The theatrical feature Eden of the East: The King of Eden
(2009) takes place six months after the hit broadcast series ended--when Akira Takizawa vanished after liberating 20,000 NEETS (young men with No Employment, Education or Training) and saving Japan from destruction by missiles. Saki Morimi kept the "Noblesse Oblige" cell phone that identified Takizawa as Seleçao No. 9, one of 12 agents charged by the mysterious Mr. Outside with saving a faltering, apathetic Japan. She flies to New York when an old message gives her a clue to his whereabouts. Takizawa has once again had most of his memories erased, but he and Saki rekindle their relationship while outwitting threats from the remaining Seleçaos. Voice actors Jason Liebrecht and Leah Clark once again make Takizawa and Saki a singularly engaging and believable couple, even in the most improbable circumstances. As he did in Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
, writer-director Kenji Kamiyama uses a reference to J.D. Salinger as a key element in the plot. (This time, it's the scene in The Catcher in the Rye
in which Holden Caulfield watches his sister Phoebe trying to catch the golden ring on the carousel.) The King of Eden
ends halfway through the story, as Saki and Takizawa prepare to return to Japan to resolve the battle of the Seleçaos. But Kamiyama builds the suspense so skillfully, the viewer feels impatient for the release of the second feature, Paradise Lost
, rather than cheated. The theme of Eden of the East
, the need for young people to revitalize the spirit and economy of Japan, seems prescient in light of the reports of young Japanese volunteering in record numbers to assist in the cleanup of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. The Blu-ray disc (and the second DVD) contain Air Communication
--the original series recut into a prequel feature (only in Japanese). (Unrated, suitable for ages 14 and older: profanity, violence, nudity, risqué humor, alcohol and tobacco use) --Charles Solomon
The intrigue goes international in The King of Eden
, a feature-length conspiracy thriller that continues the action of the acclaimed Eden of the East
. The deadly game that began in Japan now intensifies on the streets of New York City. The rules are the same: Do whatever it takes to win. Die if you lose.
Takizawa prevented Japan's destruction - and then he vanished. Six months later, clues lead Saki to the Big Apple in search of her missing friend. Meanwhile, the remaining Seleção are plotting their final move. Some of them would prefer Takizawa dead and out of the way. Some might even be willing to help him achieve his goals. Unfortunately, some are prepared to destroy everything if it means claiming checkmate in Mr.Outside's puzzling game.