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Akira [Blu-ray]

4.2 out of 5 stars 404 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Nozomu Sasaki, Mami Koyama, Mitsuo Iwata, Tesshô Genda, Hiroshi Ôtake
  • Directors: Katsuhiro Ôtomo
  • Writers: Katsuhiro Ôtomo, Heidi Wilbur, Izô Hashimoto, Kevin Seymour, L. Michael Haller
  • Producers: Haruyo Kanesaku, Hiroe Tsukamoto
  • Format: Animated, Color, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Subtitles: English, Japanese
  • Dubbed: English, Japanese
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: R
  • Studio: Honneamise
  • Release Date: Feb. 24 2009
  • Run Time: 124 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 404 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B001LMU182
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #54,224 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Product Description

Anamorphic widescreen.
Audio: Japanese (Dolby TrueHD 5.1), Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1), Japanese (Linear PCM Dolby Surround), English (Dolby TrueHD 5.1).
Subtitles: English, Japanese.
Rated: R (graphic violence and brief nudity)

Released by Bandai Visual under their Honneamise label. This version (6-69198-62004-1) is out of print.

Artist-writer Katsuhiro Ôtomo began telling the story of Akira as a comic book series in 1982 but took a break from 1986 to 1988 to write, direct, supervise, and design this animated film version. Set in 2019, the film richly imagines the new metropolis of Neo-Tokyo, which is designed from huge buildings down to the smallest details of passing vehicles or police uniforms. Two disaffected orphan teenagers--slight, resentful Tetsuo and confident, breezy Kanada--run with a biker gang, but trouble grows when Tetsuo start to resent the way Kanada always has to rescue him. Meanwhile, a group of scientists, military men, and politicians wonder what to do with a collection of withered children who possess enormous psychic powers, especially the mysterious, rarely seen Akira, whose awakening might well have caused the end of the old world. Tetsuo is visited by the children, who trigger the growth of psychic and physical powers that might make him a superman or a supermonster. As befits a distillation of 1,318 pages of the story so far, Akira is overstuffed with character, incident, and detail. However, it piles up astonishing set pieces: the chases and shootouts (amazingly kinetic, amazingly bloody) benefit from minute cartoon detail that extends to the surprised or shocked faces of the tiniest extra; the Tetsuo monster alternately looks like a billion-gallon scrotal sac or a Tex Avery mutation of the monster from The Quatermass Experiment; and the finale--which combines flashbacks to more innocent days with a destruction of Neo City and the creation of a new universe--is one of the most mind-bending in all sci-fi cinema. --Kim Newman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Lets just get one thing straight,In the details of the product, it claims that its just 2 disc's. There are not 2 disc's that come included in this package. The are 3 disc. the DVD version that comes with one dub. the Blu ray version with the streamline, original, and the remastered Japanese dub. and the bonus features on another Blu ray disc. worth noticing.
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Format: Blu-ray
Few anime films are as groundbreaking, mystifying, or head-scratching as Akira. For years, it's been the benchmark which all other anime films are measured against. Its scope and ambition is far beyond most films, anime or otherwise, and it serves as a figurehead for mature, intellectual stories built on unique concepts that nobody has really ever attempted to replicate. Now we have the 25th Anniversary Edition on Blu-Ray, which could very well be called the definitive version of this wonderful classic.

Akira takes place in a dystopian Tokyo circa 2019, 31 years after a massive explosion decimated the city and triggered the onset of World War III. The city is rife with political corruption, civilian protests and biker gangs, one of which is the Capsules, led by a young boy named Kaneda. The Capsules are at war with a rival gang known as the Clowns, who they routinely battle for control of territory. During one particularly violent skirmish, young Capsule gang member Tetsuo is severely injured when he nearly runs over a young disfigured blue-skinned boy. Tetsuo's motorcycle explodes just before impact under mysterious circumstances. Military forces arrive at the same moment as the Capsule gang, and Kaneda witnesses Tetsuo being taken away for medical treatment. The disfigured boy, known as Takashi, is taken back to a secret military research facility that has been conducting experiments on he and two other children. The hospitalized Tetsuo begins to manifest telekinetic psychic powers brought on by his close encounter with Takashi, but he also experiences severe headaches and psychological trauma in the process. Tetsuo escapes the hospital and begins to manifest antagonistic and antisocial behavior, the former of which is directed at his close friend and rival Kaneda.
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Format: DVD
I got the Limited Edition Tin within the first week of it's release. Well, to say the least it was worth my money and then some and unlike many of my DVD's don't collect dust.
The picture is just incredible. There were a couple scenes where the reds were slightly too bright but it was not so obvious that it detracted from my viewing of the movie. This is an entirely hand drawn animation that is still more detailed than anything Disney or even Pixar supplies us today and it was treated with the dignity it deserved.
Japanese Audio is always the way to go. I wish they had remixed it in the Dolby 5.1 but unless you have an elaborate entertainment system setup it isn't that signifigant. Just would have been a nice treat. Voices were PERFECT. It just all fit perfectly. I love the Japanese voice for Tetsuo, he just had that perfect, insane, but you still feel for him to a certain extent, something that I felt was lost in the English translation.
English Audio: Um... how does anyone miss that crap of a job dub done in '88? Masaru sounded like my grandfather for crying out loud, the girlfriends of Kanada's biker gang have thick Jersey accents, Kaneda sounds like he's 30ish and it goes on (I won't even begin to mention that it was the FIRST dub that screwed up the japanese script, not vice versa!). And this is exactly what people complain about. I've heard a lot of people complain about the new voice of Kaneda because he sounds too young. Did everyone forget that Kaneda and Tetsuo are in the age ranger of 14-17? They are supposed to sound young! Same problem came up with the kids.... in the Japanese script I hate to say it but the numbers do sound like small children.
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Format: Blu-ray
Akira is a must see film for those into action or scifi. The plot focuses on a biker gang composed of high school drop-outs and delinquents who live and fight in Neo-Tokyo, the war torn modern Japanese capital. For those not too keen on "anime" animation, it is an extremely high-budget animation for an anime film so it will likely look much better than anything you may have seen before. In 1988 it cost roughly 10M US dollars to produce, consists of 2,212 shots and 160,000 pictures which exceeds the average for a film of its length by 2-3 times. Lip-syncing was also done for the character's voices which was a first for anime films. To sum it up this movie was way ahead of its times in terms of production quality and it still shows 22 years later. I really like the plot, and the over-all quality of the film's animation makes it a must see, be it DVD or on Blu-ray. The quality of the Blu-ray transfer is rather good though, so I would recommend it over the DVD versions. Pick this one up or at least rent it, you won't be disappointed.
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Format: DVD
The 2-disc DVD set of AKIRA surpasses in many ways even the excellent Criterion's laserdisc edition from 1992. The brand-new video transfer is noticeably better: colors, especially the primary reds and greens, look more brilliant, flesh tones are more realistic, and there is a bit MORE picture at the bottom (in particular, the shot at time 1:16:23 reveals part of Kaneda's crouching body that was not seen on old transfers). The 5.1 English track, though not state of the art, is highly active and satisfying. The new English dub and subtitles are better written and spoken, making the characterizations more real and the story more comprehensible. In the scene where the colonel meets the senator (Chapter 8), the old English dub had the senator sounding concerned and supportive. On the new dub, he sounds cold and indifferent, in keeping with his subsequent body gesture of fiddling with his plants. The new dub also has characters speaking in correct pitches -- Kei's voice is now lower, and Masaru no longer sounds like an old man, but like a child, just like on the Japanese track. Also welcomed are the correct pronunciations of Japanese names: AH-kee-ra, KAH-nee-dah, KAH-oh-ri. Last but not least, the new dub makes more frequent uses of strong language to enhance reality. The DVD supplements include interviews of the voice actors for the new dub, who certainly deserve to be mentioned.
Here is one thing that this DVD pales in comparison to the Criterion LD. The LD included still-frames of the entire first issue of the original Akira comic novel. It is a shame that this DVD does not include even one screen shot of the actual comic strips that inspired this movie (it does include shots of the COVERS of the comic novels) just to benefit those who have never seen them or do not own the LD.
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