Sunday, June 16, 2013

Library Wars

Toshokan Sensō (図書館戦争 / Library War) first came out as a light novel series (written by Hiro Arikawa and published by MediaWorks in 2006-07; translated in french by Glénat in their Roman Manga collection). It was then adapted into a manga series by Kiiro Yumi (serialized in Hakusensha's LaLa magazine since 2007, translated in English by Viz Media and in French by Glénat). Both novel and manga series are available in french from the Montreal libraries network. I will definitely add those to my reading list since I work in a library and find the concept totally hilarious! However, as it is often the case in Japan, it was later adapted into a 12-episode animated series (directed by Takayuki Hamana and produced by Production I.G, it aired in 2008 on Fuji TV's Noitamina segment) before being made into a live-action movie directed by Shinsuke Sato in April 2013. [See AsianWiki for more details on the movie]

In 2019, the Japanese government (following a trend that we start seeing today in many developed societies) pass a very strong censorship law in order to protect the country but it has the adverse effect of dangerously diminishing the freedom of expression. An armed force is created to search and eliminate any documents that contravene the law. However, libraries in Japan have their own law that gives them freedom in collecting and offering their materials, guaranteeing privacy to their users and categorically opposing any type of censorship (it's based on the Statement on Intellectual Freedom in Libraries, a real law passed in 1954 and amended in 1979). Therefore, an armed force is created to protect libraries against such censorship. The story follows Iku Kasahara, a young woman who had always dreamed to join the Library Defense Force, as she becomes a recruit and discovers all the challenges of a paramilitary life.

Yesterday, we've learned from Anime News Network that “Montreal's Fantasia International Film Festival will screen the Canadian premiere of the live-action Library Wars film this summer”. Fantasia's scheduling is yet to be announced.

In the meantimes, you can have a quick look on the movie's trailer Dailymotion:

Library Wars Official Trailer (2013) - Sato... by Filmclips

Update: Now you can also read my comment on the movie.

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