Fumiko’s Confession

The film’s sound track is a bit annoying, but this short has an energy that’s undeniable. It’s called Fumiko no Kokuhaku (or Fumiko’s Confession) and apparently it’s an independent production produced by 21-year-old student and aspiring animator, Hiroyasu Ishida. Ishida has also posted a production blog (in Japanese) featuring storyboards, backgrounds and character designs.

Director/Animation/Background/3D CG/Editing/Sound: Hiroyasu Ishida (a.k.a. Tete)
Background/3D CG Textures: YÅ«ko Iwase
3D CG Textures/Background: Kazuhiro Murakami
Animation: Tatsurō Kawano
3D CG Modeling: YÅ«saku Nagata

(Thanks, Marc Gagnon and Anime News Network)


  • Artisticulated

    Good energy indeed. A little too long on the same joke but fun. Could anybody do some anime without the white cotton panty shots? Just hoping…

  • Seth C

    the soundtrack is annoying? Really? “Comedians Gallop” from Dmitri Kabalevsky’s The Comedians? Yeah, I guess I can see why some people wouldn’t like that. But I’ve always loved that piece.

    @Artisticulated
    it wouldnt be anime without the panty shot(s)

  • J

    Really nice, polished work – the timing on the animation is great, and I love the colours…

  • Michel Van

    hilarious :-))
    only to much the white cotton panty shots

  • http://www.enigmation.de slowtiger

    Wow. I’d be proud to have created such a sequence. Sheer speed. It reminds me of the elongated shouting in “Raising Arizona” (Coen Bros.)

    Could somebody fill me in what’s actually going on? Translate the dialogue?

  • Seth C

    @slowtiger
    found this at ANN’s forum

    the beginning:
    “Umm, umm. Please go out with me!”
    “Sorry! Right now, I want to concentrate on baseball!”

    the end:
    “I’ll make miso soup for you every morning!”
    “Sorry! I want to concentrate on baseball!”

    so basically its her getting rejected twice
    the miso soup line is apparently a common marriage proposal.

  • Autumn

    Always with the panty shots.

    Loved the fastness though. Very crisp.

  • Phil

    I almost turned it off then that girl started “crying”, geez I hate that sound.

    But glad I didn’t.
    Really fun to watch. Lots of energy indeed.

  • http://www.catsuka.com Tsuka

    Thanks Catsuka for staff translation :-]

  • eh??

    Uh, i’m sorry… was this supposed to be good?

    Looked like typical pointless anime stupidity, to me. That and all I saw during the video were underwear. Again… typical pointless anime stupidity.

    So aside from that, it’s based on one really bad joke that’s not funny, with sloppy animation that flails around endlessly, means nothing, and filled with more creepy Japanese pedophiliac obsessions throughout?

    You people are insane to praise this.

    It sucks.

  • http://kitschensyngk.deviantart.com Kitschensyngk

    Whaddya mean, annoying soundtrack? That’s from FLCL!

    Nice film, by the way. The panty shots were a little much, but otherwise nice film.

    @Artisticulated:
    They don’t all use panty shots. Azumanga Daioh doesn’t.

  • http://www.animationapocalypse.blogspot.com Baron Lego

    That was really cool!

  • Patrice

    It’s nice,
    but hardly original.
    An exercise at learning from the great shorts of Gobelin perhaps?
    example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCnwHAJU9us

  • Wolfgang

    AMAZING!!!

    Fantastic rhythm, structure and animation. An absolute Brilliant Work.

  • Daniel J. Drazen

    The sequence reminded me of Chihiro’s out-of-control running down the stairs scene early in “Spirited Away” but with a heavy dollop of physical comedy. It also demonstrates one of the acceptable uses of computer animation in its handling of the backgrounds tracking with Fumiko to heighten the speed illusion. The physics of Fumiko’s descent are pure Warner Brothers/Tex Avery, especially the use of the playground slide as a booster, which is a nice break from the hyper-realism of some anime. Marvelous.

  • Russell H

    What a hilariously over-the-top parody of the cliche’d “confession of love” scene that’s found in just about every one of the “high school relationship comedy” anime series out there.

  • http://www.kohrtoons.com Robert K

    I thought this piece was brilliant, as an ex-anime lover the cliches are a tad overkill (one of my main issues with anime).

    @eh?? – come on man its supposed to be fun lighten up! Some of the best animation I have seen from Japan since FLCL, and from a 21 year old to boot.

    As far as the concept, it works, it takes a small idea and develops around a spontaneous gag, aside from the cliches i mentioned it harkens a lot to a lot of recent indy animation i have seen, other than the staircase sequence in spirited away I was also thinking of the Octopodi from last years Academy Awards.

  • andrew osmond

    Patrice is spot-on about the Gobelin comparison – it reminded me especially of Oktapodi.

    Daniel mentioned the Spirited Away ‘stairs’ scene, which builds on a similar gag in Miyazaki’s Castle of Cagliostro 20 years earlier… But the anime which takes this stuff to extremes and beyond is the feature film Mind Game, in the ‘escape the whale’ climax. You can get a taste of it in this youtube clip, but it’s nothing compared to seeing it in a cinema.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yf1qvAE_epc

    If you want to see a far more elegant anime indy short centred around a girl (by a guy who hates the ‘anime’ style as much as Eh??), try Kamiya’s Correspondence, made by a Japanese artist in Britain:
    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2snb_kamiyas-correspondence

  • Fred Cline

    It’s fun, exciting, AND annoying – this short has everything! Seriously, this is an incredible achievement for a 21 year old student.

  • Ben

    Love it. Hard not to think of FLCL though. But that had red panties so it’s completely different! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lODGcxxihEs

  • Sara H.

    I agree about the audio, but its still a beautiful bit of animation. Super talented animator, does this look like its on 1′s to you guys, or is it just me?

  • http://www.onanimation.com Daniel Caylor

    I’m pretty impressed that a 21 year old did all of that. As somebody commented, it’s a great way for him to learn the ropes, and from those who clearly inspire him, but yeah, a lot of cliches. I for one liked the panty shots, but I don’t watch a lot of anime so I’m probably not as sick of it as others. I loved the energy, and 3D sequences running through the town. This kid has directorial potential (in anime).

  • Lucy

    I adored the part where she just shot off of the slide, hehe… After seeing so many of these types of “love confession” scenes in anime, it’s great seeing the concept turned on its head like this.

    I really, really can’t wait to see what this animator has in store of us next :)

  • Patrice

    Thank you Andrew for that Mind Game link, this movie seem to be extraordinary!

    I’m guessing the subject to be consciousness, identity… type of thing? Ala Neon Genesis evangelion?

  • St. McDuck

    Completely enjoyed this. Maybe someone can throw some English subtitles on at some point, but other than that, fantastic work.

  • http://www.dirtymoves.net Matt G

    HOW DARE YOU call that song annoying… you apparently shouldn’t be writing articles for anime then…

  • http://spungella.blogspot.com Jean-Denis Haas

    I wouldn’t call this sloppy animation, but I find the yelling much more annoying than the music (I was expecting annoying music like in the new “Clash of the Titans” trailer). I could do without the panty shots, yes, but different culture I guess. But besides of all that, it’s still very impressive for an “aspiring” animator. This could be a regular production to me. It’s just a matter of time until his talents are being properly used. Good for him!!

  • vzk

    Nice backgrounds and animation, but that’s it. Hated the shameless panty shot, as well as the choice of music and cliched facial gestures.

  • Enrique

    Wow. Whether, its anime or not its a student film. The kid is just beginning. Let’s be happy for a comrade in animation. Alot of opinions, who here really has completed their own personal film project?

  • Ultra

    WOW! Student work huh? Really incredible.

    And eh?? What would you consider as good animation. I really don’t know where you’re coming from with the sloppy comment. There’s nothing sloppy about the animation OR production quaility.

  • MRoig

    There’s some top-notch action directing going on there. That’s not something to be sniffed at, certainly if it’s coming from a student. Don’t be fooled by the undies guys, this is one talented kid.

  • http://www.meanwhilestudios.com Troy Little

    I love it.

    Great energy, nice cuts, good timing and awesome drawings! Compare it all you want, this is very well done.

  • Chris Sobieniak

    Not bad for a student film I say. I think “Azumanga Daioh” also used Comedians’ Gallop too I believe.

    Seeing this film, I also thought of the work of Mamoru Hosoda, the director of “The Girl Who Leapt Through Time”, if only for the fast leaping. :-)

    The ‘confession’ is rather typical a cliche in anime for a long time, and it’s usage here still confirms that, if only as a set-up to the punch line at the end. The structure of the plot is still very simple and more what I would expect from students working on animating their early efforts.

  • http://www.daganm.blogspot.com Dagan

    wow, 21 ?!?!

    This is really superbly crafted… The timing and
    animation are both great, and the sequences are
    expertly crafted… The portrayal of speed and the overall
    frenetic pace is perfect.

    I really enjoyed this very much. Oh, and the 3D is integrated nicely!
    :)

  • Isaac

    This is definitely a highly professional, good-looking piece, but like several people already pointed out, it’s a giant heap of clichés, from the non-establishing shot of the sky at the beginning, through the non-emotional rollercoaster ride, to the non-subtle moment of sexual tension at the end.

    Still beats Flash tricks by a country mile.

  • http://www.bruandboegie.co.za Mike

    That. Was. Win.

  • http://chrisallison.blogspot.com Chris Allison

    GREAT job Hiroyasu Ishida. The most common young filmmakers mistake is to make a film too slow. He broke that by leaps and bounds. I loved the moving BG’s, and the animation looked phenomenal. Great pacing!

  • Hulk

    Is it just me or was the way she was leaping and flying through the town similar to a dream? When I fly in my dreams, it’s just like that…Except I’m not a Japanese School girl in White panties. I’m still me. Other than that, it’s the same.

    Well done. Very impressive…and I don’t even like Anime.

  • http://www.animationfestival.ca J. Zaroski

    It definitely has that “Mind Game” feel, however the 3D adds so much more visual depth that I felt Mind Game sometimes lacked. I felt like this was able to accurately reproduce the sensation of falling/flying that happens in dreams. Seeing that whole expansive landscape while everything rushes by so fast… the execution is breathtaking.

  • http://www.mooseheartjones.com Neil Graf

    I like that this is the first time I’ve seen the fluid action-oriented animation you typically see from Gobelins students coming from a Japanese animator. Yeah, you see it with more choppy timing in the pro anime stuff, but this guy is borrowing from another region to enhance his work, and it came out great. Lets all learn from and enhance each-others’ work like these kids are doing.

  • DMG

    @Neil Graf

    Borrowing from another region? Fluid animation has been done before in Japan. The days of Tokyo Movie Shinsha doing cartoons in the 80s and 90s for example.

    Usually the budget and time dictate the quality and fluidity of Japanese animation and here’s a hint: You’re looking the wrong way if you expect this quality in a TV series.

  • andrew osmond

    Re Patrice’s question, Mind Game is at least partly about finding one’s purpose and self-worth… but mainly about animators going wild.

    btw, there was a very good fusion between French and Japanese styles a few years ago – namely the TV series Oban Star Racers, which involved some Goeblins graduates. Lots of zooming 3D animation, as you can see in the opening credits.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TIKQBNlwhHA

  • http://hedgehog-rover.deviantart.com Martin Juneau

    It’s a very amazing short. Very well timed and the animation and girl poses is outstanding. If only Animations can be like that today, it will be awesome and giving chance to new animators.

  • Dave

    I love it! Crazy well done!!!

  • King Nope

    “The film’s sound track is a bit annoying”
    Excuse me?

  • Mesterius

    This made my day :D Very funny, and beautiful animation of both the girl and her surroundings.

  • http://kirbydream.com/ Leirin

    It wasn’t bad by any means, and quite an achievement for a single individual, one only of 21 years to be specific — but can we PLEASE not have all these generic anime cliches flung into a few-minutes production? I think it could do without all the underwear, too. Unlike Kiki’s Delivery Service, in which case it actually made sense (and was more subtle), this was just full of it to please the fetishist otakus over there. Yuck.

    I will praise it though, for the high-speed tension and incredible backgrounds. It’s over the top, yes, but it still has that sensation of… falling.

  • http://grahaeme.blogspot.com grahaeme

    thats fantastic.

    reminds me of the gobelins film La grande arche

    http://www.gobelins.fr/galerie/animation/gen2007-01-Arche.htm

  • bluecat

    “but can we PLEASE not have all these generic anime cliches flung into a few-minutes production? I think it could do without all the underwear, too.”

    The filmmaker is quite aware of the conventions he is throwing into this film, which is a sort of celebration of those conventions (yes, even the panty shots). Every animation culture has its own set of tendencies and cliches. Just because we can spot them does not make them bad. What may seem annoying and overdone to you might seem nostalgic, comforting and familiar to someone from that culture.

    Of course none of this invalidates your opinion either : )

    In any case, I agree that it’s a very impressive piece, especially for a student!

  • http://disneymadeinbrazil.blogspot.com/ Fernando Ventura

    Yeah! Instead of showing her panties I think she should fall a waterfall! C’mon Disney! Sign with this guy, put off the executives from the old animation building and let him do what he wants with the mouse, the duck, Goofy, Scrooge and José Carioca!