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Monday, 4 July 2011

New Anime Blu-ray UK Release (4/7/11)

This week see’s Manga Entertainment UK release another Blu-ray and for the third time in arrow its another feature length film, this time being “Musashi: The Dream Of The Last Samurai” and for me this release seems to have come under the radar, probably due to the previous big blu-ray releases of “Akira” and “Evangelion 2.22” but mainly because its an anime title I’ve never heard of before until a few days ago.

Manga Entertainment UK are the first people to bring the movie outside of the Japanese area, hence why I’ve not really heard of it before, however it’s a film conceived and scripted by Mamoru Oshii (Ghost In The Shell, The Sky Cralwers) and directed by Oshii’s frequent collaborator Mizuho (Toshihiko) Neshkoro - who also worked on Ghost In The Shell. The Animation studio is Production I.G. - who, yet again, have also worked on both Ghost In The Shell Films, So the film has all the talent needed to make it a great anime hit in the UK - which im sure samurai fans will also enjoy.

Musashi: The Dream Of The Last Samurai will also be available on DVD, however it’s the Blu-ray that’s getting all the attention here.

Standard Blu-ray -> £15.99 (AMAZON UK / HMV UK) £17.99 (PLAY UK)

Plot: Miyamoto Musashi is an instantly familiar name to any Japanese citizen, a legendary swordsman who has become part historical figure and part romanticised hero of myth. In addition to writing one of the key texts on Japanese samurai tactics and philosophy - The Book of Five Rings - he is also famous for inventing the Ni-Ten Ichi Ryu style of fighting with two swords, perhaps the most obvious, internationally recognized visual trademark of the samurai.

But even with so much academic study dedicated to Musashi's life, so many books written on him and an almost infinite number of movies, anime and manga stories inspired by his legendary exploits and teachings, still questions remain unanswered. Musashi: The Dream of the Last Samurai attempts to answer one of these in particular - what motivated the great warrior to adopt and perfect his dual bladed style?

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