Blood: The Last Vampire Complete Box - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: A-

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Info:

  • Audio Rating: A+
  • Video Rating: A
  • Packaging Rating: A+
  • Menus Rating: B
  • Extras Rating: B
  • Age Rating: All
  • Region: 2 - Japan
  • Released By: Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
  • MSRP: 11800
  • Running time: 49
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Blood: The Last Vampire

Blood: The Last Vampire Complete Box

    April 25, 2001
Release Date: April 25, 2001


Blood: The Last Vampire Complete Box
© Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.


What They Say
The movie uses the full spectrum of digital animation which is said to have impressed even James Cameron. Japan's top creators gathered to make the show, which was shown in theaters using the HDCAM24P format which George Lucas will also be using for his Star Wars Episode 2. Triple disc set on DVD: Disc 1: Main feature (original film) Disc 2: Main feature (from digital studio master, using the master from the theatrical release using the HDCAM24P format) Disc 3: Bonus features (Interview with the production crew, Gallery of production material in 2D and 3D)

The Review!
The box set contains a bundle of neat things that make me feel it was worth buying this release, with the R1 American release coming out in only a few short months. To start off, the box is beautiful. It measures in at about 12x8.5x2.5, is black and has a picture of Saya on top. It opens on one side, hinged. Inside the top is a picture of Saya with her sword, in a rather neat pose (See scan). Also in the box is a book of Shot Board Files which consists of screenshots from every scene running about 26 pages. The really great item, though, is the screenplay. The screenplay runs about 121 pages, and is bilingual. Read from the left (like Western books), it is the 39 page English screenplay. Read from the right, and it is the 82 page Japanese version. There are 3 DVDs in this box: Disc 1 is the Original Film Version. Disc 2 is the Digital Master Version. Disc 3 is the Making [of] DVD.
Discs 1-2 has a simple menu: Play, Scene Select, Audio select (5.1 channel, Stereo, 5.1 channel music soundtrack [nothing else]), Subtitle select (Japanese subtitles for the spoken English or English subtitles for the spoken/written Japanese).

I found the subtitles to be interesting, if not slightly inconvenient: Only the opposite language was
subtitled. This is the optimum choice for a theatrical release, but at home I like to have everything captioned, and this made it difficult. If you are a viewer who prefers dubs to subs, you'd probably like this movie as a good 80% of the movie is in English.

The video and audio seem to be very top notch: I could find no glitches, though having not seen it in the theater, I cannot compare it to the original.

Disc 3 contains interviews regarding the movie itself, the planning, the analog part, the digital part, sound/music, the cast (an interview with the voice actress of Saya, the main character), the film recording, the digital presentation, promotion/premium day, and a conclusion. Unfortunately, this disc does not have subtitles, so it is more difficult for audiences who don't speak Japanese.

Content: Blood: The Last Vampire is a short (43 minutes from start to the beginning of credits) story about a girl named Saya whose duty seems to be ridding the world of demons who feast on the blood of humans. Her partners are American, and almost the entire movie takes place on an American Military Base in Japan. The American voice actors did about the same quality job in this Japanese movie as many do in American versions: in other words, very little of the voice acting was believable, and much of it was annoying to hear. Fortunately, there isn't much speech in the movie, and it's easy to get past the voice acting. The visuals are spectacular, going between what appears to be cel art and CG flawlessly; the fairly dark color scheme only adds to the gothic feel of the movie. All in all, the only thing I found lacking in the movie was more. By the end of the story, I wanted more story: a sequel perhaps?

Extras: Although the third disc is very neat with its interviews, I would have liked to see the trailer/ads. That the movie discs are so short and contain no extras is also disappointing. I suppose the extras I paid for (the books, the box, the third disc) count towards the extras, but I'd have liked to have been given something without having to ask. (I'm spoiled)

Audio: I was unable to test the 5.1 audio, but even through stereo, the music soundtrack was interesting to listen to.

Features
Japanese / English Language Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround,English / Japanese Subtitles,16:9 Anamorphic Widescreen Transfer,Digital Master Direct Transfer,Film Telecine Transfer,Limited Edition: DVD Box with Katsuya Terada Illustration embossed on the cover,Limited Edition: 3rd DVD - Special "Making Of BLOOD..." and Staff Interviews,Limited Edition: BLOOD booklet containing over 500 image boards from the movie!,Limited Edition: Complete BLOOD English and Japanese Movie Script!,Limited Edition: Katsuya Terada High Quality Full Color Illustration of Saya.,"Super Picture Labels" for all 3 DVDs

Review Equipment
SMC 330S (codefree), 27 Zenith (RCA connection), no additional speakers.

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