Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: J.D. Hawkins, Chris Patton, Kevin Corn, Ted Pfister, Andy McAvin
Director: Hirotsugu Kawasaki
Genres: Indie & Art House, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Anime & Manga, Animation
Fast paced, violent, and loud, Spriggan uses a combination of drawn and computer animation to deliver the kind of slam-bang thrill ride Final Fantasy only promised. The convoluted plot, based on a manga series by Hirotsugu... more »
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I think I just lost a good portion of my brain cells...
Skyline 99 | Chicago, IL | 11/06/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I have watched quite a fair amount of anime, but this has got to be one of the most disappointing titles I have ever watched. While there are a lot of slam, bam, kid-with-superhuman-strength-saves-the-world titles out there, Spriggan almost takes the cake when in comes this eye candy/zero-plot genre. In Spriggan, 17 year-old Yu Ominae fights for ARCAM, a secret organization focused on protecting ancient and dangerous ruins. He is a Spriggan, in essence an elite super solider trained from childhood to be an efficient killing machine. After an unsuccessful attempt on his life by a rival organization, Yu becomes involved in a case centered around protecting the newly-excavated Ark of Noah, which is in fact an extraterrestrial ship with the ability to destroy or create new life on the planet. To top this absurdity, the Pentagon deploys a genetically enhanced child, Col. MacDougall, along with some extremely powerful and insane cyborgs after the Ark to retrieve it at any cost....Now even I could come up with a better plot than this. But of course, you'd have to see the movie to see what I mean when I say the plot falls apart quicker than toilet paper left out in the rain. I mean, the movie starts out intersting enough, but so much more time could have easily been spent developing the characters, plot, motivation, back-stories while at the same time keeping almost all of the action and fight scenes intact. We never really find out why the Pentagon wants the Ark, or how and why Yu originally became involved with ARCAM. And while religion is often prevelant in many anime titles (most of the times in a convoluted, misunderstood way), Spriggan does a good job of somehow throwing in Biblical references into the already disorganized plot and twists them to a whole new, annoyingly absurd level. When the sinister child Col. MacDougall proclaims that he was "chosen by God" to open up the Ark, I couldn't help but roll my eyes. Also, the constant referal to the characters being "inside Noah" as opposed to the Ark, had me wondering if the creators actually knew what Noah and the Ark actually were. By no means, however, were the misinterpereted Biblical references the only cliche in the movie.Again, the United States (as in many anime titles) is portrayed as an arrogant, naive nation bent on controlling the world at all costs, often to the consternation of more "civil" nations and countries. While this viewpoint could be brought up at certain moments in real life, a no-brainer movie such as Spriggan certaintly does not have the merits or skill to present this topic in an intelligent way, and the theme of protraying America in a condescending manner only adds on more cliches to Spriggan.While I know many action movies suspend the laws of physics, Spriggan goes so far as to present some of the most unrealistic action scenes known to man. Yu and his comrade Jean-Jaques Mondo face their fair share of abuse, but what they can withstand is obnoxious. You have to witness the scenes with Jean and Little Boy (and Jean doesn't even have on super-human armor!), or Yu's fight with Col. MacDougall to truly appreciate the level of absurdity when it comes how much of a beating they can take. My eyes nearly rolled out of their sockets when Yu and Jean escaped from the Ark. Nonsense I tell you!Lastly, the soundtrack nearly left my ears ringing and my eyes watering. While the soundtrack throughout the movie seems to have potential, the composers obviously were uninspired. I nearly left the room when I heard the male vocals in English during the closing credits. That has to be one of the worst songs in anime history. Ha!About the only thing I can recommend about this movie are the action sequences, which, while absurd, are pretty impressive. But unless you have some serious money to burn, don't even think about buying Spriggan; renting it is probably your best bet. By the way, what the heck is a "Spriggan" anyway?"
Animated Action Movie
amsaturn | Ann Arbor, MI United States | 04/24/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This anime is exactly like your typical action movie, only animated. It's got your stereotypical characters - super soldier, psychic kid, evil government branch, old scientist dude and some French guy. There are many explosions! It is very well animated and fun to watch, but the plot will leave you a little confused on the details and has a high corniness quotient. The ending especially was like a string of cliches, while at the same time not making a lot of sense.The one feature that makes it stand out is the dub sounds great! I hardly ever watch dubs because they usually do not begin to compare to the Japanese version, but all the actors in the Spriggan dub did a wonderful job!! The voices fit the characters (perhaps better than the originals), and the acting was on the mark.I do have a complaint about the DVD menus, which is the text is so small I had a difficult time reading it. My tv is of a decent size, so I have no idea why they chose to make the writing so tiny. Besides that, the extras were ok, but there wasn't much of them.This was fun to watch once, but I doubt I will watch it again. It's a nice rental. If you enjoy action movies even if they are a little cliched, you will probably have fun watching this."
Great action movie--but ONLY an action movie
oldcrow | 09/18/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Spriggan is a fast-paced action story with beautiful animation. However, that's ALL it is. If you're looking for an entertaining story filled with lively and well drawn fight scenes, then this is for you. However, characterization is limited, and in some cases non-existent. The plot is simple and leaves areas outside the main plotline almost completely unexplored. There is also no romantic angle to it.
In other words, this movie is good at what it is, which is a pure shoot 'em up adventure film complete with everything from car chases to gun battles to knife fights. It doesn't pretend to be anything other than that."
THE FIGHT FOR HUMANITY BEGINS HERE!
Dennis A. Amith (kndy) | California | 08/13/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Back in 1998, "SPRIGGAN" was an anime hyped for it's beautiful animation, based on a very successful manga series and of course, the people behind it.
"SPRIGGAN" was directed by first-time director Hirotsugu Kawasaki and supervised by Katsuhiro Otomo (the creator of "Akira") and is based on a manga "Striker" by by Chu Takasige and Ryoji Minagawa which appeared on the publication "Shonen Sunday".
Suffice to say, the anime made headlines when there was a major bidding war over the rights to make the movie.
With Otomo and Kawasaki at the helm together with the animators of Studio 4°C, "SPRIGGAN" was a film to utilize traditional cel animation with computer animation which was very significant at the time.
As for the story behind "SPRIGGAN", athe top of the world, the ancient artifact known as Noah's Ark has been uncovered.
It is said that the artifact elevates its keeper to the status of a god or it can be used to eliminate mankind from the Earth in seconds.
The race is on as two secret organizations go to battle in their efforts to recover the lost artifact - one seeks to destroy it, and the other wants enslave the human race!
It is a battle between the half-human cyborgs versus the secret organization known as ARCAM and their elite agents, the Spriggan in an epic duel for the future of humanity.
The original DVD release of "SPRIGGAN" from ADV Films was back in 2001. In 2005, a special edition has been released which features a new DTS soundtrack, the original CD soundtrack and two audio commentaries. One by the ADR director and engineer, the other by two of the English voice actors (Chris Patton and Kelly Manison).
Without spoiling the anime for the curious, I will say that "SPRIGGAN" is definitely action oriented.
The animation is very well done, the voice acting is very well done and the DTS soundtrack for the English version is awesome! The video is 1:1:85 aspect ratio and anamorphic widescreen.
As much as I love "SPRIGGAN", I feel that there are problems with this special edition release.
The inclusion of the CD soundtrack for "SPRIGGAN" is great because the music for the film is awesome. But there is a problem.
Although the back of the CD soundtrack lists 20 tracks, there are actually 27 tracks and unfortunately the 7 remaining tracks are not listed. No worry, if you were to put your CD in your computer, you can get the remaining track titles via CDDB.
And for a major release, there's a typo on the DVD features listing.
But the one thing that made me knock the rating down to a B+ from an A was that the original 2001 DVD release of "SPRIGGAN" featured really cool animated interactive menus, video portfolios of the character designs, vehicles and equipment, key backgrounds which are now all gone in this special edition release.
Granted, for those who never purchased the 2001 release would probably never know but for those of us "SPRIGGAN" fans who do know, those special features from the original release was a major addition that really made the DVD a complete package and if included with the special edition, would have made it the ultimate.
But all-in-all, aside from that, you still get a spankin' new look at "SPRIGGAN" with that DTS soundtrack. It sounded great via digital 5.1 several years ago but sounds so awesome now.
I highly recommend checking "SPRIGGAN" out! The experience is definitely worth it!"