15 March 2017
14 December 2016
DIGIMON: DIGITAL MONSTERS: SEASON TWO. (2000-2001) LABEL: MANGA UK. DIRECTED BY HIROYUKI KADUDŌ. REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©
For those among you who are scratching your heads in puzzlement right about now and mumbling: 'What the bloody hell is a Digimon?,' fear not, all will be revealed in good time. Is now a good time for you? It is? Grand. Sure, we'll explain it all now, so, if you're absolutely certain it's a good time...? Yeah, right, let's cut to the explanation...!
As far as I can make out (yes, I too am a Digital Virgin, just like some of you...!), the whole DIGIMON thing is a giant Japanese media franchise, a lot like the POKEMON one, that includes virtual pet toys, anime, manga, films and a trading card game. Just like POKEMON, snigger, but I sure as shit ain't saying that no-one copied nobody nohow, and you can quote me on that, haha.
28 November 2016
10 November 2013
Anime, Japanese Animation
DVD & Blu-Ray
23rd December 2013 (UK)
Buy Wolf Children:
DVD / Collector's Edition Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack
When your kids get sick, do you take them to the doctor or the vet? That's the sort of dilemma faced by Hana, the young mother of boisterous Yuki and her timid little brother Ame. But then Yuki and Ame are no ordinary children: thanks to their wolf man dad, the two can transform into wolves at will! A charming modern folktale from internationally acclaimed director Mamoru Hosoda (Summer Wars, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time), Wolf Children is a beautiful, touching movie that will appeal to all ages, whether they're anime fans or not.
In March, Wolf Children scooped the prestigious Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year - an award that director Mamoru Hosoda also won with his previous film Summer Wars back in 2010.
Co-produced by Hosoda's own Studio Chizu and anime veterans Madhouse, Wolf Children earned over $50 million in Japanese cinemas, making it Japan's fifth highest grossing movie of 2012. Wolf Children has won multiple awards, not only in Japan but also in the US and Europe. Now the film after a very limited UK cinema & festival release now in December you will get a chance to own this film on DVD or Blu-Ray.
19-year-old Hana is studying at university when she falls in love with a mysterious classmate with a highly unusual secret - he is the last descendant of Japan's now-extinct grey wolves, and possesses the ability to transform into a wolf. Not daunted by this, Hana and her wolf man lover start a family, with energetic daughter Yuki ('Snow') soon followed by her more timid little brother Ame ('Rain').
But when tragedy strikes and her wolf man suddenly dies, Hana is left to cope with the two young children on her own - and both Yuki and Ame have inherited their dad's power to shift between human and wolf form. Moving to the countryside and the seclusion of an abandoned old house in the mountains, Hana hopes to raise her family away from prying eyes …but life's not that simple.
Part slice-of-life drama about the joys and tribulations of single mother Hana raising her half-wolf kids, part rite-of-passage movie about finding your place in the world, Wolf Children is a funny, moving and accessible film directed by a true anime great. With their mixed heritage, Yuki and Ame feel the pull of both sides of their nature …but which world will win out, the human or the wolf?
The Collector's Edition Bonus Disc Contents will include U.S. Actor & Staff Commentary,English Language Trailer,Stage Greetings
,PR Video Director’s Version 01 and 02,Promotional Video,Original Trailer and Original Teaser.
Wolf Children will be released by Manga UK on DVD and Blu-Ray 23rd December 2013.
4 August 2013
BD Release Date: 12th August 2013 (UK)
Cast: Hiroaki Iwanaga, Toa Yukinari, Takahiro Sakurai
Buy:Berserk: Movie 2 - The Battle For Doldrey [Blu-ray]
Griffith's words about true friends still resound in Guts' head. They haunt him on the battlefield and in his downtime, making him question his moves and motivation. This doesn't stop him from fighting for Griffith as the Band of the Hawk joins the other forces of the king to take down Doldrey, a nigh impregnable fortress that has never been successfully besieged. In between battles, Guts continues to ponder where his life is headed if he sticks with the Band of the Hawk, strengthens his bond with woman warrior Casca, and ultimately makes a decision that will have a great impact not only on his future, but on the rest of the Hawks' as well.
I first encountered Berserk when I picked up a copy of it in my library and I remember how different it was to other manga’s. It was more violent and graphic than other manga’s I had encountered (I had still to discover things like Ninja Scroll and Fist of the North Star) and I went to great lengths to acquire the other volumes. I then discovered that there was an anime of Berserk and since these were the dark ages before internet shopping became so easy to use (yes I am that old now shush) I had to scour DVD shops, HMV’s, charity shops and Forbidden Planet’s to find a boxset. But eventually I acquired it and myself and some other anime obsessed mates sat down to watch it. Wow were we disappointed! It was just a bit pathetic compared to the excellent manga we had all been reading.
Years later in 2012 I would go to the Scotland Loves Anime festival in Edinburgh where they were showing the new Berserk OVA’s and I will admit I was not that excited about these films. However I was blown away by not only the quality of the animation but the skill and time taken to properly translate Kentaro Miura’s manga to anime. Studio 4˚C brought their unique animation style that had been used to great success on their previous film Steamboy and from what I heard in the interviews after the films they went to great lengths to honour the original manga, including visiting Edinburgh to get a feel of medieval cities (shameless flattery to the Edinburgh fanbase I think though). The animation style is a mixture of CGI and hand drawn styles. Now this works for most of the film with the bodies and action being mostly CGI but the faces and emotions all being hand drawn but occasionally you will see the two styles clash with one another but this rarely happens and so the action scenes and battles look amazing and you get amazing characterisation and emotion from the animation. However many of the battle scenes do seem to be fought by armies of clones and so there is often very little variety in some of the larger battles and since this film focuses on a major battle it is slightly disappointing.
This film focuses on the interaction between two of the main characters Guts and Casca and the development of their friendship while fighting in the Band of the Hawk. These two characters form the basis of the Berserk series and it is their interactions and what happens to them that progresses the story. Casca is a great character and moves away from the standard warrior woman in manga and anime by having actual motives to fight alongside men rather than just being the regular chain mail bikini clad warrior. Saying this though her design does slightly drop her into this trope as she rides into battle with thigh high boots and armour that has its own cleavage.
Guts is a rather simple character but this is what drives him. He spends the film questioning what he is doing and if it is what he wants in life. He is left with a choice that means either staying with Band of the Hawk or trying to make his own life by himself. His growing friendship with Casca makes him want to stay but his desire to make his own life away from Griffith conflicts with this and the ending is suitably tragic for them all.
The voice acting of the Japanese actors is brilliant with Hiroaki Iwanaga, Toa Yukinari and Takahiro Sakurai as voices of Guts, Casca and Griffith. The English voice work is good but doesn’t sound as good as the Japanese. It’s not because they are bad but mainly because the Japanese language suites the melodrama of the series over the English.
Now the film is very good but what lets it down is the editing. Every so often there are scenes that seem to be missing. You will be watching it then suddenly the characters will have changed location or something would have been said that makes little sense. Overall this doesn’t affect the plot but affects the viewing experience and makes it look rather sloppy.
Overall though it is a great film for fans of the manga or any other anime fans.
23 August 2012
Anime classic Ninja Scroll comes to Blu-ray for the first time ever! Available in a limited edition Double Play Blu-ray/DVD Steelbook as well as separately on Blu-ray and DVD, Yoshiaki Kawajiri's wonderfully animated 1993 masterpiece sets the bar for ninja action, as wandering swordsman Jubei and female ninja Kagero carve their way through a host of super-powered bad guys. Gory, visceral and still shocking after nearly two decades, Ninja Scroll demands a place on any anime fan's shelf.
Tricked into helping Kagero and Dakuan take down the Eight Devils, expert swordsman Jubei must push his finely-honed fighting skills to the limit if he is to defeat his deadly adversaries, who include shadow assassin Shijima, blind warrior Utsutsu, explosives specialist Zakuro and, of course, the evil Himuro Genma himself. Pitted against such merciless foes, only one thing is certain; Jubei Kibagami must kill or be killed.
Along with Akira and Ghost In The Shell, Ninja Scroll was one of the key titles that opened the West's eyes to what anime could achieve. Stunningly animated and shockingly violent, Ninja Scroll combines sex, death, action, intrigue and copious fountains of blood to create an all-time anime classic.
Written and directed by Yoshiaki Kawajiri (Wicked City, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust), Ninja Scroll is made by veteran animation studio Madhouse, whose long list of credits include acclaimed movies such as Summer Wars, Paprika, The Girl Who Lept Through Time and Perfect Blue as well as series like Death Note and Black Lagoon. November 26th 2012 is the day all anime fans in UK have to include in their diaries, when Ninja Scroll is released on Blu Ray, DVD (re-release) and Special Steelbook edition.
Whilst creating this post our friends over at Twitch have found out Madhouse after 20 years are working on a new 3 part Ninja Scroll animation called Ninja Scroll Burst and below is the first teaser!
25 June 2012
This is probably one of the weirdest names for Japanese animation but Gianax's PANTY AND STOCKING WITH GARTERBELT has a cult following and in July UK&Irish fans can now own the series on DVD!
Panty and Stocking - the Anarchy Sisters - are two nasty angels who got booted from the pearly gates for being foul-mouthed bitches! Now they spend their days blowing up ghosts in the lecherous abyss between Heaven and Earth. Panty likes sex, Stocking likes sweets, their afro-sporting main man Garter Belt has a fetish we can't mention. Together, they're keeping the streets free of bodily fluids. Ghosts don't have a prayer against their panty pistols and stocking swords, and if this debaucherous duo can collect enough Heaven Coins, they just might get their halos back. They've got a slim chance in hell, but rolling commando is the best way to get lucky - especially with Panty and Stocking!
Ok this isn't you straight up anime nor is it the dreaded Hentai, its naughty, sexy, funny and the mix of stereotypical anime style and ren&stimpy visuals may appeal to a wider audience. Manga Entertainment are releasing the series (season one) on DVD in UK&;Ireland on July 30th, pre order your copy and check out the UK trailer below.
Panty And Stocking With Garter Belt Trailer Published via LongTail.tv