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"Tamala 2010: A Punk Cat in Space" comes to American theaters

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The Japanese animated feature "Tamala 2010: A Punk Cat in Space", featuring what has been described as a parody of Hello Kitty as a chain-smoking, foul-mouthed hooker in a "Star Wars" universe, is starting a general U.S. theatrical art-theater release. It has already been playing at art theaters in cities like Los Angeles and Cleveland for the past year, so who knows what the difference is? Here is a review from "LA Weekly" magazine:

A wide-eyed, hypercute kitty astronaut dodges flying skulls in deep space while doing battle with a sinister commercial consortium, Catty and Co., that is reminiscent of the Tristero in Pynchon’s The Crying of Lot 49, down to its roots in a Renaissance postal service. Japanese art collective t.o.L. (Tree of Life) have taken the hipster kitsch of Hello Kitty to a delirious extreme in this animated feature, which bears as much resemblance to current anime as Stan Brakhage does to Vincente Minnelli. The animation is primitive, black-and-white 2-D that nods to both the stilted kinescopes of 1950s television and the conveyer-belt motion of early video games. Yet, sudden veers into darkly colored scenes of dense, skeletal architecture reveal a Matrix-like world beneath the surface, adding to an atmosphere of conspiracy and decay. The narrative thread is about as thin as Eraserhead’s, with whole sequences turning out to be dreams/hallucinations that take place while staring under a park bench. But the images — including a giant robotic Colonel Sanders with an ax in its head that walks the streets of Tokyo — reinforce every paranoid fantasy of a controlled future ever concocted. In Japanese, with wondrous English subtitles: “Later, you anaconda *****!” (Nuart; Fri.-Thurs., April 2-8) (Jon Strickland)

The film is being distributed in America by the American Cinematheque, 1800 North Highland Avenue, Suite 717, Hollywood, CA 90028, (323) 461-2020, If there are theaters in your city that show foreign art films, you might contact them to request "Tamala 2010" and refer them to the American Cinematheque.

For further information, see the surrealistic Tamala 2010 website which can take you all day to explore.


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About the author

Fred Pattenread storiescontact (login required)

a retired former librarian from North Hollywood, California, interested in general anthropomorphics