Typhoon Noruda

April 9, 202029/10081513 min
Alt. Title
Taifuu no Noruda
Release Date
June 5, 2015
Studio Colorido
27 min.
Overall Score
Rating Overview
Art Style
Animation Production
Rating Summary
Too time-constrained OVA that substitutes any natural plot progression for lackluster results, only redeeming quality is its less than thirty minutes.

Typhoon Noruda is a 2015 Drama, Science Fiction short film that was produced by Studio Colorido. While the studio hasn’t produced anything uber award-worthy this film is an interesting take on what resources a relatively new studio has. However, it is important to note that although the film is part of a “new” studio, it doesn’t give any studio an automatic free pass or a participation award for a piece of entertainment. This is naturally one of the worst things anyone could do to any piece of entertainment, especially when it costs the viewer unreturnable time spent with them.

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While Typhoon Noruda is short – just under thirty minutes – the story is a pretty interesting one. The film starts out with a group of students in Japan having to wait out an unexpected storm as it bears down on the tropical island. Azuma, a middle schooler who has been fighting with his best friend and teammate Saijo. After the fight, Azuma encounters a strange girl with a mysterious necklace. Suddenly he realizes she is in trouble and is somehow connected to the storm. As he tries to figure out who is she and also why she was in the middle of the storm? Can he be any help to her or just get killed in the process?

The one great facet of this film is that it takes a wonderful premise and creates an alluring narrative in such a short amount of time. When a story isn’t an adaptation from anything or even loosely based upon something it potentially makes the viewer have a more difficult time relating or even becoming submerged in the story. When the viewer is watching something that is classified as a film then they should be expected to be taken on some sort of journey, whether good or bad. Which this film does, but by the end of the story, the viewer may be questioning what they just watched. Not to say the story was terrible, or even bland, but the payoff of this film may leave some with a terrible feeling in their mouths.

Although, I will give this film great praise for not following into a huge cliché of space and aliens. While a film that does lean towards that wouldn’t be automatically bad but given that Studio Colorido hasn’t created any “big name” creations up to this point means they could’ve played that card. However, the film somewhat plays that card at the very end, but outside of that, it’s not that widely used. There aren’t any futuristic gadgets, nor did it have anything outside of reality. Which for the most part is a letdown, especially when the only aspect of this Sci-Fi anime being a slight nod to the cliché.

The first aspect of this film that is negatively interesting is that there are two main problems within the film that are part of each other. One is the physical, the best friends fighting and the other being emotional, the emotional resolution between the two. The latter is obviously an afterthought of the film which is disappointing. It’s understandable that hormonal teenagers fight with each other, but by the end, they’re back together with nothing happening between them. Unfortunately, this is a stab to the friendship aspect of the film but doesn’t totally eradicate the message from the film.

The art style of this film isn’t anything to get excited about but wasn’t a complete letdown. While the film’s art style is a very simplistic realism I can’t deny that it used this to its advantage. There are a few aspects of the film that are wonderfully made, then a majority being on par with the rest of the film. One instance the film does hit the nail on the head is at the beginning where they’re showing the island, absolutely beautiful. If they stuck with that it’d give the entire film a whole new meaning but unfortunately, they didn’t.

One aspect of this art style that didn’t sit right with this is that it didn’t flow well together, figuratively and literally. If a film is going to start out with colorful, bright and perhaps even sunshine days of happiness, then it should have the same effort of the opposite. Another aspect of this film is that with this type of simplicity it makes some character’s appearances look choppy. The film has a clear budget and spent it on areas they thought were better than others, but unfortunately, the ending product just gave the film a lackluster art style. Which makes it somewhat problematic to watch because it potentially gives the viewer the thought of “if they don’t care then why should I?”

The one clear part of this film that was not a huge let down was the animation and the entire production of the film. The animation is clean, and the production was crisp to the point that it was shocking. When that mixed with the colorful, happy-go-lucky setting the film shows in the beginning it becomes a potentially true work of art. When the film goes towards a slower or even everyday setting, that’s when the animation and production grind to a halt. Unfortunately, the animation can’t make anything great on its own, nor will holding an above-average production save it.

Outside of the beginning and end of the film, the animation is subpar. Albeit there were some decently intriguing parts of this film, mainly due to the mysterious girl but outside of that the honeymoon phase is over. The same with the production, adding a good song that’s being played during the credits doesn’t save the movie in any way shape or form. If the entirety of production is going to take the backseat then why should it be created?

Unfortunately, there are only three real characters in this film, but the only interesting one is Noruda, a character who has a very small amount of lines in the film. Which shows the lack of creativity of this film and is highly unfortunate mainly due to the story premise is interesting. When a film is relying on a character who doesn’t talk and is supposed to be “mysterious” is a pretty obvious cop-out to the viewer. The truly unfortunate aspect of the other two characters is that they were summed up in the story above. Nothing was added in the film of importance nor was it kept out of the writing.

With a heavy narrative-focused short film like this, there is just way too much story to fit in a thirty-minute timeslot. It harpers everything from the art style, animation, production, characters and even the viewer’s enjoyment of it. It’s a problem that never ends well and only leads to characters prematurely being developed which was a huge problem with this film. Another aspect that would turn anyone away from this is that the voice acting behind the characters just seemed like they needed the work. They didn’t have any emotion which potentially makes any viewer detached from this film.

Although the voice acting was subpar it was a nice surprise to have Luci Christian, the voice of Honey Sempai and young Kyuta, be the English voice actor of Noruda. The entertainment value of this anime is very low, but not so low its unwatchable. I’d probably not watch this again, but I might if there wasn’t anything else to watch. The main problem is that there is only a maximum of five minutes of greatness in this film, but the other twenty-two minutes it’s just bland, subpar, mediocre however you want to word it. So the only thing this film has going for it is that it’s ample enough where the viewer will be able to watch other anime and not feel like they wasted time.

Cody Senpai

Cody Senpai is the creator of BakaNow, an anime review website that specializes in spoiler-free reviews for everyone. He is an avid anime watcher who has traveled to Japan numerous times to not only experience the culture and history but also to build friendships with people through a common interest. He is an avid animation fanatic from birth and even went on to major in communication to help share the importance of the stories we love to watch and listen to. Cody lives in Denver, Colorado and loves to do anything adventurous.

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