A film by Hideaki Anno

As far as plot and pacing? That's a little hard for me to comment on. As I said, I enjoy watching the film and listening to the characters and I believe I have a generally good idea of what happens, why and what we're left with. The film begins very light-heartedly, and nothing incredibly major happens until the film has really gotten going (I'd say maybe 45mins into the film or so). Hiromi's actual "adventures" in engo-kosei make up the least amount of screen time and most of the movie is spent observing how Hiromi and her friends live in modern Japan. But from the get-go, we see the "demand" for assisted dating as Hiromi and her friends are propositioned time and time again.

But up to then the dating remains rather innocent. A little creepy, in my opinion, but nothing compared to what's coming. The turning point comes when Hiromi discovers a topaz ring at the mall and begins to consider using engo-kosei as a means to buy it. Then she discovers just how violent and dangerous engo-kosei can actually be...

I found Love & Pop to be an excellent film, with a lot of good qualities but a few not so good ones. But, it does establish Anno as not only a great anime director, but a great story teller and filmmaker in general.

I give Love & Pop 3 stars (out of 4)