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Cowboy Bebop: The Movie (2001)
"Cowboy Bebop: Tengoku no tobira" (original title)

R  |   |  Animation, Action, Crime  |  16 May 2003 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 28,629 users   Metascore: 61/100
Reviews: 115 user | 64 critic | 23 from

A terrorist explosion releases a deadly virus on the masses, and it's up the bounty-hunting Bebop crew to catch the cold-blooded culprit.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kôichi Yamadera ...
Spike (voice)
Unshô Ishizuka ...
Jet (voice)
Megumi Hayashibara ...
Faye (voice)
Aoi Tada ...
Ed (voice)
Yûsaku Yara ...
Hoffman (voice)
Kazuhiko Inoue ...
Shadkins (voice)
Jûrôta Kosugi ...
Harris (voice)
Kinryû Arimoto ...
Captain (voice)
Hidekatsu Shibata ...
Colonel (voice)
Yûji Ueda ...
Lee (voice)
Nobuo Tobita ...
Murata (voice)
Rikiya Koyama ...
Steve (voice)
Ai Kobayashi ...
Electra (voice)
Jin Hirao ...
Antonio (voice)
Toshihiko Nakajima ...
Carlos (voice)


The year is 2071. Following a terrorist bombing, a deadly virus is released on the populace of Mars and the government has issued a 300 million woo-long reward, the largest bounty in history, for the capture of whoever is behind it. The bounty hunter crew of the spaceship Bebop; Spike, Faye, Jet and Ed, take the case with hopes of cashing in the bounty. However, the mystery surrounding the man responsible, Vincent, goes deeper than they ever imagined, and they aren't the only ones hunting him. The original creators of the virus have dispatched Electra to deal with Vincent and take out anyone who may stumble on the truth behind him. As the hunt for the man with no past and no future continues to escalate, they begin to question what about the world is reality and what is a dream as the line between sanity and insanity becomes more apparent. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


They're here to save the planet. But not for free. See more »


R | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

16 May 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cowboy Bebop the Movie: Knockin' on Heaven's Door  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$234,429 (USA) (4 April 2003)


$999,435 (USA) (11 July 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The animation is sufficiently detailed to identify some of the guns used; the pistol used by Vincent Volaju on the train is identifiable as a Strayer Voigt Infinity, chambered in either .45 ACP or .380 Browning, and the submachine gun fired into the weather control center ceiling by Faye Valentine is identifiable as a Heckler & Koch MP5K, chambered in 9mm. Faye's pistol is a Glock 30: the model number is clearly visible when Faye shoots the game in the arcade. (The Glock 30 is chambered for .45 ACP.) Spike's pistol is a IMI Jericho 941, though the movie does not give enough clues to identify what round the pistol was chambered for. Jet's pistol appears to be a Walther P99, but lack of detail makes identification and chambering difficult. See more »


Numerous grammatical and spelling errors on computer screens (this was a loose translation by the Japanese crew). See more »


Hoffman: Even if you play by the rules, nothing ever gets solved!
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the closing credits we are taken back to the Bebop living room. Spike naps on the couch. Spike: He was just all alone. He couldn't enjoy a game with anyone else. Like living in a dream... That's the kind of man he was... He spots a butterfly in the air and grabs it. He opens his hand. Nothing is there. TEXT: ARE YOU LIVING IN THE REAL WORLD? See more »


Referenced in Once Upon a Time in Mexico (2003) See more »


Words by Chris Mosdell
Vocals by M
Music Composed by Yôko Kanno
See more »

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User Reviews

an extended jam on an established theme, with improvisations
3 July 2002 | by (Washington DC, USA) – See all my reviews

I'll try to avoid echoing other comments here and cut straight to the chase: This is not perfect, but MAN it's so close. I had some trouble with the pacing, which seemed a bit slow to me--as if they weren't quite sure how to work with a feature-length timeframe; I'm still a bit hazy on just how the villain's threat was resolved, which I'm usually not after a CB episode; and gosh, *why* isn't "Tank!" on the soundtrack? Songs with words just don't cut it in a CB score. --But honestly, those seem like such small problems next to everything that's wonderful about this movie. It has all the stuff you love about Bebop the series: the brilliant, flashing action and fight sequences, the character interaction, Spike's nicotine jones =), the gorgeous cinematic visuals, and the dreamlike melancholy that underlies even the funniest moments. The villain, his grip on the fantasy/reality divide completely erased after a genetic experiment on Titan, makes a neat counterpoint to Spike, forever haunted by his dreams of the perfect future he once believed in. Jet's protective concern for his reckless teammates was never better painted than in a scene where he blusters about how much happier he was without any of them and couldn't care less where they are, only to pounce on the phone's first ring like a worried mom on date night. There's just a *little* more of Faye's skin for the fanboys (but only a very little bit more, honest! we're not talking topless here! x my heart!), Ed has a trick-or-treat encounter that would never make it to American TV, and even the Big Shot duo put in an appearance (despite having absolutely nothing to say).

It's not intended as a wrap-up or finale to CB the series; it occurs in between episodes and should be thought of that way, as an experimental episode both different from and similar to the original sessions. Kind of like an extended jam on an established theme, with improvisations, in the true bebop style.

47 of 55 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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