Cat Soup poster

Cat Soup

The main character, a cat named Nyatto, embarks upon a journey to save his sister's soul, which was ripped in two when Nyatto tried to save her from Death. She trails after him, brain-dead. They encounter many brilliant, mind-bending situations, beginning with a disturbing magic show. (Source: ANN)

Ranking 1920

User Count5457
Favorites Count85
Start Date21st Feb 2001
Next ReleaseInvalid date
Popularity Rank1920
Rating Rank3315
Age RatingR
Age Rating Guide17+ (violence & profanity)


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I hate shows that doesn't make any sense whatsoever. I never cared for trippy insanity such as those found in abundance in "FLCL" and "Dead Leaves"... and "Cat Soup" is about as trippy as they come - it makes me wonder what the hell the producers were smoking when they made this. There is no dialogue for starters, and after the first couple of minutes, there is barely any coherence either, just random scenes flashing across the screen. I just don't get it - what exactly is the point of this kind of anime? The art is ultra simplistic, the story is non-existent, and to say the characters are zero dimensional would be flattering to the extreme. If it's suppose to be entertaining, then it failed as I found it intensely boring despite its short length. If it's supposed to be funny, well, apart from one scene that appear to be some whacky, gruesome parody of a magic show, I didn't find the anime amusing in the slightest. If you like psychedelic anime, then this is one for you. Otherwise, you'll want to give this piece of crap a \*very\* wide berth.

Cat Soup, where to begin... This bit of animation is hard to review. Why, you ask? Because it is art. And such as is the nature of art, it is open to interpretation. There is no doubt that some will abhor this; this is not anime for lovers of cliched romance or hyperactive action. This is anime for those who can approach a piece of animation with an open mind. And an open mind is something that this anime requires. Story: This anime follows a young kitten named Nyatto as he goes on a journey to bring his older sister Nyako from Ksitigarbha's grasp. That is the basic plot, and that is what I will tell, as it is up to the viewer to interpret the utter madness that ensues within the story. Animation: Cat Soup was animated by the glorious people of J.C. Staff, which, among being responsible for other gems and overly plentiful fanservice shows, was the studio behind Excel Saga. That should tell you what to expect from the movie, however that is irrelevant when the animation values come in. The animation follows the deceptively simple style of the manga artist Nekojiru, as the movie was adapted from her work. As a note of reference, Nekojiru debuted in the (in)famous and highly influential underground manga anthology Garo, which can be known for housing such manga artists as, say, Seiichi Hayashi and Yoshihiro Tatsumi. That note aside, the animation follows Nekojiru's style to a tee, from the (again) deceptively childlike character designs to the simple background designs. The animation is fluid and up to par if not over with the standards of an OVA from the time. This was released in the February of 2001, so in comparison to other works at the time, the animation is excellent to say the least. And when factoring in the handling of the surrealist scenes such as the circus, it is downright impressive. Sound: The one thing I will say about the sound: it knows where and when to play. Now, with that said, it isn't anything special. It isn't something you would go out of your way to listen to. And it isn't particularly memorable. It plays out the childish atmosphere, and that adds to the surreal experience of the film. Characters: As this is an adaptation of one of Nekojiru's short stories, characters are hardly developed. But is that a bad thing? In a traditional piece of anime with an overarching plot that exists to move from point A to point B, that would be a yes. It would be a definite yes. But this is an experimental anime that adapts from its source material. The characters are there to tell the story. To allow the experience to begin. There is hardly any dialogue in this anime, and there is a reason to that. Characters take a backseat to the story as they are simply a means of progression. Enjoyment: Well, well, well... this was an experience. Reminiscent of an acid trip fresh after smoking some mushrooms, this anime is psychedelic to the extreme. And the use of the psychedelic nature helped blend the fantastical plot with the surrealist humor. As I personally love off-beat/black humor, the humor in this was on par to my taste. And since the enjoyment is personal, allow me to say this: I absolutely loved this. Overall: This is an experience. It takes an open mind and a sense of the surreal. And I cannot recommend this enough. This should be experienced by anyone who is a fan of experimental animation (a la Don Hetzfeldt and some of Studio 4°C's work) or anyone interested in the strange side of anime. 

Cat Soup is one in the list of anime that don't advertise themselves as what they truly are. Others that could be put alongside it are Neon Genesis Evangelion, Madoka Magica, and Alien Nine. Cat Soup presents itself similarly to other shows for young children, featuring cute-looking creatures as the main cast. These shows tend to feature some imaginative events and a journey of some kind, and both of those are still present in Cat Soup. However, Cat Soup should in no way be regarded as a children's show and is, in reality, dark and likely meaningful in its presentation. Cat Soup can also be seen simply as an experience to those who cringe at the idea of interpreting a story or play. However, for those that love a vague experience that can be attached with personal meaning, do not pass up Cat Soup. Cat Soup is limited to just over thirty minutes. Surprisingly though, Cat Soup is one of the most visually imaginative pieces I've come across. The OVA itself has a good budget and that shows in the very intriguing animation, but also notably shows in the lacking sense in the sometimes simplistic art-style it carries. The intriguing part, however, comes with the direction, which is phenomenal and one of the best I've seen in anime. The direction as a whole is wonderful, but the animation direction, by Masaaki Yuasa, is where the primary medal of achievement should be awarded. For those who are very knowledgeable on this man, it may not come to a surprise that Cat Soup looks wonderful from previously watching his other assisted material, such as: Genius Party, Kaiba, Mind Game, and Tatami Galaxy. Every moment is interesting and, within minutes, the randomness and imaginative art will likely pull in all attention. Cat Soup is an art house and that art, while seemingly random, can likely be inserted with meaning. Before moving past budget, the sound of Cat Soup should also be mentioned. Cat Soup has a stylish soundtrack, but not essentially a magnificent soundtrack. The music plays alongside the art very well, but it might not be the type of soundtrack that one would listen to on their spare time. The music involves a lot of piano and electronic symphonies, and greatly assists the atmosphere. The music creates a feeling of light caution as though anything could happen at any moment, as the music consistently sounds as if it will wobble off the record-player's tone arm. The sound effects itself are flawless and never create a feeling of a lacking atmosphere. The atmosphere of Cat Soup is vibrant at any and every moment, while still keeping the feel of a child's cartoon at many times. The characters of Cat Soup feature many imaginative, and randomly presented, creatures with some inclusions of humans as well. The main characters consist of two sibling cats, the story generally being of them going to the store to get some curry for their family to eat for dinner. Whether that is actually the story at hand, however, is debatable and up to interpretation. Cat Soup is an experience. These characters don't always act consistent or rationally and will many times carry out what feels like forced actions that you wouldn't have guessed they would do from what you previously examined. However, as the randomness builds up, this all feels justified by the main goal emanating out of Cat Soup being the interpretive experience. The story could just involve a paranoid child or an imaginative kid, or it could be something far more complex. On my side of things, I left the experience feeling that it was an actual deconstruction of a child's cartoon, focusing on the concept of control over the cast to make the viewers entertained. This could also be seen related to religion, within the OVA, as imagery of devastating and important world events rush by as a God-like figure flies through it all with the simple intent of trying to reach for his fallen melon-slice. That is an example of the possible depth of Cat Soup. Cat Soup focuses on the experience and to enjoy it one must be open to very strange imagery that is also consistently dark, in a grim manner. Cat Soup, again, isn't a child's anime and is filled with blood and simplistic gore. The events that pass in the OVA will feel random, for the most part, and these random events will basically always turn themselves onto a darker path. The story is these events and trying to understand what they all mean and what might not actually be happening. Cat Soup is relatable to Evangelion for a reason, not only in the concept of them being possible "deconstructions" of their genre-types. Cat Soup can likely be disturbing to many viewers and I would warn this to someone before recommending it to them. A viewer has to understand what an experience viewing is before dropping into this piece and that idea will sometimes just never stick with some people. If that's the case, than Cat Soup may not be the best viewing of choice. Cat Soup is a short and powerful OVA with some of the most imaginative visuals around. The story and characters are inconsistent, in a literal context, and return this show to the label of being an "experience". There are many anime and films that involve complex rational ideas to make themselves viewed as great, but many people also see shows and films that take the irrational and make it meaningful and imaginative as being great. Not everyone feels this way about visual media in general, not only in the anime community, and this difference should be noted when a high acclaim is given to such a strange OVA as this. If one found meaning in what can be considered "deconstruction" series, than they will likely find some enjoyment out of this if the genre itself wasn't leading their interest the most, in the other "deconstructions", but the actual/possible depth. I won't say Cat Soup is, without a doubt, a meaningful experience, but it's a visually intriguing experience and a greatly imaginative one. For that reason, I recommend Cat Soup to those who I deemed as compatible with this dish.

I don't know where to start. It made no sense at all.  The only reason why anybody would watch this is because it's amount of absurdity it contains.  It's good though so watch it now. 

Nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnngggggggggggg. WTF is all that can really be said about this, errr, thing. It hardly constitutes Anime it's that crazy.  Does anyone know a mental health doctor who could help with my new found fear of strangers and cats. 

Awesome mind fuck

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