POTATO ON THE GO COVERAGE (Movie):
by Sine Gang (Jane Villa)
Fan art dreams do come true. Kenshin, Kaoru, and Sano appears in modern-day fashion and it was glorious!
Ever wonder what it would feel like when Kenshin Himura, Kamiya Kaoru, and Sanosuke Sagara materialises before your very eyes wearing present-day clothes?
It felt like the ultimate fan art dream come true; your favorite 19th-century manga characters time-traveling to the year 2014 and looking dapper and fashion-forward in suits and a dress.
Like a cross-over scene straight out of Once Upon a Time's Storybrooke, and Kenshin, Kaoru, and Sano were actual, real people existing among us regular folks.
The mind-blowing surreality was enough to drive the thousands of Rurouni Kenshin fans into hysterics of almost Beatlemanic proportions, minus the crying and the fainting, from the moment the three characters stepped on the entrance of SM Megamall.
The characters arrived in Manila for a two-day treat to Filipino fans - the red carpet Asian Premiere of Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno at SM Megamall on August 6 and a public press conference at Glorietta, Ayala Center on August 7.
The actors who played them, Takeru Satoh (Kenshin), Emi Takei (Kaoru), and Munetaka Aoki (Sano), proved to their fans, some coming from as far as Pangasinan up North to Davao down South, that they were perfect for their respective roles, breathing the illustrated manga/anime characters into life, exactly as fans imagined them to be.
Munetaka San in particular was like a living, breathing Sanosuke in a suit and flip flops, providing comic-relief in every opportunity that presented itself, displaying the right amount of swagger as he delighted fans with Tagalog street slang. "Ashi-tig (Astig)" was his Pinoy buzz word of choice.
Takeru San displayed his Kenshin the wanderer comic side when he granted a fan's request to do his signature expression, "Oro?!" and his serious, Kenshin the hitokiri side when he waxed philosophical about why Rurouni Kenshin the series resonated so much with Asian audiences.
Emi San was endearing and cute. Hearing her talk was like listening to a regular conversation Kaoru is having with Kenshin, Yahiko, Sano and Megumi at the Kamiya Dojo.
To say that the fans were giddy would be an understatement, if the excited squeals from fans every time their images would be flashed on screen were any indication. Their response to the actors was even more insane as each answer was met with cheers and applause and more squeals.
Not to be sidelined is the movie's director, Keishi Ohtomo, who received the same warm and energetic response from the audience. The fans accorded him a much-deserved respect and reverence for doing right by the manga and anime. Working closely with series creator Nobuhiro Watsuki, he was able to bring out everything it should take from the cast and the production to make the film as true to the spirit and story of the manga.
Hence, when asked how he would feel if Hollywood would do an English-language remake of his film, he just nonchalantly replied, "They are free to attempt to do it." The fans, however, were less politically correct. As soon as the question was asked the audience uttered a collective, loud NO!!!
Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno lived up to the fans expectations set by the first film. The movie will open on August 20 in theaters nationwide. The third installment, Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends will screen on September 24.
For a more personal perspective from the writer, she wrote her experience attending the public press conference here: http://janeymack0.wordpress.com/2014/08/07/some-embarrassments-are-worth-it-or-how-rurouni-kenshin-changed-my-life/