Blu-ray Review: Kinmoza – The Complete Series

The cute and colourful world of Kirno Mosaic, otherwise known as Kinmoza, comes to the UK as a Blu-ray and DVD Combo Pack via Animatsu Entertainment but what can one expect to receive on the Blu-ray disc? Well let’s take a look!

Synopsis:

Shinobu Oomiya once left Japan to participate in a homestay in England. During her time there, she became close friends with Alice Cartelet, the daughter of the family she was living with. However, when it was time for Shinobu to return to Japan, the two were able to express their sorrow despite the language barrier between them.

Five years later, now a first year student in high school, Shinobu receives a letter by air mail in a language she does not understand. This letter is penned by none other than Alice, detailing her own homestay in Japan. In fact, Alice will be attending Shinobu’s high school and living with her! Alongside their friends Youko Inokuma, Aya Komichi, and Karen Kujou, the five girls attend school together and learn about what their different cultures have to offer, day after day.

Our View:

Kinmoza, otherwise known as Kin-iro Mosaic, is a moe styled slice-of-life anime series based upon the four-part manga panel series written by Yui Hara that follows the story of five high-school-girls as they go about their daily activities. Does the series have an overhanging plot or storyline? Not really – instead it is just simplistic fun of watching these characters interact with one another on a daily basis. From this perspective at least Kinomoza should be downright boring, which in some instances it is; but the cute and charming personalities of the characters – as well as the bright and colourful world they inhabit – manages to bring us back in time and time again until the series reaches its rather, indecisive, ending.

The story of Kinmoza begins when Shinobu Omiya leaves Japan for a home stay in England with family relativies. It’s here where Shinobu is introduced to the wonderful world that is ‘England’ as well as the adorable blonde girl known as Alice Cartelet. Mesmerised by her hair colour and cute personality Shinobu makes it her ambition to learn English and become friends with her and soon enough the two do become best friends; even if they don’t speak the same language. Alas all good things must come to an end and so Shinobu returns back to Japan leaving Alice behind in England. Five years later Shinobu receives a letter from Alice explaining that she will be coming to Japan to learn the custom and language; and it is here where the story of Kinomoza really begins.

Naturally I am using the term ‘story’ loosely as while each episode covers two to three different topics, such as the cultural differences, living arrangements and daily school life, there isn’t a story that connects the episodes together. They are simply fun to watch and offer a nice ‘relaxing vibe’ as well as a comical break when compared to watching other anime shows. The only real element that connects the episodes together is the ‘character development’ between characters; for instance Shinobu is ‘worryingly’ obsessed with Alice and when Alice’s childhood friend from England, known as Karren, arrives it causes a bit of dismay among the group. The same can also be said for Aya, otherwise nicknamed by Ayayaya by Karen, and Yoko who see their relationship be tested (so to speak) amongst the other characters.

It’s safe to say that Kinmoza didn’t leave much of an impact on me. It does not delivery a story and instead offers mindless banter with simplistic topics; but because of this it provides a nice break from the norm of moe-filled-harem stories or over-the-topic-comedic action; but thats about it. If you are looking for a moe, slice-of-life, anime series with a developing story then this isn’t it; instead it is simply a bit of past time to relax and unwind our mind without thinking about too much. Its fun, it’s cute but its not entirely worth your time unless you want to experience something bright, colourful and slightly different from the norm.

Extras:

As with most Sentai Filmwork mastered releases distributed by Animatsu (and Manga) Entertainment the only supplementary features included on this Blu-ray discs are the textless opening and ending songs as well as a four trailers for other Sentai Filmwork released shows.

The trailers on the other hand can be found in their own separate section of the bonus features list and interestingly enough the trailers offered have not been released by Animatsu (or Manga) Entertainment within the UK.

In this case the trailers, which simply feature scenes of the anime overlayed with the opening song, consist of From the New World, YuYuShiki, Uta No Prince Sama and Mayo Chiki. From the New World and Mayo Chiki have been released into the UK via MVM Entertainment whereas the other two series have not yet received a UK release.

It is pretty much a ‘standard’ barebones release so there is nothing exciting or interesting to see here; however as the opening and closing songs for Kinmoza are both enjoyable I am glad to see them included as bonus features.

Specs:

Media:  BD 50
Region: A & B
Running Time: 5:09:09
Video: MPEG-4 AVC
Audio: DTS-HD 2.0 (Japanese)
Subtitles: English (Yellow)
Resolution: 1920×1080 (1080p)
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Frame Rate: 23.976 fps

Overall:

Consisting of twelve episodes, and presented on a single Blu-ray disc in Japanese with English Subtitles, Kirino Mosaic, which is often known as Kinmoza, is a cute and colourful moe-styled slice of life anime that sees two cultures collide in explosive Kawaii fashion. It’s a story that begins when Shinobu meets the adorable blonde girl known as Alice while on a home stay in England with relatives and the obsession for each other soon leads to Alice moving to Japan to learn more about the country and its culture.

Other than this ‘single-minded’ obsession Kinmoza doesn’t really offer any other type of developing plot line other than the ‘development’ of the characters involved. For instance the first episode acts solely as way of introducing Shinobu to Alice in her native country of England, most of which is spoken in ‘English’ by Japanese voice actors making it a more realistic experience, to which it ends five years later with Alice arriving in Japan.

This perfectly leads on to Alice becoming familiar with her new life in Japan as well as engaging with Shinobu’s friends, in this case Aya and Yoko. This friendship between characters grows and when Karen, a friend of Alice from England shows up, this friendship in the group grows even more with each character offering an individual personality. In this case Alice is the smartest (and cutest) of the group with Shinobu being a bit of a ditz – Aya on the other hand is the mature character while Yoko is the boyish girl and Karen is just a comical oddball. By the end of the series, of which covers daily antics of school life, each character fills their assumed roles perfectly.

As mentioned from my experience Kinmoza was about simply switching off and enjoying the events unfold; otherwise you may continuiously ask yourself what should I expecting from this show? The answer to this is nothing but cute moe comedy. There is no developing storyline (such as forming a band or saving the school) it’s simply cute girls going about their daily school life. This Blu-ray release by Animatsu Entertainment, with discs authored by Sentai Filmworks, meanwhile remains consistent with previous Blu-ray releases released in this fashion. In this case all twelve episodes in Japanese with English subtitles on a single Blu-ray disc with a simplistic static menu that lists each episode individually. Audio and Picture quality also remains consistent throughout with subtitles, presented in Yellow, being perfectly readable throughout. In short no issues to report; it is just as you would expect to receive – all episodes on a single disc in High Definition quality.

Score: review-stars-3

Kinmoza – The Complete Series will be available as a Limited Edition Blu-ray and DVD Combo Pack from the 9th October 2017 within the UK.

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About Scott Emsen
Scott is the Founder and Executive Editor of AnimeBlurayUK but in the past he has worked at ZOMGPlay, Rice Digital and Funstock and was once a Community Moderator for the Nokia N-Gage forums. Based in the UK, he loves anything related to Games & Anime and in In his spare time you'll mostly find him playing on one of his many gaming consoles; namely the PS Vita, PS4 or Xbox One.

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