Japan sinks 2020 story plot is simple. A big earthquake hits Japan and the Islands began to Sink. In the Anime, we follow a family of four on their journey of escaping a sinking japan. Along the way, they meet up with multiple characters and losing many as well in their quest for survival.
Before we get into the meat of the anime, be sure to check my article on Netflix’s Aggretsuko and maybe, if you’re into an equally old anime like One Piece, be sure to check my list of best One Piece Quotes. But have you heard of Hi-Score Girl? Do check that as well. Check out my other review as well, like my latest Kono Oto Tomare! Sounds of Life Review, Arakawa Under the Bridge review, or my old time favourite Fumetsu no Anata e Review. And finally, check out my newest article on Cowboy Bebop, really nice anime series.
Japan sinks 2020 is an interesting story with many twists and turns. It keeps one completely engaged in the series. It has some pretty graphic scenes which kept me engaged throughout the film. The Father of the family, for example, getting blown up to pieces by a hidden bomb or mine while he was trying to dig for Yams in a field. The explosion was so powerful that it instantly blew him to smithereens and blood and pieces of him flew all-over. I especially liked how his hand flew and they showed a closeup of it to the audiences. In this case, however, the emotions as portrayed by the family were a little bit off for me.
Especially because it was it was at the beginning of their hard journey. The coolness and calmness were too eerie for me. One can’t suppress their emotions like that automatically. Especially if the person/ persons are not individuals who have seen violence on a daily basis. Even if the arguments were to be made that the shock was too much for them and that they could not react expectedly. I would not be convinced so easily that seeing a father, a husband blown to pieces, would not evoke an emotion that is expected at the time. Yes, the mother and daughter had a moment later on to come to terms with what had happen but while that was believable, the initial response was not.
In continuing with that, the overall emotions expressed throughout the anime were not consistent. Some were heartfelt moments of connection but others simply lacking the empathy and feeling connected with such occurring disasters the characters faced with within the anime.
The story overall, however, was decent. It wasn’t boring, and it kept me engaged. It is a good drama series, but I felt that they could have worked on the storyline more. Even an action based anime like Naruto had a lengthy script. They could have looked at the character development and backstory to keep audiences engaged and lengthen the series altogether. The failure of the Anime to dig into the hopelessness and pain of the situation and events within the storyline and instead kept on giving back to the viewers a sense of forced optimism felt too artificial. I am personally torn at what a great plot they have versus how they rushed it. It felt like I couldn’t grasp the beauty of the story, which is supposed to be heartbreaking as Japan sinks.
To be honest, when dad was blown, I was in awe at how quickly that felt real and scary but
they kept losing me time and time again only to be brought back by a few events which kinda gave me false hope for a really great anime.
There was a scene when the Ayumu and her younger brother Go were stranded in the ocean in a life raft and their struggle to survive was depicted quite nicely. However, at the same time, it still felt rushed. Like I said, every scene, every event happening in this anime has its pros and cons, but it is quite disappointing when it is such because it had all the right tools for a kick ass anime drama series. Japan sinks 2020 had great characters throughout the series, showing diversity and commitment to character creation, but whilst it had that, they downplayed many of the influence of the characters could have had on the series itself.
Many sub-plots could have emerged from almost each character which would only have added to the anime but in my humble opinion, the creators of the anime failed to utilise them effectively and we couldn’t get attached to any of the characters of the series apart from a few, mainly, the sister Ayumu and her brother Go. Japan sinks throws me from side to side as in one aspect it was heartbreaking, entertaining, positive, great characters but at the same time abrupt, unrealistic expressions of emotions, weak utilization of available tools and hurried.
The anime had touched on some interesting subjects but because they were too abrupt and hurried; they were lost in the background and most probably would not be noticed by many of the audiences. The situation where racism reared its ugly head while the entire nation sinks was, to me, quite an interesting addition. But it happened and ended too quickly. The cult followers who choose to follow that life instead of facing reality are also interesting, but they didn’t do anything with it. It just became a sidetrack for the story instead. Even the character as important as Onodera who had data showing the sink and re-emerge of japan is not fully utilised in my opinion, they could have explored the backstory of such character in more detail.
Overall, Japan sinks 2020 will receive mix response by audiences all over. The art and animation was done well and there is not much to go into it, but the story has so much potential. I hope they do a remake as the potential for it to be a great anime series is still on the cards. People will either love the series or not, depending on the fact of how optimistic they would want the storytelling to be. In my case, it was too optimistic right from the start. It should have been darker at the beginning and maybe ended with a positive.
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