Toronto's Japanese Animation Club

There are a number of anime movie weeks out there. For example there are some animation clubs similar to the “book of the month” club that send out a different anime movie every week. Some of these are also available online.

The SyFy or Scifi Channel, a popular cable TV channel in the US that primarily shows science fiction and fantasy programs does have Animonday which is a weekly Japanese animated feature. This is often shown on Tuesday or Monday later in the night. The selection of the films shown is somewhat cheap and not very discriminating. The films shown seem to be picked for their corny content as much as anything else.

The Cartoon Network also shows some anime movie features as part of its programming. These are usually shown later at night often on Saturday night and are interspaced with American feature length animated productions. These include some of the longer direct to video efforts being put out by US comic book publishers DC and Marvel that usually focus on adaptations of popular superhero comics.

Some of the popular anime websites also review a movie every week. An example of this is JFEFusion which tries to introduce readers to some of the more quality products of Japanese cinema. There are also some attempts to get the fans of anime TV interested in more traditional Japanese animated cinema.

Anime Movie Week Elsewhere

An anime of the week club is a good way to experience anime and to find products that might be ignored. Many people in the US dismiss the whole art form as mindless cartoons. Or simply find it confusing. Although I imagine the Simpsons and South Park must be completely confusing to non Americans.

The British website movie week makes an anime film available as streaming video every week as well. Interestingly enough it lists John Cameron’s live action/CG mix Avatar as anime. Although Avatar’s plot line appears to be derived from 1970s and 80s British science fiction shows like Doctor Who and Blake’s Seven.

These “movie of the week” features are a great way to catch up on a variety of different features. In particular they are a good way to experience top directors’ whose work is normally only seen at art house movie theaters or on direct to video in the USA.

Movie of the Week in Streaming Video

Another big advantage to the movie of the week features is that they are available in streaming video. This means that nobody has to wait until something comes out on DVD (if it ever does) to see it.

One problem is that not all of these appear to be updated all the time but when they are it can be a lot of fun. Especially to hard core anime fans and those getting bored with their favorite series. Some of the sites also feature fan forums which can help viewers find new treasures to watch.

Something to remember is that streaming video is still developing. Getting it to work on most late model computers is fairly easy but getting it to work on TV sets can be a little hard. Devices like Apple TV and Hulu are making this a lot easier but internet hookups are still limited in a lot of areas.

The big video websites such as Netflix now have a fairly good selection of anime. Something to remember is that their selections are still a lot better in DVD than in streaming but that’s changing too. This means it could soon be fairly easy for almost anybody to organize his or her own anime movie week.