And Just Like That, Now I’m Hooked On ‘Black Butler’!
Being perfectly honest…I knew nothing about ‘Black Butler‘ going into the newest film. It’s recommended to me countless times as I’ve mentioned I enjoy horror anime but I’ve always said “eventually”. Once ‘Black Butler: Book of Atlantic‘ arrived for review, that day finally happened. After watching the film, I regret waiting this long!
‘Black Butler‘ is a long-running anime series, based on a manga. ‘Book of Atlantic‘ is an adaptation of the sixth arc in series. The film follows Earl Ciel Phantomhive and his servants, Sebastian Michaelis and Snake, as they board a luxury cruise ship to investigate illegal human experimentation. It’s said that the Aurora Society is using humans purchased through human trafficking as practice to revive the dead. Aurora Society hosts a demonstration on the ship that turns deadly when the revived humans become monsters.
“We No Longer Have To Live With The Shadow Of Death Looming Over Us”
To sum up ‘Black Butler: Book of Atlantic‘, it’s a gothic horror for a new generation. While it’s fast paced and bloody like a modern film, there’s an atmosphere that is classic gothic filmmaking like a Hammer Horror production. That’s one of the things that caught my eye. It’s edgy and fresh but still captures some old-school magic. Other than homaging horror, it also has a serious Sherlock Holmes vibe! The mystery investigation aspect of the film is heavy and plays well with horror. Major crossover appeal with this going beyond anime fans and grabbing those blood-thirsty horror fans!
Since I wasn’t familiar with this franchise before, the visuals are the first thing that stands out. Unlike most horror, ‘Black Butler: Book of Atlantic‘ uses a lot of light and doesn’t hide any of the scares. All the Japanese-style spray blood is right in your face and the creatures don’t fall into the shadows. But it isn’t just the color palette that is great, the camera work is top-notch. Wonderful to see cinematic shots in an anime film. Little details like snap zooms & tracking shots make this feel more like a movie and not just animation.
Another thing that sticks out as an outsider is the eccentric characters. It’s jarring jumping into the franchise not knowing all the idiosyncrasies of everyone. Not saying that characters and their quirks are bad but the film doesn’t spend any time explaining who and what people are. Thankfully, all the characters are so fun that you accept the mayhem. Everyone is bold and feel unique to this universe. Ciel Phantomhive is one of the intriguing leads in an anime and actually feels like a layered hero. Didn’t see enough of Grell Sutcliff and that wonderful chainsaw so hope there’s more in the show.
After completing ‘Black Butler: Book of Atlantic‘, there’s a need for more from this franchise. The film works as a stand-alone project but I’m curious to see how this connects to the bigger picture. Rarely does something for hardcore fans attract new viewers but that shows the power of this film.
Check this out in theaters on June 12th (subtitled) and June 14th (dubbed), 2017. For more info and to buy tickets, check out Funimation’s official movie page here.
“All aboard to the next great adventure for Ciel and his demonic butler, Sebastian! After hearing rumors of a peculiar society bringing people back from the dead, the two board the luxury liner Campania on her maiden voyage to investigate. Incognito amongst the mysterious Aurora Society, they find familiar faces and a sight they can’t believe—a woman raised from the dead! But surprise quickly turns to dread when the shambling corpse attacks.
With more questions than answers, Ciel and Sebastian are up against not just one flesh-hungry corpse, but hundreds. Worse yet, the flamboyant Reaper Grell and his new partner, Ronald Knox, stand in their way. Time is running out to solve this mystery, and if the demonic duo doesn’t act fast, they’ll be treading some seriously rough waters. Who could be behind this daring necromancy—and are they ready to find out?”
What do you think of my review? Will you see ‘Black Butler: Book of Atlantic‘?
Let me know in the comments!