Spirit of Wonder

What a welcome surprise! Miss China, the young proprietor of a restaurant and inn, is the main character of this engaging short film that follows her growing attraction to Jim, an assistant to a crazy professor, Dr. Breckinridge. While China starts off as a no-nonsense, feisty landlady bent on getting the rent from the strapped Doctor, she grows into a lovable character who simply wants what she can't have--Jim, who appears to have struck up a relationship with the flower girl down the street. But it turns out that Jim is more attracted to China than she really thinks...and Breckinridge doesn't turn out to be as crazy as he seems.

Though the film does require some logic stretches--as if any anime doesn't--its title is actually true, as it really does establish a melancholy which grows to wonder as the show progresses. Very few shows establish its characters and prove to be so enjoyable in 40 minutes' time, but this breaks a mold. Though the character design is unusual and occasionally distracting and the story owes a debt to "From The Earth To The Moon", it is an enjoyable, well-crafted title.

Spirit of Wonder -- mild language and very brief lechery -- A-