Mania Grade: D+
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- Audio Rating: C+
- Video Rating: C+
- Packaging Rating: A-
- Menus Rating: B
- Extras Rating: B
- Age Rating: All
- Region: 4 - Australia / South America
- Released By: Madman Entertainment
- MSRP: 29.95 Aus
- Running time: 74
- Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Amon Saga
May 11, 2002
Release Date: March 13, 2002
What They Say
© Madman Entertainment
Amon is young warrior on a desperate quest to avenge the death of his mother. When his hunt leads him to the castle of the Emporer Valhiss, Amon must endure the perils of initation and join the ranks of the Imperial army in order to gain an opportunity to take his revenge. But once within the heart of the fortified city, Amon unexpectedly encounters the princess Lichia – the sultry daughter of King Sem Darai. The Emperor hopes to exchange the princess for the map in the King’s possesion, but what is the Emporer’s ultimate goal?
Set in a barbarous world of magic and mysticism and featuring the character designs by the incomparable Yoshitaka Amano (Vampire Hunter D), Amon Saga is and action-packed tale of intrigue and adventure.The Review!
The blurb on the back provides clue to the main selling point of this title, “Sure it’s a generically bland fantasy story, but it’s got character designs by the famous Yoshitaka Amano!!”, but even that isn’t a very valid reason to pick this up.
The English tracks are both serviceable if fairly dull, the 5.1 track especially offers no real advantage over the stereo track and the dubbing is of the decidedly wooden variety. The Japanese track, apart from having a vocal cast who appear to better match their on-screen counterparts, is little better.
The video, for such an old show, is actually pretty good quality wise, with none of the encoding problems on the R1 disc. It’s content where any of the major faults are, with very 1980s character designs and animation style. Subs are provided in the yellow font Madman love so much.
A reasonably nice looking menu, with a blue, jewel orbiting a blue toned section showing scenes from the movie to the right and the bottom left section of the cover to the left. Layout is good and movement is easy.
The extras consist solely of character profiles for Amon, King Darai Sem, Princess Lichia, Ekuna, the Emperor, Ho the dragon tailed, Mabo & Damon, Alcan. Pity they can’t make up their minds what the characters are called, with Denon’s profile titled Damon. Beyond that it’s the usual with trailers for five other Manga titles. You can tell I’m just crying myself to sleep over the loss of the video image gallery…
The packaging is both a high and low point of this release. The front cover image of Amon by Yoshitaka Amano of him jumping towards the viewer is both extremely eye-catching and mystical, and also unfortunately of a standard far, far, far above the actual movie to the point it’s bordering on false advertising. The rear cover is a serviceable mix of screen captures, blurb that should have been spell checked a few more times (Of the three times they mention the big bag guy Emperor Valhiss, they call him Emporer twice) and disc information boxes. The inside of the cover follows the standard Manga releases from Madman practice of plugging eight other locally released Manga titles. The disc has the long shot of the City Valhiss Turtle used for the back cover.
Seen Conan? Seen Star Wars? Seen any number of generic live action or anime fantasy releases? Played D&D? Take a look at the cover to this disc, and you can leave early, as you’ve effectively already watched this and seen the single, minor difference. The plot is your generic and bland fantasy romp, with a young hero seeking vengeance against the big bad guy, who wears a mask to hide his disfigured face, and falls in love with the captured princess along the way. Yawn. Apart from Amon himself, the character designs are also depressingly generic too in both look and deed. It fits as a release from ‘classic’ Manga Entertainment, violent and bloody, generic and stand-alone.
If cliché fantasy adventures are your thing, this might be your cup of tea, but I doubt many will bite. I wouldn’t even recommend Yoshitaka Amano fans of a completist bent pick this up.
English 5.1 Surround track,English Stereo track,Japanese Stereo track,English subtitles,Character profiles
JNL-7001 DVD player, Commodore 1802 PAL Color Monitor