Now that these DVD's are showing up in stores, I have to mention this series. Haibane Renmei is the story of girl who wakes up from a dream in a strange town to begin a new life; with no memories of her old one. The town is filled with normal people, as well as other Haibane like her who have emerged from their dreams into this new life. The Haibane look like angels, with small wings and halos, but otherwise are just like the rest of the people in the town... a town that seemingly, nobody can leave.
Haibane Renmei is one of the more unique and beautiful series I've seen. The arkwork and colors (particularly the backgrounds) are gorgeous and muted; matching the contemplative mood and pace of the stories. Watching this series feels like putting on your favorite, most comfortable sweater for the first chilly day of the fall.
It's definitely not for everybody. In fact; I predict that most people won't like the series. Much like the director aBe's previous series, Niea_7, Haibane Renmei is largely about "nothing". Rather than relying on a conventional climax/resolution story structure, Haibane Renmei is more about the unfolding lives of these girls who are creating new lives for themselves in this strange town. There is little action, comedy, or romance but it never ceases to fascinate in its own relaxed, quietly beautiful way. Not for everybody, but I give it my highest recommendation.
Here's another review of Haibane Renmei over at ANN.com in case you want a second opinion. They were particularly enthusiastic about the dub, if you're into that sort of thing. If you want to buy it online, Amazon can help you with that.
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