Mini Moni ja Movie Okashi na Daibouken!

by Aprilis on August 25, 2006 · 6 comments · AddThis

Mini Moni

Mini Moni ja Movie Okashi na Daibouken! (also known as “Mini Moni The Movie The Great Cake Adventure”) is Mini Moni’s debut movie. As the title suggest, the movie is about cakes and adventure. As cheesy as that story line sound, there are more to this movie than cakes and adventure. The movie was used to explain why Mari Yaguchi was leaving Mini Moni, how Ai Takahashi joined the group and how Mika became the new leader.

The movie stars all five members of Mini Moni: Mari Yaguchi (the then leader), Nozomi Tsuji, Ai Kago, Mika Todd, and its new member Ai Takahashi. It also feature the voice and songs of Yuko Nakazawa (former member of Morning Musume) and 4 girls from Hello! Project Kids: Risako Sugaya, Mai Hagiwara, Airi Suzuki and Maasa Sudou. And of course, any Mini Moni movie wouldn’t be complete without their beloved mascot, Minimo.

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Mini Moni Who?

Mini Moni is a Hello! Project subgroup created by Mari Yaguchi in 2001. The group consisted of Mari (as the leader), Nozomi Tsuji and Ai Kago. Mika Todd from Coconuts Musume (originated from Hawaii) was later added to give the group a more international flavour. Mari wanted to show that even small people are capable of lots of things. Thus, one of the Mini Moni rules was that all members must be 150 cm in height or shorter (this rule was lifted when Ai Takahashi joined the group, because she was 153 cm).

Yaguchi and Minimo
Yaguchi and Mini Moni's mascot, Minimo

The group’s music is directed towards young children, which is why most of their songs are just plain fun and silly. Despite the “children” lyrics, the group experimented with lots of different types of music ranging from Pop to Rock n’ Roll. And because of this, they are also very popular with older listeners like the parents of the young fans.

In 2003, Mari left the group to support Hello! Project Kids by leading the new subgroup, ZYX. Ai Takahashi was added to the group while Mika became the new leader.

 

Synopsis

The story takes place in a 3D animated town that’s populated by Minimo. In the town there’s a café that’s famous for its delicious cakes: the Mini Moni Café! The café is run by Yaguchi the manager, the great baker Mika and 2 waitresses, Tsuji and Kago. It is an exciting and busy day at the café because tomorrow is the café’s second anniversary. And to celebrate, the girls made an enormous cake in the shape of a castle and decorated it with varies candies, cookies, and chocolates.

Queen Nakajelinu
Queen Nakajelinu and her four little fairies

On this very same day, a cake-lover-school-girl Ai Takahashi decides to stop by the Mini Moni Café. After taking one bite, she instantly falls in love with Mika’s delicious cake. Ai wants the secret recipe for the cakes, so she peeks through the window of the kitchen. She see some colourful decorated eggs on the table and figures that the eggs must be the secret ingredient!

At night when everyone is sound asleep, something magical happen: Queen Nakajelinu arrives at the café with her four little fairies. This queen proclaims to be the most beautiful lady and hates all kind of sweets, especially cakes. She turns Mini Moni’s anniversary castle cake into her new home and orders the fairies to turn all of Mini Moni’s cakes into stones!

Cartoon version of Mini Moni

As the four little fairies carry out their queen’s order, Tsuji and Kago sneak into the kitchen and begin eating the café’s supplies. Ai has also sneaked into the café in hopes of stealing some of those colourful decorated eggs. This is where things go terribly wrong: Tsuji and Kago accidentally set off the alarm system, which wakes up Yaguchi and Mika. Yaguchi is more than furious when she finds out it is Tsuji and Kago who had been eating the café’s stock. In the midst of this chaos, the four little fairies accidentally turn Mini Moni and Ai into tiny animated characters! Now the five girls must get Queen Nakajelinu to turn them back so they can get back in time for the 2nd anniversary party!

 

Music

This movie is like a classic Disney movie where there’s singing and dancing. Most of the songs are performed by Mini Moni, with a few done by other artists in the movie. The songs fit very nicely into the storyline and are very upbeat and fun. Like the opening song “Okashi Tsukutte Okassui~!” and “Genki Jirushi no Oomori Song”.

Mini Moni's curtain call
Mini Moni's curtain call with Yaguchi and the Hello! Project Kids

“Okashi Tsukutte Okassui~!” is a silly repetitive song about making sweets and cakes. “Genki Jirushi no Oomori Song” is a cheerful upbeat song about living life cheerfully and just live life without sweating the small things. This is a perfect song on a gloomy day!

Both these songs were on Mini Moni’s 6th single, “Genki Jirushi no Oomori Song”, which was released before the movie. The two songs were featured again on the “Minimoni ja Movie Okashi na Daibouken! OST” that was released a month after the movie. The OST included other songs that were performed in the movie including Yuko Nakazawa’s “Watashi wa Kono Yo de Ichiban Bijin”.

 

Conclusion

Mika and Takahashi
Mika and Takahashi

As already mention, the storyline is kind of cheesy. But I really like how they “explained” how the 2nd generation of Mini Moni came to be. I mean just because a lot of Mini Moni fans are young children, that doesn’t mean they’re not interested to know why Yaguchi was leaving the group. These younger fans would probably not understand or be satisfied with the real explanation. So by laying the explanation out with a fictional story, the parents won’t have to answer a million “why?” questions about Yaguchi leaving and Ai joining the group.

Tsuji and Kago

The girls’ acting skills are okay, not the best but it’ll do. Plus a majority of the movie is animated, so no real acting skills is really needed. Got to love the out-takes that are shown at the end while the credits are rolling, they’re very cute and goofy. Then again, isn’t that what out-takes are about?

Overall this is a light-hearted comedy musical movie, and I really enjoyed it. It’s not one of those movie where you go “OMG, I absolutely love this movie! I’m going to watch it again!” It’s one of those where you’re start off watching thinking “Meh what the heck, is not like I have anything better to do”. And as the movie progresses, you find yourself slowly drawn towards it. As most people will say, this is a must watch for Mini Moni fans. And for those who aren’t really familiar with Mini Moni, give it a shot! This is really a movie fit for kids of all ages.

Rating: ★★★★☆

 

Mini Moni ja Movie Okashi na Daibouken! DVD

Purchase this item: YesAsia US | YesAsia Global

 

Where’s Mini Moni now?

In 2004 Mika Todd (leader of the 2nd generation) decided to leave Mini Moni to study music in Los Angeles, United States. Since then, the group had been put on an indefinite hiatus. Before Mika’s graduation, the group released their 12th and last single (to this date) “Lucky Cha Cha Cha!”.

 

Sources: Wiki.ThePPN & Wikipedia

 

It’s only been a few months since I started writing for the blog. And I must say, I’m very happy and proud to be part of the blog family! I’ll like to congratulate the McBlog on its first anniversary! And thank you eyn, for creating this blog and allowing us to be a part of this great blog team!
 
There’s a part in the Mini Moin movie where Kago said she can’t believe it’s been two years since the Café had open, it seems so fast! Yaguchi exclaimed and said, “What are you talking about?! The Café still has a long way to go!” Tsuji agreed and said, “5 years… 10 years… 100 years!” The same goes to the blog: this first anniversary is just the beginning!

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About the author

Aprilis was first introduced to the world of J-Pop through Ayumi Hamasaki's music. Through Ayu's music she was exposed to and fell in love with other J-Pop acts such as Ai Otsuka and Hello! Project. She is currently living in Japan and enjoying every moment of it.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

jackie January 4, 2009 at 5:00 am

What is that biscuit song called and where can you find it???

Reply

melissa September 2, 2006 at 4:26 pm

Hahahaha that movie was too cute! *spoiler warning* I loved how Tsuji and Kago took down the giant creampuff monster by eating it.

Reply

bluesakura September 1, 2006 at 12:01 pm

oh i love minimoni,but as talking of movies i haven’t seen even one of the hello project, how saad, thanks for thiss it gives me little idea of wath is about, see yaaap

Reply

Rinoa MALTA September 1, 2006 at 8:15 am

Nice review! I liked how you described it. It was really informative and interesting even though I am not a Mini Moni fan. Keep on writing visual reviews since they are extremely insightful. Thank you for introducing this movie to me.

Reply

Kitkat UNITED STATES August 27, 2006 at 3:54 pm

Most excellent review! I’m a Mini Moni fan myself, and I was woundering about the Mini Moni movie. I wasn’t quite sure what it was about, and if I should buy it, or not. I will defiantly look into getting, or atleast watching the movie. Thanks a bunch~!

Reply

Matthew Ramsden UNITED KINGDOM August 27, 2006 at 3:45 pm

Minimoni Ja movie Okashi na Daibouken! Sounds like a good movie to purchase. You’ve done a good job Aprilis! Keep it up all of you! :D

Reply

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