Le Portrait de Petit Cossette

Discussion in 'Specific Anime Discussion' started by ZetsubouKaiji, May 16, 2020.

  1. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Forum Moderator Database Moderator

  2. Taek

    Taek Well-Known Member

    Posted by Taek on May 16, 2020
    Someone doing.a buddy group for this?
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  3. Gens

    Gens Database Moderator

    Posted by Gens on May 16, 2020
    Yep, ZK is doing this between the 23-25th of May. The OVA is quite short at 3 episodes too and it's one of Akiyuki Shinbo's earliest directed works. You should hop in for some goth horror!
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  4. Taek

    Taek Well-Known Member

    Posted by Taek on May 17, 2020
    Definitely going to join this then!
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  5. g3data

    g3data Well-Known Member

    Posted by g3data on May 17, 2020
    Sounds fancy
  6. BurntJelly

    BurntJelly Well-Known Member

    As I prepare for my 5th time watching... I am left to wonder: How is this not tagged romance?
    This is psychological romantic horror. It is very much and absolutely romance.
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  7. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Forum Moderator Database Moderator

    I can fix the tags as we're watching it. They look fairly thin.
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  8. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Forum Moderator Database Moderator

    This show isn't subtle about what it's going for.


    I forgot how much CG this show uses. It's still in the early days of Japan using the technology, but Shibo deploys it well here. He uses it mostly for surreal backgrounds and uncanny objects instead of trying to render people or movements that would just look like crap. The CG allows for a lot of movement and grand sweeping shots of impossible vistas. It adds to the overall frenetic feeling of the first episode.

    I'll write more later on the first episode, but overall, I found it to be even better than I remember.
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  9. BurntJelly

    BurntJelly Well-Known Member

    I didn't realize the HD version was an "enhanced" upscale. That's actually pretty nice looking.

    So anyways... It's finally dark out so now it's time to watch this. Projector on! Volume up! Oh yes!
    5.0/5 Masterpiece.
    This used to be the #1 best anime ever made... then Madoka came along. (if anyone didn't notice, same director, same music composer)
    Watch 5 begin!

    The opening line tells you everything you need to know about this anime.

    The OP gives me chills.
    Ok, the entire soundtrack does.

    I'm scared of wine glasses now.
    Best scene! The most dramatic cup I've ever seen!
    You know how there are anime figurines?... I want a wine glass like that. And I won't let anyone else touch it either.

    (intently watches episode)

    I say this every time I finish watching this: This episode is directed like a nightmare. Literally. And it's wonderful.

    I love how this leaves off with that feeling... you know the one: What is going on?... and what did I just watch?

    Love it!
    Beyond perfect.
    15/10 episode. Shinbo's directing style is perfect for this kind of thing.
    20/10 soundtrack. Yuki Kajiura + Shinbo knowing how to use it properly, so good.
    It's both beautiful and terrifying.
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  10. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Forum Moderator Database Moderator

    So much this. One thing that struck me while watching the first episode was just how cinematic it was compared to most other anime. The editing is fast and snappy always cutting to something new or adding some effect. There are some great transition shots in the episode. The way it's edited Shinbo never lets the audience get comfortable in any given scene. Familiarity and comfort are the antithesis of horror.

    As expected of Shinbo there's a lot of symbolism and imagery used in the episode. In particular I liked the red light flashing right before Eiri drank the blood from the cup and became cursed. All of the obvious Jesus on the cross imagery was eerie. There is not good ending waiting for Eiri. He's been caught up in the supernatural and it's already changed him into something else.

    The use of color is lovely. A lot of horror falls into the trap of being dark or just being drab looking. For some this works to set the tone. Cossette though is able use vibrant colors to both look beautiful, but also add to the feeling of being disoriented. The stained glass is a Gothic classic.

    The story itself is rather straightforward ghost stuff. Eiri isn't the most likable guy. I'm not sure why he has a little harem. When we meet him he's already caught in the cup's grip, though. He's already started an obsession that's taken him apart from the world he's know which is why he seems disconnected from the people around him. All he can think about is the mysterious girl trapped in the wine glass.

    Spirits being caught in objects is an old idea. I like how this episode gives it some extra stakes by making Eiri the reincarnation of the person that trapped the spirits when he murdered Cossette.
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  11. Gens

    Gens Database Moderator


    The visuals are pretty arresting and the best thing about it. Shinbou puts his talents on horror to great effect and it's the only real horror example I can think of from him. If you ever wondered what it'd be like if Shaft did a horror anime, this is it. His surrealist style really suits it and I wish he did more horror anime. It boils down to, man wants to fuck loli pretty bad. Stories of mad obsession are a common horror staple. The symbolism overload thrown at you is great for atmosphere. This is a very atmospheric focused piece honestly. Shinbou sure knows how to make STYLISH looking blood splatter.

    Solid first episode.
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    Last edited: May 24, 2020 at 1:41 AM
  12. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Forum Moderator Database Moderator

    Episode 2:

    Man, Eiri really needs to let go of the lolita and stick with his harem of hot milfy looking women.
    It's so unusual to have this many adult looking women in an anime, but it's been made that way as an obvious juxtaposition to Cossette. The anime is about the dangers of obsessive love that puts someone on a pedestal never wanting them to change or grow.

    Cossette was controlled by Marcello's obsessive desire to love her as a perfect child. In this episode Cossette tries to control Eiri in the same way that she was controlled. She comes across as quite sinister at times. She keeps trying to stop Eiri from searching for answers that would help him understand his situation. She just wants his pure love so that she can free the souls of the cursed objects. However, she's slowly forced to open up more and more as she sees Eiri's devotion to her. It's a selfless devotion that doesn't ask for anything in return unlike her relationship with Marcello. She can't help but feel something for Eiri as he suffers for her sake. At the end we see her portrait start to smile. It's both sinister and a little heart warming as Cossette realizes she is finally loved by someone.

    This episode is slower paced than the first one. The editing has calmed down a bit. The A+ soundtrack is still there to keep the atmosphere going while more story development happens on screen. Some of the dialogue this episode was fantastic.


    Pretty great description of how a toxic relation can reel someone in. It's not until it's too late that you realize how dehumanizing the relationship actually is.

    About halfway through the episode kind of goes nuts with the battles and imagery. It's all solid horror stuff, but it's the pathos of Cossette's often poetic dialogue as well Eiri's more simple devotion that grounds it into something more than artistic non-sense and symbolism. It all operates on a sort of nightmare logic where not everything is meant to be taken literally. Yet, it works so well because there are some relateable emotions to back it up.
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  13. BurntJelly

    BurntJelly Well-Known Member

    Ok, we get it, Cossette is a cutie...


    I've now watched this 5 times and I still barely understand what is going on in this episode.

    Ok... so the "tone" of this one is very different from the first. It's not quite the "nightmare" that it was before... it's something different now. I don't know what it is. I just know it's different. I can't quite put my finger on it... "uncertainty"? "doubt"?
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  14. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Forum Moderator Database Moderator

    Episode 3:

    Ah, things make a lot more sense when it's revealed there are two different Cossettes. The real Cossette is the one giving the heart rending narration as she realizes how much she has hurt Eiri by using him to take out the pain and rage of the cursed objects. The second Cossette is a fake. She's the soul of the portraits that Marcello painted. Like Marcello's love she's twisted and obsessed. She's the one with the sinister presence that threw me off in the second episode. She wants to trap Eiri to paint her forever. Eiri is able to see right through her though because she's just too perfect. Marcello loved an idealized version of Cossette and his portraits while beautiful could never be human because they reflected no flaws.

    Despite the Gothic atmosphere and a general unsettling feeling this episode was more like waking from a nightmare than falling into one. Cossette and Eiri prove that they understand each other and are a good match for each other. Their love isn't meant to be in its current form, but the ending suggests they may have something of the future together anyway.

    It's a lovely episode and a nice ending to the series.

    If anything this was even better on a rewatch. The OVA might be a bit too abstract for some, but I like the symbolism heavy, distorted approach this takes to storytelling. It suits the horror tone and the story is still able to come together in the end. 8 out of 10
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  15. Gens

    Gens Database Moderator


    Can't think of anything more hardcore guys, than painting with ur own BLOOOOOOooooooOOOOOOOood. It's true what they say, true beauty is on the inside, hur hur hur. At it's heart, the story is a pretty simple romantic tale honestly, it's just the execution in conveying those emotions is so spot on. I don't think much of the symbolism is meant to be looked at too deeply either honestly but to mainly set the mood. The ending's pretty great and quite sweet in a way that warms your heart. It has some pretty good catharsis.

    On another note, I don't find hyper realistic art to be particularly interesting. It requires technical skill sure and talent, but it just really lacks creativity and soul to me. It's why I usually gravitate to video games for instance with more cartoony and exaggerated styles because it feels more original. So you could say this is making a statement about originality as well.

    I will give it a 8/10 spoopy lolis out of 10. A really damn good re-watch.
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  16. BurntJelly

    BurntJelly Well-Known Member

    Again a slight tone shift.
    We begin with panic and fear. And yes, dolls are always creepy once you throw in some blood and disfigurement.

    Then, what?!... a trippy beautiful music video.


    When it comes down to it, this is just a beautifully surrealized rendition of the modern day waifu debate: 3d vs 2d
    Cossette is not the "real" Cossette. She is the painting... free of blemish and imperfection. She is perfect. But she is not real.
    Cossette sleeping in a pink dress. -> Shoko sleeping in a pink dress. (this is super subtle, I never figured this out on my own)

    This anime is the pinnacle of art. I love this kind of thing. It's absolutely beautiful. The most beautiful anime I have ever experienced.
    5.0/5 Masterpiece. 2nd best anime ever made.
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  17. Taek

    Taek Well-Known Member

    Episode 1

    I'm not late, you guys were early...

    Never fall in love with an iridescent wine glass.

    The plot is straight out of M R James, but the execution is pure gothic surrealist nightmare. If I could have changed anything, I would have had Eiri transform into a goatman to add in some pagan-christian mysticism too.

    Really loved the editing and the visuals, it keeps you constantly on your toes because it likes to jump from one cut to the next and never let you settle in, as said otherwise, the use of colour is also great, going for some stained glass brightness instead of just going all black and purple on us.

    A good start!
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  18. g3data

    g3data Well-Known Member

    I didn't really enjoy watching this all too much at first since I don't really really do all that well with these hoity toity SHAFT productions along with mysterybait but I was won over by the time episode 3 rolled by. I think having contextual knowledge of where the story might be going would help because a lot of the dialogue early on just sounded like pretty noise to me. I still don't particularly care for the signature visual stylewstyle not being applied to comedy either.

    When I'm trying to get into a story, my immediate priority isn't to dissect the boatload of imagery thrown my way, but to figure out who the people I'm watching are and why I should care. We got there eventually, but the journey just isn't my speed.
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