Thursday, August 11, 2011

Elfen Lied Review

Sire and I just recently watched Elfen Lied, an anime series I would classify as horror while at times also having a very cutesy anime feel.  I had been wanting to see Elfen Lied for years now after hearing the theme song and seeing the beautiful yet graphic art from the series.  When I saw it was available to watch instantly on netflix I convinced Sire to watch it with me.  He is not as into anime as I am but he loves violent movies so that and the sexy naked girl with horns sucked him in right away.

Elfen Lied is based on a manga which I have not read but from what I understand the series is only somewhat loyal to that manga due to the fact that the manga was not complete at the time the anime was made.   Elfen Lied means Elf Song in German. I can only assume it is a reference to a music box melody that plays an important role in the story and is also beautiful by the way.  The character in the image is Lucy, she is the main character and is also a creature called a diclonius.  Basically a mutated human with special powers whose main purpose of existence is to destroy human kind.   Or so she believes, this is really left up for to debate if you ask me. 

The anime starts as Lucy escapes from a government research facility which she is being held in, slicing apart a lot of people with on the way.  She is shot in the head during the escape, loses her memory and is found by a couple of college students on the beach (who happen to be cousins that are in love with each other).  Lucy develops a sort of split personality.  The childlike personality she takes on while stricken by amnesia called Nyu supplies a lot of the cuteness and humor in the story.  In fact I was surprised how much there was to the story that was just sort of cute and not simply relying on the shock factor of the violence.  This is part of what makes the series so unique to me.

There are a lot of twists to the plot that leave you wondering throughout the anime. We could not stop watching it we were so hooked!  I spent most of the time desperately trying to figure out which diclonius was a certain researchers daughter. While there is no sex in the movie there is a lot of nudity and some briefly implied sexual themes. 

This anime is definitely not for someone that is easily bothered by violence.  It is full of graphic violence including peoples heads being sliced off and an animal being bludgeoned to death.   I have to say though that there is a really deep plot driving this anime that in my opinion almost anyone could appreciate if they could get passed the violence and tragedy.  I also have to warn that there is a scene in the movie in which a child is raped.  The rape scene isn't actually seen but it leads up to it and it is heavily implied.  If you're sensitive to this sort of thing you might either want to skip that part of episode five.  As I've already stated this anime is not for the faint of heart.

The whole anime is very tragic.  Incredibly so.  I was bawling my eyes out at the end.   Despite what you might expect from a horror the story is beautiful, the animation is beautiful, and it is all really pulled together by commentary it makes on the dynamics of human nature.  After finishing the series on Netflix we gave it five stars, which is very rare for Sire to do for anything let a lone an anime.   I really cannot compare Elfen Lied to any other anime I have ever seen and I am sad that I don't think I ever will be able to find anything like it.


  1. i just finished elfen lied myself and i absolutely LOVED it, especially that opening theme song which really surprised me with how deeply it affected me

    cool blog :)

  2. Thanks! Yeah I really was impressed by this anime everything about it is beautiful.