Akira (Special Edition) (DVD) ~ Katsuhiro Otomo (director) Cover Art

Akira (DVD)

Katsuhiro Otomo (director)


List Price: $39.98
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Release Note

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 Kaneda--run with a biker gang, but trouble grows when Tetsuo start to resent the way Kaneda 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

In 1988, the landmark Anime film AKIRA, by director Katsuhiro Otomo, defined the cutting edge of Anime around the world. By today's standards, Akira remains the pinnacle of cel animation and retains the explosive impact of its highly detailed animation and its intensely violent saga of power and corruption. Neo-Tokyo has risen from the ashes of World War III to become a dark and dangerous megalopolis infested with gangs and terrorists. The government seethes with corruption and only maintains a token control over the powerful military that prevents total chaos and hides the secrets of the past. Childhood friends Tetsuo and Kaneda plunge into Neo-Tokyo's darkest secret when their motorcycle gang encounters a military operation to retrieve an escaped experimental subject. Tetsuo, captured by the military, is subjected to experiments that make him a powerful psychic, but, unfortunately for Neo-Tokyo, Tetsuo's powers rage out of control and he lashes out at the world that has oppressed him! Nothing can stop the destructive forces that Tetsuo wields except possibly the last boy to destroy Tokyo. Insert: 1) Black BRC response card (regular version).

2) Todd McFarlane Toy Insert (limited to 300,000 total inserts) * Anime masterpiece first time ever on DVD for North American release! * Created and directed by Katsuhiro Otomo. Special Features: * Digitally re-mastered including High Definition film transfer, High Definition restoration. * THX Certified * New English dialogue, new 5.1 mix (on the English audio only), scene access and more. * Disc 2 contains supplementary materials including "Akira" Production Report, "Sound Clip," director's interview, trailers, production materials, Restoration of "Akria", and "Akria" glossary. * Widescreen format (1:78) and enhanced for widescreen TV's (anamorphic). Akria The Special Edition (DVD9, 2 discs)


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