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One Piece Collection 9 DVD Review

Director: Konosuke Uda

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale, Ikue Ohtani, Brina Palencia, Yuriko Yamaguchi, Stephanie Young

Running Time: 575 minutes

Certificate: 12

It’s taken over 200 episodes but the Straw Hat Pirates have finally made it. Not to their destination of course, but in to the fantastic world of widescreen. The first episode of the latest set is the conclusion to the Navarone arc, but after that the colours are brighter and the image stretchier, just like Luffy himself. This allows for more of the brilliant artwork to be seen, and also lets the action sequences take place on a wider canvas. We’ve all come to take widescreen for granted, so this transition is a stark reminder of just how much more we are treated to.

Unfortunately the latest arc isn’t exactly the
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Good Luck Girl DVD Review

Director: Tomoyuki Kawamura.

Starring: Kana Hanazawa, Yumi Uchiyama, Haruka Tomatsu, Brina Palencia, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Martha Harms.

Running Time: 300 minutes

Certificate: 15

Big boobs. Anime loves them. There’s no escaping the fact that a bouncing pair of mammaries sells well and Good Luck Girl intertwines this idea into its plot. Ichiko (Hanazawa/Palencia) is the girl of good fortune hinted at in the title. She has money, popularity, looks, and big breasts. She has indeed been blessed with good luck, however in this world it means that she has actually been taking fortune from those around her. A god of poverty is sent to equal out the balance, and hopefully teach Ichiko a lesson or two.

Although initially coming across as a typical tale where large breasts are obsessed over, the show manages to provide us with a truckload of character development and emotional drive. Ichiko is a victim of her own good fortune,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 8 DVD Review

Director: Konosuke Uda

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale, Ikue Ohtani, Brina Palencia, Yuriko Yamaguchi, Stephanie Young

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 12

One Piece continues its fantastic voyage, now crossing over the 200 episode mark. Not only that, but this collection manages to show all the great bits of such a brilliant series. It contains the action, adventure, and sheer joy of exploration.

This set sees the conclusion of the Skypiea saga, which does rather brave examination of Gods and religions. We see powerful men willing to exploit others and abuse their power, while also criticising blind followers. A series of episodes that explores the past of Skypiea and its mythology also provides a welcome break from the main story, while chronicling a sweet and honourable bromance. Such tangents from the main stories in anime can sometimes be a curse,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 7 DVD Review

Director: Konosuke Uda

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale, Ikue Ohtani, Brina Palencia, Yuriko Yamaguchi, Stephanie Young

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 12

Taking us into the land of Skypiea, this 7th collection of One Piece episodes, taking us from episodes 157-182, adds a new dimension to the usually water set saga. Although the water is pretty much just replaced with clouds, there are plenty of new dynamics, interesting beasts, and a world of religious intrigue, which all helps to prevent the series from getting stale..

The characters are once again split up, which does allow for a lot of individual character development. Best of all, this development usually presents itself in the fight sequences. Being an archaeologist, Robin is more concerned with her surroundings when fighting and the damage done to ancient relics. Choppers, as a doctor,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece: Strong World Blu-ray Review

Director: Munehisa Sakai

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Yuriko Yamaguchi, Stephanie Young, Ikue Ohtani, Brina Palencia, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale, Cho, Ian Sinclair

Running Time: 109 minutes

Certificate: 15

With One Piece: Unlimited World Red released on gaming platforms this Friday and One Piece: Strong World arriving on Blu-ray and DVD this upcoming Monday, it’s never been a better time to be a fan of Eiichiro Oda’s mange/anime. This is the first film released in the UK despite being a cinematic entry from 2009. This means that certain elements may be jarring for those who have been following the DVD releases of the series over the last year as we encounter characters not yet introduced in the dubbed run. Those who have kept up with the show in its original Japanese language will be more settled though.
See full article at The Hollywood News »

'Dragon Ball Z: Battle of the Gods' Trailer

'Dragon Ball Z: Battle of the Gods' Trailer
Funimation has debuted two new trailers for Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, along with the announcement that the upcoming animated adventure will debut in a limited theatrical event from August 5 through August 9 in over 350 theaters nationwide. We also have a new photo gallery, along with the official synopsis and the full English-language voice cast for the first Dbz animated movie in over 17 years, directed by Masahiro Hosoda. Check out the trailers and images below, then clickHere to find out if Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods is coming to a theater near you.

Following the events from the internationally renowned animated television series, Dragon Ball Z, after the defeat of Majin Buu, a new power awakens and threatens humanity. Beerus, an ancient and powerful God of Destruction, searches for Goku after hearing rumors of the Saiyan warrior who defeated Frieza. Realizing the threat Beerus poses to their home planet,
See full article at MovieWeb »

Chrome Shelled Regios: Part 2 DVD Review

Director: Itsuro Kawasaki

Starring: Ayahi Takagaki, Brina Palencia, Mai Nakahara, Monica Rial, Mikako Takahashi, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Nobuhiko Okamoto, Todd Haberkorn

Running Time: 300 minutes

Certificate: 15

The heavily influenced dystopian show is back to complete its run, and this time the show manages to underplay elements taken from other films and television programmes. There’s a greater focus on character and politics in this collection of episodes, and although that may sound like a good thing, it makes the show a rather convoluted and confusing watch.

Chrome Shelled Regios doesn’t exactly supply any memorable characters, and nor does it focus on a a particular character or group for a decent amount of time. The narrative is constantly switching in order to build a world in which we can feel engaged, but this is something that should have been done in the first place. Complications for the latter half of the series
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 6 DVD Review

Director: Hiroaki Miyamoto, Munehisa Sakai, Junji Shimizu, Konosuke Uda

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale, Ikue Ohtani, Brina Palencia, Yuriko Yamaguchi, Stephanie Young

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 12

Like with any anime series following a huge arc, One Piece settles into a few smaller adventures during its sixth boxset. Each one makes a strong effort to be more than simple filler though, elaborating on characters or making sure the individual adventures are fun and engaging. This is leagues away from becoming anything even close to stale, which may be down to the general theme of exploring. Other animes seem to become bogged down in overcomplicating stories and having to add new elements, whereas One Piece has an entirely imaginative world to explore as our heroes make their way to their goal but become distracted by
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Chrome Shelled Regios Part 1 DVD Review

Director: Itsuro Kawasaki

Starring: Ayahi Takagaki, Brina Palencia, Mai Nakahara, Monica Rial, Mikako Takahashi, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Nobuhiko Okamoto, Todd Haberkorn

Running Time: 300 minutes

Certificate: 15

Chrome Shelled Regios sounds like a wonderful idea at first, but it isn’t long before your mind starts connecting the dots and realising that every aspect of this dystopian science-fiction has been taken from previous anime, films, TV series and novels. It’s a rough compilation of ideas thrown together resulting in the anime equivalent to a hurried out album of various artists which is released to cash in on an upcoming Holiday/event. That’s not to say it’s terrible. Like any compilation, there are loads of great “tracks”, but there is also a lot of filler, and ideas that have worked better elsewhere.

The main locale of the series is set in a city that resides in a huge dome. This dome
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 5 DVD Review

Director: Hiroaki Miyamoto, Munehisa Sakai, Junji Shimizu, Konosuke Uda,

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 12

In terms of story, this 5th collection is the most ambitious yet. Picking up from where the last set left off, we now find Vivi and the Straw hat Pirates, in Vivi’s homeland where rain has not fallen for years. A conspiracy is uncovered that looks set to erupt in civil war if Vivi and the Straw Hats can’t put an end to a reign (or should that be rain?) of terror from the mysterious Crocodile A.K.A. Mr. Zero. Confidently setting character development and focus on the protagonists aside, One Piece once again shows how it can handle the more mature plot strands.

With a dark sense of tragedy throughout this very extensive arc,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Wolf Children Blu-ray Review

Director: Mamoru Hosoda,

Starring: Aoi Miyazaki, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Takao Osawa, David Matranga, Haru Kuroki, Jad Saxton, Yukito Nishii, Micah Solusod, Amon Kabe, Alison Viktorin, Momoka Ono, Lara Woodhull, Takuma Hiraoka, Jason Liebert,

Running Time: 117 Minutes

Certificate: 12

When you consider that Mamoru Hosoda started his directorial career with Digimon, then it’s kind of surprising that the man is now considered the deserved successor to the Miyazaki throne. Hososa has already crafted two spectacular animations in the form of The Girl Who Leapt Through Time and Summer Wars, with his latest, Wolf Children, being every bit as remarkable as his previous work. Taking on a werewolf love story, the actual romance is dispensed with early on through tragic and ambiguous circumstances. This is a love story between a mother and her two children, as well as exploring the different paths children take in the course of their lives.

Hana is a
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 4 DVD Review

Director: Hiroaki Miyamoto, Munehisa Sakai, Junji Shimizu, Konosuke Uda,

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 15

These releases certainly come thick and fast, but it’s an output most should be happy with. After all, One Piece isn’t a show you merely dip into every now and again. It’s a show that becomes an addiction, and like all drugs it can leave you wandering the streets begging for your next hit. This is something that could be said for many of the long running anime shows such as Dragon Ball Z, Bleach, and Naruto, but it has to be said that One Piece has that little something over those other popular, and often entertaining shows. Variety is the key to One Piece, as it goes way beyond setting up
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 3 DVD Review

Director: Hiroaki Miyamoto, Munehisa Sakai, Junji Shimizu, Konosuke Uda,

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 12

With Monky D. Luffy and shipmates continuing towards the Grand Line, but as One Piece has proven time and time again, it expertly mixes in individual arcs while the main plot drives forward. It makes for a show that is ever so easy to enter for new fans, or those returning from a long break, without making old fans feel as though they are being forgotten. This is the first collection where the core cast of characters feel at ease with each other. All the conflict and suspicions have been left behind and the writers have done a tremendous job at making the cast feel like a close-knit family while also relating them to the audience.
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Aria The Scarlet Ammo DVD Review

Director: Takashi Watanabe,

Starring: Juni Majima, Todd Haberkorn, Rie Kugimiya, Leah Clark, Ayako Kawasumi, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kaori Ishihara, Jad Saxton, Kenji Nojima, J. Michael Tatum, Mariya Ise, Luci Christian,

Running Time: 300 minutes

Certificate: 15

Butei are armed detectives who work independently from the police. They are also trained from an exceptionally young age, which has given rise to Butei schools, where students attend and always carry their weapons. Enter our hero Kinji (Majima/Haberkorn) who we are introduced to just as his life is under threat from a radio controlled bomb. He’s soon saved thanks to the efforts of the titular Aria (Kugimiya/Clark) and as you can guess from the fact this is an anime, the two end up living together, where they share action adventures and comedic misunderstandings relating to complex love triangles.

It may sound as though Aria The Scarlet Ammo doesn’t have anything new to offer,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 2 DVD Review

Director: Hiroaki Miyamoto, Munehisa Sakai, Junji Shimizu, Konosuke Uda,

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 12

Picking up directly where Collection 1 left off, One Piece returns to complete its introductory arc. The last member of the crew, chef Sanji, joins the gang but just as it looks as though everything is in place, we discover that navigator Nami may not be everything she appears. After a gruelling battle with Don Krieg, the show clearly announces that although violence isn’t going to be used on a regular basis, the show isn’t afraid to use it when creating conflict and consequence. This fact becomes even more obvious during the next arc of the show that focuses on Nami’s past and her connection to the dreaded fishmen. Fish-men hybrids that are super song,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Panty & Stocking With Garterbelt The Complete Series Blu-ray Review

Director: Hiroyuki Imaishi,

Starring: Arisa Ogasawara, Jamie Marchi, Mariya Ise, Monica Rial, Kouji Ishii, Christopher R. Sabat, Takashi Nakamura, Ian Sinclair, Hiroyuki Yoshino, Joel McDonald, Yuka Komatsu, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Ayumi Fujimura, Cherami Leigh,

Running Time: 352 minutes

Certificate: 18

Extras: Panty & Stocking With Garterbelt Revealed: Unrated Cut, Sit Down With Panty and Stocking, Panty and Stocking in Sanitary Box, Ghost Explosions Collection, Ghost Explosions Collection Documentary, TV Promotional Video, Commercial Collections, Talk Live Animated Loft/Plus One, Making Of Lingerie Scene, Outtakes, Trailers, Textless Opening/Closing Songs,

Ever wondered what The Powerpuff Girls would be liked if one of them was a slutty sex addict and Professor X was an S&M fan with a penchant for young boys? No? Probably not, but just because you never imagined it, doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy it. Panty & Stocking With Garterbelt is a twisted, over sexualised, foul mouthed, and revolting play upon Western style animations.
See full article at The Hollywood News »

One Piece Collection 1 DVD Review

Director: Hiroaki Miyamoto, Munehisa Sakai, Junji Shimizu, Konosuke Uda,

Starring: Mayumi Tanaka, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kazuya Nakai, Christopher R. Sabat, Akemi Okamura, Luci Christian, Kappei Yamaguchi, Sonny Strait, Hiroaki Hirata, Eric Vale

Running Time: 650 minutes

Certificate: 12

It’s finally arrived! One Piece is one of the longest running animes, sitting alongside the likes of Bleach and Narruto, and yet it isn’t until now we are getting a box-set here in the UK. Not only that, but it’s also the uncut FUNimation and Japanese dubs of the show and not the butchering 4Kids version. A company that treated the show with such little respect (as it does Pokemon) that 144 episodes were edited down to 104. Still, that’s all in the past now and we can explore the show as it was meant to be seen, and what a show it is.

One Piece starts with the simplest of prologues before
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Okami-San And Her Seven Companions DVD Review

Director: Yoshiaki Iwasaki

Starring: Shizuka Itou, Brina Palencia, Miyu Irino, Joel McDonald, Kanae Ito, Monica Rial, Aki Toyosaki, Caitlin Glass, Ayako Kawasumi, Colleen Clinkenbeard. Hirofumi Nojima, Micah Solusod, Satomi Arai, Luci Christian,

Running Time: 276 minutes

Certificate: 12

If you haven’t noticed, there’s a trend in modern culture to adapt famous fairytales into contemporary settings, or place them in darker and grittier worlds. Anime is no exception and thus we have Okami-san And Her Seven Companions. However, despite some very obvious references, the show is quite subtle at including motifs from such classic stories, as well as putting greater focus on the exploration of the themes rather than plot points.

Okami is a teenage girl that works as part of the Otogi Bank, only this bank doesn’t lend money, it’s a student run bank that deals in favours. Being high school, and the connection with fairytales, the majority
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Chaos: Head Collection DVD Review

Director: Takaaki Ishiyama

Starring: Carrie Savage, Eri Kitamura, Todd Haberkorn, Hiroyuki Yoshino, Brittney Karbowski, Ayumi Tsuji, Clarine Harp, Chiaki Takahashi, Colleen Clinkenbeard, Kara Edwards, Mark Stoddard, Stephanie Sheh,

Running Time: 300 minutes

Certificate: 15

Extras: Textless intro and outro,

Takumi is a nerdy kind of guy known as an Otaku. That’s a person with an obsessive love of anime. Takumi’s obsession runs so deep that he is in love with an anime character and resists any contact with, what he calls, 3D girls. He lives in a large shipping container that sits on the roof of his family’s apartment building. He collects figurines of his favourite characters and prefers to be left alone.

Unfortunately for Takumi, this is a choice that is no longer his. After a series of murders known as the Next Gen killings, he begins talking with someone over the internet known as The General. This
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Dragon Age: Dawn Of The Seeker DVD Review

Director: Fumihiko Sori

Starring: Colleen Clinkenbeard, Christopher Sabat, Brina Palencia, J. Michael Tatum, John Swasey, Chuck Huber

Running time: 85 minutes

Certificate: 15

Dragon Age: Dawn Of The Seeker is an animated film based on the popular RPG video games. I’ve never played the games, but I am a big fan of rival RPGs such as The Elder Scrolls series. I’m not exactly adverse to swords, sorcery, and dragons. Dargon Age: Dawn Of The Seeker takes place in your typical fantasy world and begins with what seems to be a religious rite, in which dragon’s blood is fed to a young girl. The girl is soon rescued by a group of knights known as Seekers. One of these Seekers is Cassandra, who is beautiful and skilled but also quite rash and violent. She soon uncovers a plot that is attempting to overthrow the Chantry of Andraste.

The film is
See full article at The Hollywood News »
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