Films at SLA will be showing at Glasgow Film Theatre (12th-14th Oct) and Edinburgh Filmhouse (19th-21st Oct). Click here for more details.

Scotland Loves Animation is a festival which, over the last two years, has slipped under many radars. With Africa in Motion, Take One Action and the launch of many new theatre seasons across Scotland, it’s been tough for it to take centre stage. This isn’t to say it has been neglected; now in its third year, the festival has produced its own full programme with a broad range of anime films, some of which have never been screened outside of Japan.

For introductory anime fans, Studio Ghibli has always provided wondrous anime, but in a way the films all capture familiar themes about nobility and mythology. While SLA’s programme brings similarly epic tales of medieval, war-torn nations (Berserk – The Golden Age Arc), it also offers dystopian nightmares of the digital age (Blood-C: The Last Dark).

There seems to be an intriguing focus on ‘the youth’ this year, which (thankfully) steps away from the typical western view of combative anime. Naoko Yamada’s K-On! Movie tells of a group of high school graduates who take a trip to London in search of musical fame with their band. The original Manga story was serialised back in 2007 before being made into a TV series in 2009, so it will be interesting to see how it transfers into a feature. Meanwhile, Ryôsuke Nakamura’s début feature Nerawareta Gakuen is perhaps one of the most anticipated films of this year’s festival, a fascinating study of adolescent psychology and manipulation, as an 8th grade transfer student uses skills of telepathy to take over his new school.

Yoshiaki Kawajiri’s notorious, action-packed Ninja Scroll (in HD!) pops up for some guaranteed thrills. You can’t really go wrong: overthrowing the government twinned with battling demon ninjas. Folklore-style themes mixed with magic, fighting and highly moral narratives will break up the programme nicely and offer a wholly diverse experience. The same can be said of Takayuki Hirao’s Gyo – Tokyo Fish Attack, a bonkers Manga adaptation which sees the city invaded by monster mechanical sharks.

For added insight, directors Yamada and Nakayama will be attending Glasgow screenings to discuss their new films and the wider anime scene in Japan. In Edinburgh, anime producer Eiko Tanaka (My Neighbour Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service) will be introducing both Berserk films along with the films’ character designer/animation director Naoyuki Onda. This is an unmissable opportunity to witness passionate and progressive filmmaking deep from the heart of Japanese anime and to engage in the genre with leading industry professionals.


GLASGOW – Glasgow Film Theatre

Tickets : £7.50 (£6) : 0141 332 6535 :

Friday 12 October

Ace Attorney (UK Premiere, Digibeta) : 6pm

Gyo – Tokyo Shark Attack (TBC Material) : 11pm

Saturday 13 October

Afterschool Midnighters (Scottish Premiere, HDCAM) : 1.30pm

K-On the Movie (European Premiere, HDCAM) : 3.40pm

Berserk – Egg of the King (UK Premiere, HDCAM) : 6.45pm

Sunday 14 October

Tiger & Bunny – The Beginning (HDCAM) : 12.30pm

Naoko Yamada : 1pm

Anime Mirai Project (European Premiere, HDCAM) : 2.30pm

Blood-C The Last Dark (UK Premiere, HDCAM) : 5pm

Ninja Scroll (TBC Material) 8pm

EDINBURGH – Filmhouse Cinema

Tickets : £7.50 (£5.50) : 0131 228 2688 :

Monday 15 October

Ace Attorney (live action) : 8.15pm

Tuesday 16 October

Anime Shorts (inc. Tokyo Marble & more) : 8.45pm

Wednesday 17 October

From Up On Poppy Hill : 8.30pm

Friday 19 October

Afterschool Midnighters (HDCAM) : 6pm

Berserk – The Egg of the King (HDCAM) : 8.30pm

Saturday 20 October

Berserk – The Battle for Doldrey (EU Premiere, HDCAM) : 1pm

Nerawareta Gakuen (World Premiere, HDCAM) : 6pm

Blood-C The Last Dark (HDCAM) : 8.30pm

Sunday 21 October

Ninja Scroll (TBC Material) : 3.30pm

Anime Mirai Project (HDCAM) : 6pm

Wolf Children (Scottish Premiere) : 8.40pm