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Ninja Scroll - HD remastered

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Ninja Scroll - HD remastered - 8/11/2012 2:02:54 PM   


Posts: 31
Joined: 25/9/2012
Hi. Just wondering if anyone was planning to see Ninja Scroll in HD? It's coming on Blu-Ray at the end of the month but there's going to be a short theatrical run too, including a premiere event on the 16th in Hackney. The details of the screenings are at

It's one of my favourite anime of all time, in fact one of the first I saw, so am very excited to see how the HD transfer looks. Anyone else going to any?
Post #: 1
RE: Ninja Scroll - HD remastered - 10/11/2012 12:43:00 AM   

Posts: 5303
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Neo Kobe

Of all the anime features that have been recommended to me over time, I found this was always the most over rated. An uncomfortable experience for something so mainstream, with it's weird attitude towards women and generally creepy vibe.

(in reply to Kumadori)
Post #: 2
RE: Ninja Scroll - HD remastered - 11/11/2012 1:07:49 AM   
the anomaly

Posts: 6410
Joined: 20/6/2006
I reviewed it about five years ago


ORIGINAL: the anomaly

Ninja Scroll

Written & Directed by: Yoshiaki Kawajiri
Genres: Japanese / Animation / Action / Martial Arts / Thriller
Original Release: Japan 1993

Jubei a lone Samurai warrior lives a simple life as a sword for hire. He loans his skills out for gold or those of a worthy cause. His humble life comes to an abrupt end as his fearsome abilities begin to draw the attention of various ninja. Friend and foe alike.

Suddenly he is unwittingly sucked into the dark depths of a fiendish plot to over throw the government and as the tale unravels it seems he has previous ties to those responsible. For now it seems for now his wandering days are over and his path is clear. To cut down each and everyone of those responsible…or be killed by an enemy who is intent on hunting him down.

Ninja Scroll is a dark, mysterious and bloody tale featuring a roster of remarkable characters with brilliantly brutal and decisive fight scenes. Which I believe are the strength of the film with out question.

Jube and his accomplices come across a varied group of deadly warriors all most of whom are based off Japanese Legendary characters. From the Stone Golem, the blind assassin and various others are depicted extremely well. Each encounter is a life or death situation with parties from both sides display amazing talents and death defying wits in the blink of an eye.

In my opinion the battles are with out fault they are gripping and intense yet do not drag out and are played out with strategy and cunning. No needless moves are made and you get a true sense of life or death battles. With our hero's scrapping by sometimes not just by their skill but by luck.

In between battles and during you get to grips with our hero's and villains. The writer and director Yoshikai Kawajri knows exactly how to tell this story it is not bogged down in needless banter or overlong fights everything is well paced as our hero's try to put an end to their opponents while also reluctantly working together as a team.

The details of the main plot at times can seem quite complicated and could have been explained better but the film as a whole is simple enough and on a second watch you would have understood anything you missed the first time round.
There is always a sense of danger and deception in the air here even between both the good & bad. While these characters are all meant to be killing machines and tools of death there are subtle moments our director shows from both sides that these are indeed human beings.

Be it the disliking of each of our hero's, a deadly love triangle between the villains or the odd moment of comedy. The director gives us an insight to the weakness and emotions of both the female and male characters in quite a gentle yet powerful display way. Themes of honor, love, sacrifice and mostly the classic battle between good and evil are all dealt with. Yet again he makes sure these to not drag down the swift story telling of the film. This is at its core an action film and the subject matter demands characters that are driven by their goal and not easily distracted by their emotions.

The animation although made in 1993 still holds up today. While not as fluid as today's animation all the fights flow well and there are some memorable and quite beautiful scenes. Favorites of mine include the battle in the forest at the beginning of the film and the gratifying finale. All the characters are drawn well each with their own distinguishing features and featuring authentic traditional edo Japan clothing styles.

The sound effects are well done at times slighting dated but the sounds of swords being unsheathed, explosions and slashing through flesh all sound satisfying. The somber dark minimal sound track also suits the film well and does not needlessly distract from the action or mood of the film.

In my opinion this is a classic animation film. Simply put if you are aware of Japanese mythology you should not expect any real originality in terms of characters or plot. The film is homage to Ninpocha series of ninja Novels by Futaro Yamada and uses a few characters straight out of Japanese Mythology.

I believe it is the execution of these components, the strength of its action scenes and the swift tight and well paced story that are the true strength of this film. This is not an epic movie it is a fast paced simple classic tale of a wandering warrior and his encounters with the deadly results of the times in which he lives. A must see and a film that demands more than one viewing.


Review by



Ninja Scroll

(in reply to rich)
Post #: 3
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