Minimoni The Movie: The Great Cake Adventure!

Title: Minimoni The Movie: The Great Cake Adventure!
Original Title: Minimoni ja Movie: Okashi na Daibōken!
Rating: 3.5/5
Genre: Comedy, Musical, Adventure
Starring: Mari Yaguchi, Mika Todd, Ai Kago, Nozomi Tsuji, Ai Takahashi
Director: Shinji Higuchi
Language: Japanese

When most bands announce a change in the line-up they have a press release, or mention it in some official capacity. A lot of smaller bands don't even do that, they simply place it on their website and let the fans discover the change in their own time. Minimoni (a J-pop band formed amongst some of the members of the well known “Morning Musume”) clearly had other ideas as the 'story' of how the band leader left and the woman who would replace her is all depicted in this hour long film. Apparently. In reality I think they let themselves exaggerate the events a little too much, and if this really is anything remotely resembling how it happened then they should all be tested for LSD. As the title alludes this really seems to be about their great cake adventure, not that I'm really complaining as some sort of J-pop 'Some Kind of Monster' flick wouldn't be half as much fun.

With their current line-ups second year anniversary rapidly approaching, the MiniMoni cake shop run by the bossy one, cakes baked by the tom boy-ish one and served by the clutz twins, is preparing by baking an elaborate castle cake to celebrate, but trouble is brewing. The shop is broken into by the evil Fairy Queen who despises all cakes and orders her fairy minions to turn them all to stone, but bring back the castle cake because that might be fun to live in. Discovered when the alarm goes off, they panic and drop their fairy dust and - no it doesn't turn them to stone as you might think, but – turns them into miniature CGI characters. They're also broken into by a cat burglar trying to steal their secrets, but nobody seems to care and she ends up joining the group anyway. On commences their great journey to find the Evil Fairy Queen and with the help of a friendly fridge and an army of gingerbread men, invade the castle to get back whats rightfully theirs.

With none of them actually being actresses it was probably a wise move to keep their actual screen time to a minimum, probably the reason for turning them all into short CGI creations to blend into their 'childrens TV' level of CGI surroundings, which oddly enough works in helping you reminisce back to your childhood (or at the least mine). The plot is all over the place and makes nigh on no sense, like a child trying to force pieces of a puzzle to fit without much success, and yet it's still fun; it still manages to make you forget your age and start giggling to their cutesy oddball antics. I think it's already evident that this film has a pretty niche market that for most reading wont apply but its sheer absurdity and nonsensical nature means that you don't need to be a fan to watch it. In fact, I imagine this would make excellent stoned viewing...


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