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Blu-ray Review

DVD cover

Eden Of The East
Movie 1 - The King Of Eden/Air Communication


Starring (voice): Ryouhei Kimura and Saori Hayami
Manga Entertainment
RRP: £29.99
Certificate: 15
Available 06 June 2011

Having saved Japan from imminent destruction, Akira Takizawa has once again had his memory wiped, leaving behind a cryptic note for his friend to find him, once again in America. Intrigued Saki travels to meet her old friend, not even sure if he will remember who she is. Tracking him down he finally explains to her his role in a mysterious game, designed to save Japan, but the game is still ongoing and the two friends are under surveillance...

Eden of the East (2010 - 1 hr, 21 min, 21 sec) is a continuation of the well-received anime series. The events of the film pick up where the last episode finished. Combining social satire and mystery, both the film and the movie successfully push the boundaries of the anime genre.

During this current story Akira and Saki meet some more of the mysterious players, some who want to help, one who wants to kill them, now that Akira has become a folk hero in Japan. Some even want to destroy the whole country so that it can be built from the ground up. So, what can a twenty-one year old student and a naked amnesiac do to stop this terrible future?

If you missed the original show, worry not. For a start Eden of the East makes for a very satisfactory standalone film, better still the main extra is Air Communication (2 hr, 03 min 07 sec), longer than the film because it is a re-edited version of the TV show. It must be one of the few times I’d advise the buyer to watch an extra before they watch the main feature. The only downside of this truncated version is that it only has a Dolby TrueHD 2.0 audio track, with English subs.

The film sports the same level of background detail and character design which made the original show so popular. Likewise, the almost perfect mixture of thriller, comedy and social comment are perfectly balanced to make an entertaining whole. This creates both a positive and negative aspect to the release.

In the month that bought us Akira and Evangellion 2.22 on Blu-ray (June 2011), one displaying the richness of hand painted animation the other wowing with detailed CGI, it’s a shame that Eden has not pushed the level of its animation, which was agreeably high for television, up a couple of notches to match its status as a film. Still, fans of the show will be in familiar territory with both the story and the animation.

The audio on the disc comes as either a Japanese or English Dolby 5.1 True HD track, with subs and signs. With the amount of computer displays and telephone texting the signs are vital in this film.

The rest of the disc has few extras, not counting Air Communication, leaving only a collection of small pieces, mostly trailers and TV Spots.

Although the level of animation lets the movie down, but only by a small amount, the overall quality of the concept and story still makes this a strong contender for your anime collection.


Charles Packer

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