December 7, 2022

Entertaining Movies

Entertaining Movies

Oni: Thunder God’s Tale Review 2022 Tv Show Series Season Cast Crew

Oni: Thunder God's Tale

Oni: Thunder God’s Tale Review 2022 Tv Show Series Season Cast Crew

Oni: Thunder God’s Tale — coming to Netflix Oct. 21 — is equal measures adorable and impressive, a beautifully crafted story that blends colorful characters and a fantastical story with enough grounded emotional weight to make an impression. Created with a unique blend of stop-motion and CGI animation that works to give the series a soft touch, the four-episode series plays with some very well-executed twists and turns without losing sight of the main characters that drive it. Sweet-natured and quietly complex in all the right ways, Oni: Thunder God’s Tale is exactly the kind of unique animation streamers like Netflix have been — and need to continue — helping thrive.

The mini-series focuses on Onari (Momona Tamada), a young girl in a fantastical village of creatures inspired by Japanese folklore. One of the only students at the local school who hasn’t yet inherited any abilities from her dopey adorable father, Naridon (Craig Robinson), Onari is anxious to help defend the village from the coming Oni — a mysterious and deadly force threatening the woods. Despite the anxieties of her teacher Mr. Tengu (George Takei), Onari desperately wants to join the fight.

She gets the chance when she discovers her father is a powerful thunder god, and her uncle Putaro (Omar Miller) comes to bring Naridon back into the fight against the Oni. Onari’s attempts to harness that power creates a domino effect that reveals secrets about herself, Naridon’s past, and the Oni that are threatening the village. This sets Onari on a surprising quest that takes her far beyond the bridge into the Oni territory and reveals more about her.

In development since 2019, Oni: Thunder God’s Tale is the ambitious CGI/Stop-Motion hybrid courtesy of Tonko House. The effect is incredibly warm, transforming the small forest town into a lush and vivid setting. The soft, almost felt-like quality of the character animation translates into a softness that juxtaposes well against the more dramatic beats of the show’s second half. It also provides the animation with an almost jolty movement, at times, giving the movement a unique flavor. While the crossover between the CGI and the Stop-Motion may not necessarily be seamless, it’s incredibly effective in action scenes — especially as more elements come into play. It’s a success from an animation standpoint, instantly memorable and adorable.

The sweet story is brought to life by a strong voice cast, especially in the lead roles. Tamada gives Onari the right mix of childlike wonder along with a genuine emotional core to make her compelling. Archie Yates is also extremely fun as her best friend Kappa, playing the classic worry-wort archetype. The most impressive of the cast may be Robinson, who plays Noridon without any real dialogue — instead communicating through a series of starts and cries that convey a sweet-natured goof with the power to destroy mountains if he were so inclined.The four-episode mini-series proves to be the right size for the series, giving the cast of colorful oddballs room to endear themselves and help flesh out the story’s third-act twist. While the show’s beginning may be a bit slow, it’s bolstered by charming characters. Luckily, the series doesn’t lose sight of its cast, even as the tension ratchets up and the stakes become higher. While it’s clearly designed with young audiences in mind, the series’ dramatic arc will keep viewers of all ages engaged. Consistently impressive visually and with an incredibly sweet heart, Oni: Thunder God’s Tale is the perfect all-ages epic — especially for younger audiences — and is an impressive showing from an animation studio with a bright future.

Oni: Thunder God’s Tale Review 2022 Tv Show Series Season Cast Crew