Hadashi no Gen 2 (Barefoot Gen 2) Reviews
Taking place three years after the fateful bombing, the film follows Gen as he bonds with a group of orphans while still dealing the lingering effects of the bombings aftermath. Not only does it show the lingering effects of the bombs damage but the long-term effects on the lives of the Hiroshima population. Hiroshima still remains a desolate desert-like landscape but the film shows the slow signs of recovery throughout. One of the most prominent theme of the film is moving on but never forgetting the past. This theme is displayed masterfully throughout by portraying the still visible reminders of that fateful day on August 6th 1945.
One of the most biggest improvements this film has over it's predecessor is the animation. Released three years after the first film, the animation is a lot more crisp and clean. Plus the story is more smooth than the original, with scenes seeming less episodic in nature than the first.
The story told in the sequel offers a meaningful continuation of the first film, showing Gen's hardships in earning daily food to keep his family alive while his mother begins to slowly succumb to radiation poisoning. 'Barefoot Gen 2' pulls it's own set of emotional punches but doesn't nearly reach the emotional heights of the first film.
Watching the original 'Barefoot Gen' is strongly advised since the story builds upon the events of the first.
A high quality sequel that makes for a great companion to the original.
I liked this sequel. Whilst it doesn't hit the emotions of the first movie it was better than what I expected so I definitely recommend it. It is still heartbreaking at times but thankfully there's a glimmer of hope at the end.
I liked Barefoot Gen2 better. FYI, there was more plot and narrative to 2, you got see Hiroshima trying to rebuild itself after the devastation of of the atomic bomb attack, three years after the events in the first movie. For example, Gen and Ryuta are going back to school as one would expect for normal children, except their circumstances are far, far from normal. The death of Kimmie, sorry that's a spoiler, is a small scale depiction that radiation exposure has very long term effects resulting in mortality.
To follow up on my first review, powerful illustration of the devastation of war, based on Nakazawa's actual eyewitness.
Personal enjoyment: 6/10
Actual quality as a film: 7/10