Tatsumi (15)

Voices: Tetsuya Bessho, Motoko Gollent
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The Independent Culture

Eric Khoo's film pays tribute to the life and work of the Japanese comics artist Yoshihiro Tatsumi, who in the late 1950s shook up a child-friendly genre by introducing darker adult themes into his work.

This combines a selection of his renowned stories, couched in the original manga style, with snippets of Tatsumi's autobiography, narrated by the man himself. The first of the five stories, "Hell", is the most striking, a photographer's memoir of Hiroshima with a sinister twist in the tale. The rest are mostly concerned with familial discord and romantic disillusion, as seen through the eyes of factory workers, failing writers and put-upon streetwalkers. Some are quite tantalising, breaking off just as they start to intrigue, but they are all of a piece in training an amused and jaundiced eye on the human comedy.