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Unique ID Code: 0000210643
Added by: Jitendar Canth
Added on: 1/2/2021 15:47
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    Anime Review Roundup

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    I didn’t think that I’d get a week like this in the middle of a lockdown, but all this week I had reviews for current releases, 4 in total including the latest Bill & Ted movie. But when it comes to anime, I had my preconceptions challenged, my expectations dashed, and finally my heartstrings tugged. Ujicha: Violence Voyager / Burning Buddha Man is a collection of animations from Japan, but it’s not anime as you know it. It’s Gekimation, utterly creative storytelling with painted paper puppets, a description that doesn’t actually do these films justice. I’ve never felt that anime was the best medium for horror, the bright colours and vivid lines don’t hold well with atmosphere and spookiness, but the two features in this collection are the most effective pure horror animations I have seen. It’s just a shame I’m not a fan of horror. Click on the review to read more.

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    You might have thought that a Cyber City Oedo 808 Collector’s Edition would be my holy grail; the chance to have the OVA that awoke me to anime in high definition would be something I’d leap at. And you’d be right. I did jump at it, and the package is very nice, including the CD and a nice booklet, as well as those classic cyberpunk OVA episodes, a futuristic Dirty Dozen, with the police recruiting three hardened criminals to serve as cops in exchange for reducing their sentences. Yoshiaki Kawajiri tips his hat to Die Hard and Robocop, as well as traditional vampire myths in three classic stories. But things aren’t too great with this release, certainly not if you were expecting a full HD transfer of the original cel and paint film, but also not even if you were expecting a consistently watchable SD upscale.

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    I had similar trepidation about the Millennium Actress - 4K UHD Blu-ray + Blu-ray Collector's Edition, although for this review I watched the Blu-ray bit. The film got a 4k restoration in Japan, and there were a few tweaks to the transfer, including DNR. The film is noticeably different to the old Manga DVD release, and not just in terms of resolution. But this is an instance where the new transfer doesn’t detract in any way from the film. It still looks better than it has done before, bringing Satoshi Kon’s most emotionally moving film across with stunning impact. It’s a romance through fifty years, and a love letter to cinema itself, and it’s one of my favourite films. I managed to end the week on a happy note.

    This Week I Have Been Mostly Rewatching...

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    Fate/Stay Night. Did I say holy grail? The grail is the object of the quest in this show. Seven mages summon seven heroes to do battle with each other to possess the chalice, which will grant one wish. It’s hard to get away from the Fate/Stay Night franchise, and ever since ufotable got their hands on the property, the quality of the anime has been nigh on peerless, and the storytelling has been good too. But this is where it began, with Studio Deen doing the honours, and churning out such a tedious and trope filled show that it’s a wonder that it was ever revisited. You have the popularity of the original game to thank for that. But having seen Fate Zero, and Unlimited Blade Works, it’s hard to see the first anime series in a positive light, and it’s certainly not as good as it was when I first reviewed it, and had nothing to compare it to. Still, to date this is the only anime adaptation of the first route through the game, and as such, it still holds a place in the hearts of Fate/Stay Night fans.

    MVM released Fate/Stay Night initially in six DVD volumes... here’s my review of volume 1. It subsequently got several complete collection releases, one of which is still available to buy today, but right now, MVM also have an upscaled Blu-ray version of the show on sale in the UK.

    Third Window Films released Ujicha: Violence Voyager / Burning Buddha Man on Blu-ray Collector’s Edition on Monday 25th January. All the Anime released the Cyber City Oedo 808 Collector’s Edition on the 18th. They then released the Millennium Actress - 4K UHD Blu-ray + Blu-ray Collector's Edition along with a standard Blu-ray release on January 25th.

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