With no speech, Ningyo relates the story of a boy who falls in love with a mermaid. Their love blossoms in wonderful places (and through amusing games), but when living in a world of prohibition, one can not daydream as he pleases: torture and brainwashing should teach the boy what reality is made of, and that does not include mermaids...
The short Broken Down Film is just that: broken. The film has aged poorly and the projector has trouble keeping the frame straight, but the protagonist is well aware of this. Exploiting these conditions the bumbling cowboy attempts to rescue a damsel in distress and win her heart.
In a futuristic world almost barren of life, mankind is confined to mechanized domed cities where A.I.’s control all aspects of life. In this world, humans are no longer born, they are manufactured in a production line; and alongside them live androids known as autoreivs. Within one of these domed sanctuaries named Romdeau lives Re-l Mayer, one of a few citizens who aren’t entirely prevented from thinking. Her grandfather's prominent position and the affection of the scientist Daedalus have left her more free will than is normally allowed, but Re-l has started to question the sanctity of the city and the citizens' perfect way of life. With mysterious beings known as proxies causing havoc and a man named Vincent causing great influence on her life, Re-l must travel outside of the city to find the answers she seeks and discover the mystery behind "the awakening".
If you liked the plot of Ningyo, you will probably like Ergo Proxy. It is much more complex and interesting. Although it doesn't involve mermaids, it also deals with people that are held under mind control, and the main character tries to escape from that brainwashing society and find the truth that is being hidden from the common citizen.
What if you could fly? Jumping by Osamu Tezuka lets us literally jump through time and space. Shot from a first person perspective with nothing but ambient noise as a soundtrack you are witness to a seamless journey across rural Japan, into the heart of modern Tokyo, and beyond, showing us a subtle study of modern life and the impact that progress has on us and our environment.
The memory works in mysterious ways. From stereotypes that help us to remember people, to what is left of the day we broke up, or even to what other creatures will remember of humans after our race is extinguished, the abstract comments of the narrator are illustrated in a literal way by the animation - resulting in holy toilet cities and other cyclopean creatures.
Life unfolds in the most unexpected places. Story of a Street Corner follows the bustling activities of a street corner, but not the ones you would expect. A hungry mouse, a moth desperately seeking the food caught in a spider’s web, and a love triangle unfolding between the posters lining the street are all depicted with an original musical score as the only sound.
Both Ningyo and Tales of a Street Corner are about an impossible romance in a world where daydreaming is out of the question. Though the stories are different, both are quite similar in the way they focus on the story and keep it as pure as possible, not bothering with amazing effects or implicit aspects.