Sakasama no Patema Review — C+

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A girl lives life upside down.

It was good, but— it just felt too tame. This is supposed to be a movie about changing your perspective, about having the courage to look at things in a different way. Yet— that never happens. The main guy just confirms his previous beliefs. He supposedly changes when he switches to living upside-down, because now he understands Patema better. But I don’t see it. He understands she doesn’t want to fall to her death in a bottomless chasm— but I’m pretty sure he understood that before. Likewise, Patema doesn’t have much to change her perspective about— the movie suggests she overcomes her fear of falling to her death, but in my opinion, that’s probably a healthy fear to have.

The villain never changes. The students at the school never change. The underground people never change, aside from becoming a bit more trusting as they get to know people. The one person who does change his perspective is the special ops guy. But this guy’s an afterthought. Plus, his change doesn’t have much to do with most of the action happening in the movie. He just kind of realizes on his own that killing people is probably bad. Great work dude, have a tootsie pop.

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They have another half-assed attempt at switching perspectives, by calling the people  who live upside down “inverted”, while pointing out that it’s actually the right-side-up people living in an evil dictatorship who are inverted. Yeah, props to you, Sakasama no Patema, for boldly calling out lolicon Hitler like no one has ever done before.

For a movie that’s supposedly about the virtues of seeing things from different perspective, it’s amazing how Sakasema no Patema fails to challenge the audience’s perspective in the slightest.

  • Storytelling – C – Meh. It was okay.
  • Voice – C – Thematically very disappointing, see above.
  • Characters – C – Lame couple.
  • Attention Grab – B – It’s a movie, if it can’t keep my attention, there are serious problems.
  • Production – B – Looks good, especially the flying scenes.
  • Overall – B-

Recommendations – Nagi no Asakura, Laputa (now that I think about it, Patema is essentially a pale imitation of Laputa)

4 thoughts on “Sakasama no Patema Review — C+

  1. Yeah, I found this movie to be just… stupid. The core idea is nice and makes for some great visual tricks, but the rest just isn’t there. There’s not much world building or consistent rules for how things work in this world (for example, subterranean people seem to own tools that follow THEIR sense of gravity. But I’d imagine they’re creating them out of materials they mine out of the same bedrock as everyone. What decides their gravity?). The villain is a joke, as subtle as that fairy king baddie from SAO. The reasons for their hate of the inverted a silly strawman of real religious/racial discrimination (they even KNEW they were that way because of an accident! But still, SINNERS). The entire thing about perspective nonsensical, as if being freaking scared of falling into an infinite nothingness beneath your feet isn’t a perfectly normal reaction. Of all things… this was like saying that in order to achieve friendship and understanding between people who are allergic to nuts and people who are not the former need to stop fearing nuts. It just doesn’t make the slightest lick of sense.

    So yeah, it was pretty to look at, but if it was me I wouldn’t have been even as generous as you’ve been in grading it.

  2. Was it supposed to be about inverting prospectives?
    I enjoyed the visual style, and the story is very classic, solid enough to work for the length of the movie I guess. Not very deep or anything, but still, enjoyable.

  3. I think it deserves a better grade for its originality. A “C” sounds to me always like; “Nah.. Not gonna watch this”, but the anime is actually worth the time

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