A secret military project endangers Neo-Tokyo when it turns a biker gang member into a rampaging psychic psychopath that only two teenagers and a group of psychics can stop.

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(as Katsuhiro Otomo)

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Katsuhiro Otomo), (screenplay) (as Izo Hashimoto) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mitsuo Iwata ...
Kaneda (voice)
Nozomu Sasaki ...
Tetsuo (voice)
Mami Koyama ...
Kei (voice)
Tesshô Genda ...
Ryu (voice) (as Tetsusho Genda)
Hiroshi Ôtake ...
Nezu (voice) (as Hiroshi Otake)
Kôichi Kitamura ...
Miyako / Council 1 (voice) (as Koichi Kitamura)
Michihiro Ikemizu ...
Inspector / Council 8 (voice)
Yuriko Fuchizaki ...
Kaori (voice)
Masaaki Ôkura ...
Yamagata (voice) (as Masaaki Okura)
Tarô Arakawa ...
Army / Committee G / Eiichi Watanabe (voice) (as Taro Arakawa)
Takeshi Kusao ...
Kai (voice)
Kazumi Tanaka ...
Army (voice)
Masayuki Katô ...
Sakiyama / Council 4 (voice) (as Masayuki Kato)
Yôsuke Akimoto ...
Harukiya Bartender (voice) (as Yosuke Akimoto)
Masato Hirano ...
Committee F / Spy / Yûji Takeyama (voice)
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Storyline

Kaneda is a bike gang leader whose close friend Tetsuo gets involved in a government secret project known as Akira. On his way to save Tetsuo, Kaneda runs into a group of anti-government activists, greedy politicians, irresponsible scientists and a powerful military leader. The confrontation sparks off Tetsuo's supernatural power leading to bloody death, a coup attempt and the final battle in Tokyo Olympiad where Akira's secrets were buried 30 years ago. Written by Tzung-I Lin <tzung@hugo.att.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The end of the world was only the beginning See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic violence and brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 July 1988 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Akira: The Special Edition  »

Box Office

Budget:

JPY 1,100,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$439,162 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (re-release)| (35 mm prints)| (2001 re-issue)| (Dolby TrueHD 5.1)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1 (VHS version)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scene with the black circles just before the final scene and credits is actually a pencil test. See more »

Goofs

The rank insignia on the Colonel's uniform changes from 2 stars to 3 stars in some shots. See more »

Quotes

Kaneda (2001 Pioneer dub): What's wrong? Have some trouble?
Tetsuo (2001 Pioneer dub): Yeah. But I already took care of it. And you're too late, you missed the show.
Kaneda (2001 Pioneer dub): Tetsuo, you had me worried again. I figured you'd be standing here sobbing like a little baby.
Tetsuo (2001 Pioneer dub): Kaneda, you've always been a pain in the ass, y'know. You've been telling me what to do since we were kids. You always treat me like a kid. You always show up and start bossing me around, and don't you deny it!
Kaneda (2001 Pioneer dub): And now you're a boss, too... of this pile of rubble.
Tetsuo (2001 Pioneer dub): Kaneda!
Kaneda (2001 Pioneer dub): That's Mr. Kaneda ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The date of the first coming of Akira is the exact same date as it was released originally in Japan. See more »

Connections

References Scanners (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Winds Over Neo-Tokyo
Performed by Geinoh Yamashirogumi
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
An animated masterpiece, without the sing-alongs of Disney fare
25 January 1999 | by (St. Louis, MO) – See all my reviews

It amuses me that so many people are appalled by the "graphic violence" of this film when they are the ones who will turn around and glorify a movie like "Silence of the Lambs" simply because it is live-action. Akira completely dispels the myth that animation must be replete with characters who are super-deformed and randomly break into song. This is a true emotional experience the likes of which Hollywood could not duplicate even if it tried.

A gang of young motorcyclists get involved in a government plot involving the resurrection of "Akira," a force which once laid waste to Tokyo. Now, in the Neo-Tokyo of the future, the youngest and lowliest of the gang, Tetsuo, ends up harnessing this extremely destructive power and goes on a rampage of telepathic mayhem to earn the fear of those who once bullied him relentlessly. Beneath the violence in this movie lies the very touching story of this young man and his reconciliation with Keneda, his best friend.

One of the most moving scenes in the film is a flashback that shows the first meeting between the two when they were very young. Though the other kids had bullied and harassed Tetsuo, Keneda was there to stick up for his now lifelong friend. If those who watch Akira can discard their preconceived notions of what animation should be, they will find one of the most exciting, emotional, and rewarding films they will ever have the fortune of seeing.

As a special side note, I personally prefer the dubbed version, which is executed very well by a talented cast of voice actors. My favorite line in the movie belonged to the Colonel: "They don't teach tact at the academy." Though it was adapted from a huge body of manga work, Akira was executed perfectly, being directed by its original creator, Katsuhiro Otomo.


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