Weathering Continent, The
"The Weathering Continent" is a 55-minute movie from 1992, directed by Koichi Mashimo ( "Ai City", "Dominion Tank Police", "Eat-Man"), with character designs by Nobuteru Yuki ( "Angel Cop", "Battle Royal High School", "Five Star Stories", "Lodoss War") adapted from the original novel illustrations of Mutsumi Inomata ( "Leda", "Utsunomiko", "Windaria").
In a time before recorded history, another continent existed: Atlantis. Now, in the twilight of its one-time greatness, villages, cities, and entire kingdoms have been reduced to ruins in a vast, dead, desert.
"A city embraced by judgment and death..."
Three travelers cross this parched landscape in search of water. On their quest, sorcerer Tieh, young disciple Lakshi, and warrior Bois stumble upon Azec Sistra, a city-sized tomb, where the mummified bodies of the centuries-old dead rot in greater grandeur and luxury than could be dreamed of by the currently living. However, when grave robbers disturb and awaken the spirits of these dead, our trio must make a decision; to fight to continue on their harsh and doomed journey, or to remain in comfort and die, drifting away.
"Lakshi, everything shall return to the earth."
The Weathering Continent has beautiful, elaborate character and background designs. Unfortunately, it seems like the character designs are too detailed, because their movements are very limited. Whenever they move or walk, the camera usually changes to still pan shots, extreme close ups of people's feet, or long distance shots where the characters are tiny dots. The look of the characters leads one to expect a grand sword and sorcery adventure; but, as the theme of the story is a melancholic meditation on the greatness of what once was, but is no more, and the siren call of Death's release, the show is, instead, wistful and sad.