about otaku who don't want to change, about children in violent families etc. but Evangelion is only an animation work, not the fundamental answer to all the problems of the world. Anno simply tells about his experiences, his answers, his attempts. It seems honest to me. Perhaps it is we who overestimate Evangelion and Anno, looking for mysterious and profound philosophical, psychological answers, while Anno has declared that (for example) he hasn't studied Kierkegaard in depth, that he hasn't done a philosophical work and that he hasn't made a human drama.

My only question for those who think the ending will be dramatic is: Evangelion is a story that has been going on for 25 years and is a story that Anno hopes will become an animation pillar like Gundam, why should it end badly? Because Anno is a otaku 60 years old?
Anno has chosen to wait some years before make Shin Evangelion, in order to heal and find new creativity, and now, after working on the animator expo and Shin Godzilla, he working on Shin Eva. Seriously, I see no seriously reason to think that Anno will destroy Shinji.
Rather I see NTE as a story where Anno thinks about his life. The mistakes he made in the past, the things he learned over time, the moments of loneliness and relationships with people, the moments of disorientation and depression, in which he was difficult to move forward, and the moments of happiness, the thought to change the past and the recognition of the positive things that he have make in the past, skills, competences, interests, relationships with others, marriage, friends... A life with lights and shadows, with difficulties and happiness.

But if you (not you, I say in general) are convinced that Shin Eva will end badly, well, I won't try to change your mind. I can't do anything, I don't want to convince you with my opinion, simply: let's wait for the last movie and we'll see. :)
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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby pwhodges » Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:04 pm

View Original PostShun wrote:But if you (not you, I say in general) are convinced that Shin Eva will end badly, well, I won't try to change your mind. I can't do anything, I don't want to convince you with my opinion, simply: let's wait for the last movie and we'll see. :)

Well, as many have spent over 20 years arguing about whether EoE has a good end or a bad end, maybe we won't for a while!!
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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby Derantor » Mon Mar 30, 2020 3:35 pm

Shun wrote:Life doesn't end at fourteen

Of course not - but since every living thing was made into LCL, the disruption to the ecosphere is severe enough to endanger life on the planet as a whole. Not so speak of the aftereffects of Rei crashing back down to earth, the dissolution of people into LCL at inconvenient times (crashing planes, fires burning without anybody able to stop them, nuclear and chemical accidents, etc). Technically, not even the bacteria in their stomach would return with them, since they are lifeforms of their own, and must thus return of their own free will (Iruel supports the view that microscopic life follows the same rules as macroscopic life), condemning them to death right there and then.

I know of the metaphorical interpretation (and for the record, I agree that that is the intended meaning of it all, and the one most likely correct) - the beach as the starting point, but given that Annos message is also anti-escapist, it would only be fitting if there would be no way to continue the stories of the main characters as a reinforcement of his point that you have to get out into real life - which Eva isn't. You quoted his interview: "I had to at least include a kind of impetus for them to wake up… I did that in the end, because it was something good for the viewers." But, given audience identification with the characters, that also means that for THEMSELVES there is no way forward. Unintentionally compromising his whole message because he overdid it with the "cold water".

Shun wrote:In the end, the depressive point of view is concentrated on Shinji and Asuka, while Yui, Rei, Kaworu say us some positive messages.

That's another problem. The Audience will most likely identify with the two pilots - in EoE, only Shinji is examined in detail, and almost all of his statements are ones of reluctant acceptance and defeat, not of actual will to change. Yui, Rei and Kaworu are not dead, but removed from the real world by the end of the story. They belong to the dreamworld, the fantastic, while Shinji, the representant of humanity and reality, is left alone. So everything they say ALSO belongs to the dreamworld: As Shinji said, a hopeful delusion, which can't possibly last. Shinji in that sense becomes the arbiter of reality: It would be nice if there was hope and change and all that, but that's just a dream. Speaking for reality, his point of view is the "realistic" one, and thus "true".

I only focus so much on the last spoken words because their placement right at the end of the movie, after a prolonged series of silence, gives them special weight. A final comment or realization at the end. If those words weren't there, it would be far easier to accept the end as an overall neutral statement, a starting point from where change can happen. To me, the "disgusting" puts a general negative on everything, though. It colours the whole experience. Like a symphony, where the last notes are completely dissonant to the point of becoming a statement against harmony itself, if that makes sense.

Shun wrote:Really, what do you expect from this kind of person?

That he makes a whole movie pointing out the absurdity of well intentioned vows and kind words meant to encourage people, while in reality, everything will just get worse and worse until you give up - even if it just subconciously creeps into the work. At least that's what happens to me when I try to write while depressed, where every positive thing happening in the story feels unrealistic, while the end-product is so negative and bleak that it can only seem realistic to the depressed mind. I just assume that it is similar for Anno, and with him wanting to portray reality, he of course portrays his reality.

Shun wrote:what seems to you a contradiction between narrative pov and metaphorical pov, is simply complexity.

Not quite. Saying life doesn't end at fourteen, they can grow up and there is always the chance for change is directly contradicted by putting them in a place where their lifes will most likely end in the near future and any chance for positive change and introspection has to stand back behind the realities of living in a post-apocalyptic world. Those are the contradictions I talk about - which are only important if you assume there is some overall (positive) message behind it all, and don't take Eva just as an observation of life from the point of view of somebody suffering from depression and existential crisis.

Shun wrote:I don't think Anno makes the sermons thinking he is a wise teacher of life.

Interesting that you call it a sermon - because that is exactly what Eva comes off as: A gospel for the new century. A lesson, a work which has something to say. Whole sections of the show are nothing but direct statements to the audience. So at one time, Anno certainly must have thought of himself as a teacher - which is why people search for answers (or at least insight) in the first place.

Shun wrote:Perhaps it is we who overestimate Evangelion and Anno, looking for mysterious and profound philosophical, psychological answers

Most definitely. But opening up so many deep questions from the perspective of psychology and the human struggle, the show itself begs to be seen in this way. Anno saying we have to find our own answers prompts us to think deeply about it; just as leaving it all so ambiguous does. Which ironically directly goes against his message against escapism; by making it so complex and multifaceted, any understanding of the work requires substantial analysis in the first place, which becomes a form of escapism in itself. Anno said he wanted to portray reality, in other words the truth, from his point of view. Naturally, we want to find out what that means.

Shun wrote:Seriously, I see no seriously reason to think that Anno will destroy Shinji.

He did that already in EoE, more or less, and NTE makes him less likeable overall while his mistakes are far more obvious and stupid. It would only be natural to assume that that trend continues, since Eva never was about giving Shinji a good end, as you said, it is Anno basically talking to himself and the audience.

Shun wrote:But if you (not you, I say in general) are convinced that Shin Eva will end badly, well, I won't try to change your mind.

No, I think it will end on the same ambiguous note as EoE, where it is nominally hopeful and optimistic, but only if you ignore the narrative side of things completely and detach the story from the metaphor. But you are right, I'll just wait and see.

I find it difficult to express what I want to say. My comment was mostly about the technical aspect of narrative and metaphorical interpretation supporting one another. If we take classic western stories, we have: Hero finds village in need, Hero slays dragon, Hero saves village, everybody is happy and Hero gets reward. There is a clear meaning hear: A problem is identified, an obstacle is overcome, it benefits society and it benefits the person which overcame the obstacle. The dragon is of course metaphor, it can be anything, as severe as depression or as mundane as resolving to finally mow the lawn, and the reward is arbitrary as well. But the narrative itself follows the same trajectory as the message, so both of them reinforce each other.

Eva meanwhile piles on so much complexity that any message can be taken from it, as I tried to demonstrate with my ramblings above, while there is a distinct difference between narrative and metaphorical trajectory - one being clearly upwards, while the other is clearly downwards, which in turn weakens any message you take from it, maybe to the point of there not being any message inherent in it at all.

Anyways, as I said, I am unable to formulate my thoughts clearly, which can only mean that I went wrong somewhere or struggle with cognitive dissonance. Maybe it is just the impossibility of finding concrete answers to ambiguous questions that gets to me. As pwhodges said, people argued about this for twenty years already, I am just late to the party and haven't even made my mind up yet where I stand. I can only say that I feel one thing and think another.

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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby Shun » Tue Mar 31, 2020 10:50 am

@pwhodges
I just mean that I don't like to lengthen the discussions too much. I agree with the comparison between various opinions, but I prefer to be brief. Btw, Anno himself wondered if episode 26 was good or not: good or don’t be? (ending bgm) :facepalm: :lol:

@Derantor
Probably the difference between our points of view is that I consider the narrative level as a simple vehicle for metaphors, like a stroller carrying a baby, and therefore I consider it hierarchically less important than the content level.
The ending of EoE is bit sad and disturbing, I would have liked to see an ending like Fushigi no umi no Nadia, in which Shinji and the other characters have finally learned to live, like the Hero you say. In many films, books and comics, the narrative level and the content level are closer and walk together, and in the end both the narrative and the metaphor level support the same message. There is a catharsis. But I think Anno's attempt to do something different is also interesting, also from an artistic and creative point of view, so I see Evangelion as an exception. For me it's a brave attempt.

Evangelion can be a metatextual impulse to live in the real world (remember for example the live scene in EoE, "your reality is at the end of your dream"), and if we understand the metaphor we shouldn't worry about the narrative level so much. There are much more important real things to worry about, such as loved ones. Evangelion seems to say something like: don't worry about the characters of a cartoon, they are just drawings, take care of yourself and the world near you.
We don't have to search the answers within Evangelion, we have to search them in our real world. Evangelion is just one story among many. A story created by a introverted Japanese man born in 1960, fan of sci-fi, tokusatsu and anime, that decided to work in the animation industry. We don't know the answer that Anno gave to himself, Evangelion says "Nigecha dame da", "Take care of yourself" and "I need you", but each of us must search for his own way and his own answers by himself, living in the real world.

But I can imagine how you feel, and I understand your doubts. If Shin Eva also ended like EoE I would be a bit sorry. Even if they are only drawings, this time I would prefer a a bit more serene ending, not joyful with smiles and rainbows, but something that makes us greet Shinji in a bit more classic way. If Anno were to make a destructive, ambiguous and melancholy ending like EoE, I would accept it anyway. My sanity doesn't depend on Evangelion. But, this time my feeling is that Eva will ending better. As I said it's Eva 25th anniversary, Anno has changed a little, is married, has learned new things, waited sometime before making the last film, so I am confident. I could be wrong, of course, but I want to believe it. :)
What is essential is invisible to the eye.

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Re: AVANT 1 italian analysis & Rebuild's message

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Postby Derantor » Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:44 pm

Shun wrote:and therefore I consider it hierarchically less important than the content level.

Oh sure, that is always the case. But still, the actual story informs how the metaphoric level is percieved. A vehicle it may be, but if your vehicle drives off a cliff while somebody in it screams a message how nothing ever falls off a cliff, the message becomes absurd. I don't mean that Eva is like that, this was just an extreme example.

Shun wrote:don't worry about the characters of a cartoon, they are just drawings, take care of yourself and the world near you.

If you want people to let go of characters, you give them a definitive end, though. Not saying Anno should do that - but making an ambiguous but actually balanced ending instead of a bleak one would fit his message better. That loses much of its emotional gut-punch, of course.

Shun wrote:We don't have to search the answers within Evangelion, we have to search them in our real world.

Sure. But if we want to understand Eva, we have to search within it. Making a work that needs viewers to pay close attention to detail and deep analysis to even get what it tries to say is not conductive to letting people just move on. In that way, Eva is self-defeating. It tells you to go out into the real world, but it is designed to capture your attention any way it can and make you think.

Shun wrote:but something that makes us greet Shinji in a bit more classic way.

Or, if he wants to push the boundaries a little more, just make us hate him by the end. That's another surefire way to kill interest in a character and make people forget about them while they might still get your message. Anyways, as we said, we'll just wait and see. You are most likely right. I just need to get my negativity off my chest from time to time, and there is no better way to do that than to have your point proven wrong anyways.


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