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REVIEW: Samurai 7 Blu-Ray


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ZiharkXVI



Joined: 29 Jan 2009
Posts: 151
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:27 am Reply with quote
With all due respect to the review, I had a double take at the final line calling this one of the most epic anime of the 2000s. I personally hated this series, found the animation strange even back then, disliked the variants from the source material (plot being the most inexplicable, but characters like the messianic leader also annoyed me). If you've seen the Seven Samurai, it just doesn't even come close to the feelings evoked. Heck, the western adaptation Magnificent Seven is even superior to this tripe. I'm not sure the review explained how this anime becomes so epic - so I just thought I'd post my general disagreement. I probably hate it subjectively more than it deserves because my expectation was much higher, but objectively I don't think we are in "epic" territory.
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donhumberto



Joined: 19 Jan 2017
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:38 am Reply with quote
ZiharkXVI wrote:
With all due respect to the review, I had a double take at the final line calling this one of the most epic anime of the 2000s. I personally hated this series, found the animation strange even back then, disliked the variants from the source material (plot being the most inexplicable, but characters like the messianic leader also annoyed me). If you've seen the Seven Samurai, it just doesn't even come close to the feelings evoked. Heck, the western adaptation Magnificent Seven is even superior to this tripe. I'm not sure the review explained how this anime becomes so epic - so I just thought I'd post my general disagreement. I probably hate it subjectively more than it deserves because my expectation was much higher, but objectively I don't think we are in "epic" territory.

Well, that's... your opinion dude Rolling Eyes
I also watched the original Kurosawa film (which looked pretty ridiculous and cheap, tbh)and would take the anime any day ... And, yes, "epic" is a pretty good word to describe it. Also ambitious and unique, something that's sadly lacking in most of today's anime series
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whiskeyii



Joined: 29 May 2013
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:06 pm Reply with quote
I remember being fairly underwhelmed by this when it aired years ago on the Sci-Fi(?) channel. Without having seen the original movie it was based on, I thought the *idea* was a solid one, but the execution seemed way more interested in the mecha world building than actually building on much plot (Katsuhiro aside). I do remember being kind of annoyed with Kirara, though; I don't think I cared much for her one-sided pining, and I suspect I'd look less favorably on Katsuhiro's very...persistent...pursuit of Kirara nowadays.

My strongest impression of the series overall though was that it was a very typical "Gonzo" anime; lots of flash and style, an intriguing premise, and ultimately squandering all that with an ending that really failed to coalesce for me. Though to be fair, I don't think I was expecting the ending to be quite so spoiler[ "everybody dies"] since I hadn't seen the original movie.
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Greed1914
It's Over 9000!It's Over 9000!


Joined: 28 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:25 pm Reply with quote
whiskeyii wrote:
I remember being fairly underwhelmed by this when it aired years ago on the Sci-Fi(?) channel.


It was on IFC at first, and then Toonami years later. The first disc I ever rented from Netflix was the last volume of this series because I was watching it at home on IFC, but had to miss the last few episodes because I moved to my college dorm and no longer had access to that channel.



I'm not too surprised that this re-release is pretty bare-bones. Several new releases recently have done blu-ray + digital as a combo with no DVD. I don't think Funimation has officially retired DVDs like Sentai, but a quiet phase out seems to be happening. Plus, this is in a product line designed to try to get the last bit of sales possible with a low price point, so I'm sure cutting costs is a factor. The lack of commentaries isn't that odd to me. The downside of these cheaper rereleases is that some customers might decide to wait because they know that eventually a much cheaper version will come along. They might be a little more willing to buy early if that cheaper version doesn't have as many extras.
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Heishi



Joined: 06 Mar 2016
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:29 pm Reply with quote
Since this series is getting a bit of a negative reception by some people here, I thought I'd like to take the opportunity to voice some praise for this series, which I feel is one of the underrated gems of 2004.

I didn't notice any animation issues apart from the obvious CG in some instances.
I also really liked some of the characters, Kikuchiyo and Kyuzo being my favorite characters.
I was a little bummed when Kirara and Okamoto didn't end up together.
I also really liked the music by Kaoru Wada(of Casshern Sins and Inuyasha fame). I feel this one her best works to date.

I think this one of the best iterations of the classic Akira Kurosawa film yet and I think this is one of the better shows Gonzo produced and would happily take a spin off or sequel to this over tripe like Strike Witches, any day.
Glad this made it to BD.


Last edited by Heishi on Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:50 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Takkun4343



Joined: 19 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:37 pm Reply with quote
Watched this show when it came on Toonami back in 2012 and really enjoyed it in spite of its flaws. Speaking of which...
Quote:
...and when the animation breaks down, it completely breaks down, resulting in one early episode that looks rough to the point of seeming unfinished.

If you're talking about episode 7, it was animated like that on purpose. The rough off-model style is just how Hisashi Mori (the sole key animator for the first act) likes to animate things. Takizawa even said himself in Anime Insider's March 2006 issue that it was his choice to have the episode animated like that, bringing up an analogy to how a really good actor that doesn't look conventional is more to his preference than a more conventional-looking actor who doesn't have the same level of acting chops.
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donhumberto



Joined: 19 Jan 2017
Posts: 416
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:41 pm Reply with quote
Heishi wrote:
Since this series is getting a bit of a negative reception by some people here, I thought I'd like to take the opportunity to voice some praise for this series, which I feel is one of the underrated gems of 2004(along with another favorite of mine).

I didn't notice any animation issues apart from the obvious cg in some instances.
I also really liked some of the characters, Kikuchiyo and Kyuzo being my favorite characters.
I was a little bummed when Kirara and Okamoto didn't end up together.
I also really liked the music by Kaoru Wada(of Casshern Sins and Inuyasha fame). I feel this one her best works to date.

I think this one of the best iterations of the classic Akira Kurosawa film yet and I think this is one of the better shows Gonzo produced and would happily take a spin off or sequel to this over tripe like Strike Witches, any day.
Glad this made it to BD.

Glad to see I'm not alone. I also love the series to bits and although I wouldn't put it on the same level as Gankutsuou (Gonzo's masterpiece and one of my top 3 anime series ever) it was superb on every level (and good call on the ost, it was great and one of Wada Karou's best for sure)
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Heishi



Joined: 06 Mar 2016
Posts: 919
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:56 pm Reply with quote
donhumberto wrote:
Heishi wrote:
Since this series is getting a bit of a negative reception by some people here, I thought I'd like to take the opportunity to voice some praise for this series, which I feel is one of the underrated gems of 2004(along with another favorite of mine).

I didn't notice any animation issues apart from the obvious cg in some instances.
I also really liked some of the characters, Kikuchiyo and Kyuzo being my favorite characters.
I was a little bummed when Kirara and Okamoto didn't end up together.
I also really liked the music by Kaoru Wada(of Casshern Sins and Inuyasha fame). I feel this one her best works to date.

I think this one of the best iterations of the classic Akira Kurosawa film yet and I think this is one of the better shows Gonzo produced and would happily take a spin off or sequel to this over tripe like Strike Witches, any day.
Glad this made it to BD.

Glad to see I'm not alone. I also love the series to bits and although I wouldn't put it on the same level as Gankutsuou (Gonzo's masterpiece and one of my top 3 anime series ever) it was superb on every level (and good call on the ost, it was great and one of Wada Karou's best for sure)


I haven't seen Gankustsuou, but hearing you say that, it sounds like pretty good show. Though I also would put Last Exile as another Gonzo classic.
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Scion Drake



Joined: 25 Nov 2017
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 6:49 pm Reply with quote
Huh I remember watching this on Toonami. I liked it well enough, fun show.
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Key
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Joined: 03 Nov 2003
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Location: Indianapolis, IN (formerly Mimiho Valley)
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 7:30 pm Reply with quote
Takkun4343 wrote:
If you're talking about episode 7, it was animated like that on purpose. The rough off-model style is just how Hisashi Mori (the sole key animator for the first act) likes to animate things. Takizawa even said himself in Anime Insider's March 2006 issue that it was his choice to have the episode animated like that, bringing up an analogy to how a really good actor that doesn't look conventional is more to his preference than a more conventional-looking actor who doesn't have the same level of acting chops.

Interesting, though I flatly disagree with him. I've seen other series do something similar to that and it always looks sloppy to me.
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Takkun4343



Joined: 19 Jul 2007
Posts: 782
Location: Gahanna, Ohio
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 9:27 pm Reply with quote
Key wrote:
Takkun4343 wrote:
If you're talking about episode 7, it was animated like that on purpose. The rough off-model style is just how Hisashi Mori (the sole key animator for the first act) likes to animate things. Takizawa even said himself in Anime Insider's March 2006 issue that it was his choice to have the episode animated like that, bringing up an analogy to how a really good actor that doesn't look conventional is more to his preference than a more conventional-looking actor who doesn't have the same level of acting chops.

Interesting, though I flatly disagree with him. I've seen other series do something similar to that and it always looks sloppy to me.

Hey, everyone's got different preferences and all that.
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donhumberto



Joined: 19 Jan 2017
Posts: 416
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 4:35 am Reply with quote
Heishi wrote:


I haven't seen Gankustsuou, but hearing you say that, it sounds like pretty good show. Though I also would put Last Exile as another Gonzo classic.

By all means, check out Gankutsuou asap. I'm pretty sure if you liked Samurai 7 and Last Exile you'll love it Wink
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Merxamers



Joined: 09 Dec 2013
Posts: 659
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:54 am Reply with quote
It's been a while since I've seen this one; it was actually one of the first anime i ever watched, and i remember liking the action content quite a bit.

On the other hand, i remember not liking that characterization of Kanbei, especially now that I've seen the original film. Anime Kanbei just comes off like this arrogant jerk that everyone else falls over themselves to praise. I also felt a bit weird about how the romantic subplot resolves itself; I don't necessarily think that spoiler[the pining boy should have "gotten the girl," but the age gap replacement] just felt uncomfortable to me.
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CrownKlown



Joined: 05 May 2011
Posts: 1634
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:05 pm Reply with quote
ZiharkXVI wrote:
With all due respect to the review, I had a double take at the final line calling this one of the most epic anime of the 2000s. I personally hated this series, found the animation strange even back then, disliked the variants from the source material (plot being the most inexplicable, but characters like the messianic leader also annoyed me). If you've seen the Seven Samurai, it just doesn't even come close to the feelings evoked. Heck, the western adaptation Magnificent Seven is even superior to this tripe. I'm not sure the review explained how this anime becomes so epic - so I just thought I'd post my general disagreement. I probably hate it subjectively more than it deserves because my expectation was much higher, but objectively I don't think we are in "epic" territory.


Look I wont deny that Kurosawa was one of the greatest directors of all time, and got royally jobed by the academy, as did many other legendary directors : Bergman, Kubrick, HItchcook, etc. But Seven Samurai was meh. And it was that for one reason that I think the anime stand out, the title characters. In the original you essentially had 3 unique characters, and the last 4 were pretty much just generic interchangeable characters. In the anime, all 7 samurai actually felt like unique distinct characters, and the anime actually did a good job of making me care about each one vs the original, other than the kambei katsusihiro, and of the legendary Toshiro Mifune, I could care less about the other 4. And considering this is an ensemble piece that focuses on the characters as much as anything, I think its pretty big let down.

I also appreciated how Samurai 7 , Gakutsuou, and even Romeo X Juliet, managed to bring in a Sci Fi element without losing too much of the original. Not to mention overall the animation, character design and music were all good. While not perfect, I think Samurai 7 was a pretty successful adaptation and has held up well.

If you want to complain about a crappy adaptation, Id recommend checking out the ps2 game.
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SpacemanHardy



Joined: 03 Jan 2012
Posts: 2412
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 1:13 pm Reply with quote
Theron wrote:
Funimation's re-release of the series is a bare-bones affair, with only clean theme songs and promo videos for extras; in other words, it lacks the commentaries included on Samurai 7 releases over the last decade


Are you certain about that? Both RightStuf and Funimation's shop list the set as still having the commentaries and promo video.

The commentaries should be for episodes 1 and 14. Perhaps you accidentally checked the wrong disc?
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