Mania Grade: A-
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- Audio Rating: A+
- Video Rating: B-
- Packaging Rating: A
- Menus Rating: B+
- Extras Rating: B+
- Age Rating: 17 & Up
- Region: 4 - Australia / South America
- Released By: Madman Entertainment
- MSRP: 29.95
- Running time: 110
- Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Petite Cossette
By John Eriani
June 07, 2006
Release Date: May 17, 2006
What They Say
© Madman Entertainment
"Who loves me so much that he would forsake his own dear life... could it be you?"
Eiri, a talented art student, works part-time in an antique shop in a quiet part of town. One afternoon, he uncovers a delicate Venetian glass that holds a startling secret. When Eiri peers into the glass, he can see a young blond girl, her life playing out like a movie solely for him to see. Curious, he stares into the glass, hoping to learn more about the enchanting girl inside. She is Cossette, a mysterious beauty who haunts the glass, waiting 250 years for someone to finally see her, and set her free. Eiri is soon obsessed with Cossette; determined to do anything he can to help her. Will Eiri see past all the illusions and discover the tragic truth about Cossette, or will he be consumed by anguish and obsession?The Review!
Horror and Mystery fill this story from director Akiyuki Shinbo about the ghost of a small girl and her portraitAudio:
I watched the shown in its original Japanese language in DTS and it was a great experience. From music to rain to action scenes everything had a great range of directionality where almost all the channels get a workout, a good home theatre setup will only enhance the show to its benefit. The music especially is one of the shining parts of the audio from my point of view. Dialogue was also clear throughout and there were no issues with distortion of any kind. There is also an English 5.1 and Japanese 5.1 mix available so there is nothing to complain about.Video:
The transfer is presented in its original aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and enhanced for anamorphic widescreen. It's a shame that an OVA like this where a lot of the story is told through odd abstract imagery is an NTSC to PAL conversion. The normal interlacing problems apply and I did notice some banding in shadows. Otherwise it is a decent transfer that most people will be happy with, of course I'm not one of them. Packaging:
The packaging for the region 4 release is similar to the region 1 release with Cossette sitting on a chair looking rather forlorn. It really doesn't give you an idea of what the show is about but the whole image looks great. It's a shame that a nice dark cover is ruined by a bright blue OFLC rating, but thankfully Madman have given us a reversible cover with different artwork and no rating. The reverse front cover is of Cossette being held up by chains and the logo displayed in the bottom centre. The back cover for both versions is the same and consists of a few images from the show without really giving anything away. There is a brief synopsis but the text is rather small and hard to read. It also lists the various features on the disc and the standard technical grid Madman has on all their releases. Another great package from Madman. Menu:
The main menu on the disc is an image of Cossette's glass with images swirling around inside it overlayed with the different menu options while eerie music is played in the background. The font used for the menu's can be a little hard to read at times but it only takes a few minutes to adjust to. Everything is easily accessible without and issue. Each episode has its own menu item but it's a shame there is no scene selection.Extras:
The Extra's on the disc while interesting are a little light. The behind the scenes featurette introduces the main creative staff and the voice actors. It runs about 20 minutes or so and talks about what they wanted to create as well as the process they went through and the world the OVA inhabits. Another extra is the music video of the ending theme song sung by Marina Inoue, it's a little silly looking at times but its done in black and white with her handcuffed and rubbing up against a tree (not at the same time) surrounded by cloaked people. There are also a US and Japanese trailer as well as a TV spot and Madman trailers.Content:
(please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Le Petite de Cossette is the story of Eiri Kurahashi discovering an antique glass in which he can see the life of a girl named Cossette d'Auvergne. Eiri is an art student and works part time in said antique shop and after receiving some boxes of new stock that have been sent by his uncle he encounters the glass and from there his life changes forever. At first it seems like an unhealthy obsession that makes little sense but we soon hear Cossette responds to him and explains that his is the reincarnation of her lover and she needs his help. Cossette wants to be set free and rest in piece and for that to happen, Eiri must endure all the pain of the cursed objects that were present when she was killed.
It's a very interesting idea that possessions that were once owned can hold a grudge against someone who murdered their owner. When Eiri is attacked by the cursed items all the pain and hatred they feel transforms him into a monster that resembles Devilman a little with a dash of SoulTaker. As the episodes progress we learn more about Cossette and who killed her and the reason behind it as well as what this has to do with Eiri.
Meanwhile outside of Eiri's little bubble his somewhat girlfriend Mataki Shouko (well she wishes she was) is becoming jealous of the fact that Eiri seems to be in love with someone but she doesn't know who. Mataki finds Eiri after one such onslaught of the cursed items and demands she know just who he has fallen in love with and what has happened to his body. Later she goes to see him but because of what she witnesses she faints and becomes sick although it seems to be more then just the shock.
Another acquaintance of Eiri's, Zenshinni of Shakado can sense spirits all around the shopping arcade. She knows Eiri is involved somehow and these cursed spirits are attacking him as his shop is in the centre of what she senses. She tries to help but she doesn't seem to be able to do anything more then find out more information about what Eiri is dealing with. While Eiri is willing to suffer to help Cossette the bond they start to share becomes real for Cossette and she can't bring herself to let him continue. Talking any more about what happens is really big spoiler territory and the show's mystery is something you need to unravel yourself.
The ending while a little abrupt does allow you to make your own conclusions and was something I really liked. The three episodes of the OVA move quickly enough so you won't be bored, I did find the first episode rather slow until the mystery of Cossette and the cursed items became a part of the story but otherwise it will keep most people's interest without a problem.
The animation at times can overwhelm with obscurity and the character designs don't really stand out too much except for Cossette. Yuki Kajiura musical score is wonderfully eerie and brings a sense of action to certain scenes that brings out excitement within the viewer. The ending them song is similar in tone and is something I really enjoyed with Marina Inoue's vocals mixing well with Kajiura score. It's haunting and sad but also enjoyable.
The obsession with a little girl may some bother people and at first I have to admit I was one of them. I don't get the whole Lolita thing and this is a title I was going to stay well away from. Luckily I have been given the opportunity to watch this wonderfully creepy OVA. It's a mature story with interesting twists done in a very artistic and stylish way although sometimes to its detriment. There are many different things that can be taken away from the show and certain elements can be missed completely on first viewing. Some viewers may see things other don't, it is a rather subjective piece and is definitely a story that requires multiple viewings.In Summary:
Le Petite de Cossette is something that doesn't come along too often these days, serious OVA horror. While the director likes to confuse you with images but the story is there to be discovered. Music is very atmospheric and suits the tone of the subject matter. It's a shame the video has problems but you should do yourself a favour and check this out. Thanks to Petite Cossette I will never look at antique furniture or old paintings the same way again!
Japanese DD 5.1 Language ,Japanese DTS 5.1 Language ,English DD 5.1 Language ,English Subtitles ,Behind the Scenes ,Original Trailer ,US Trailer ,TV Commercial Collection ,Music Video
LG 32LX2D 32" HD LCD TV, Sony DVP-NS50P Progressive scan region free DVD player, Monster component cable, Yamaha TSS-15 Home Theatre Sound System