An odd string of suicides surrounds a private institution on Roosevelt Island. On the night a classmate dies, Kate, Rachel, Rose and Claire wake with no memories of the evenings events. The next night, the four girls are drawn together by mysterious red butterflies only they can see. Converging at Central Park, the girls are approached by a strange woman who tells them they are dead. Now, the four girls must work together to learn the secrets of their death-and the means to return to their previous life.
Kate, Rachel, Claire, and Rose, the high school heroines of the supernatural fantasy Red Garden
(2006) share a vexing problem: They can't remember what they did on a recent evening. Mysterious red butterflies lead the girls to a small park, where Lula, an equally mysterious woman, tells them they were all murdered that night. Lula has arranged for them to receive "borrowed lives" that enable them to continue daily existence. In return, the quartet must kill weird, werewolf-like men that stalk the night; if they fail, they cease to exist entirely. Red Garden
continues the recent fad for dark, grisly adventures in anime. The violence isn't as graphic as in Elfin Lied
, but Red Garden
isn't a series for the squeamish. In Japan, the show spawned an OVA spin-off, Dead Girls
. (Rated TV MA V, suitable for ages 16 and older: violence, violence against women, grotesque imagery, profanity) --Charles Solomon