I don’t think I’ll ever be a fan of Japanese anime. I still prefer the full-motion animation of Disney at its best, or the CGI of Pixar. I find the cheap short-cuts of anime irritating. Still, when the story is this good, and when the art is this good, it is a lot more than just watchable. The very best anime artists know how to use stillness as well as motion, aren’t afraid to do small effects, and when it’s time for it, they know how to pull out all the stops. The imagination involved here is stunning, and the artistry blew me away. Though it was more than a little distracting to have one of the main characters, a scheming monk, voiced by Billy Bob Thornton, complete with Awrkinsaw accent.