Mania Grade: A-
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- Audio Rating: B+
- Video Rating: A-
- Packaging Rating: B-
- Menus Rating: N/A
- Extras Rating: N/A
- Age Rating: All
- Region: 1 - North America
- Released By: Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.
- MSRP: 29.99
- Running time: 140
- Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Green Legend
Green Legend Ran
By Chris Beveridge
March 31, 1998
Release Date: March 31, 1998
Green Legend Ran
What They Say
© Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.
In the future, our planet will be transformed into a strange new world where human life struggles on an Earth without rain or oceans - only vast, parched deserts. Mysterious objects from space known as the Rodo have gathered a cult following who now rule over the survivors of Earth. Ran, a young, hot-blooded boy, has sworn revenge against the Anti-Rodoist group, known as the Hazzard, for the death of his mother. In his quest, he meets and falls in love with Aira, a pretty silver haired girl, who everyone wants to possess. Caught between the overbearing Rodoists and terrorist Hazzard, Ran pursues the one thing that is clear to him, his love for Aira! What is her connection to the Rodo? Find out as our heroes travel to the Holy Green!The Review!
First off, let me say that there is indeed NO menu on this disc. And yes, I find it disappointing as well as just plain odd. I'm assuming the lack of a menu, even a simple one, is due to the fact that the entire movie was managed to be put onto one layer (can anyone confirm that it is a dual layered disc?), and probably just barely at that, and couldn't justify the extra expense of making it a dual layer just for the menu.
But, lets talk about the rest of the disc. There are a couple of things working against it unfortunately, but lets see if we can get past that. For starters, the box art is just bad, nowhere near as good as their Tenchi titles, or close to the average Dragonball Z ones. The second thing is the actual animation style. I found it similar to when Disney went and did Pocahontas after coming from their other features. Pioneer went and did something different with the style, making it less than fluid (though some scenes are extremely fluid and gorgeous), thereby trying to give it a harder feel to go with the storyline.
And that's where this disc shines through. It has a great storyline in one self contained format. The previous laserdisc box set ran for 100$ and I found it worthwhile, because I think that the story, while clichéd in some areas, are pretty out there in others, both in terms of execution and style. You don't find stories like this much more in today's anime. There's practically no fan-service, which is a great change of pace from the Tenchi ooglethon that happens at times.
Lets touch on the audio aspects for a minute. Presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 surround, it sounds as good if not better than the previous laserdisc edition. The Japanese track is great, and I personally find the English dubbed track better. Ok, ok, Ran's voice actors voice annoys me, which is why I enjoyed the English version so much more.
Also listed, however briefly on the back cover, is chapter 51, which has the directors Q and A section, and followed by the ending song without the production credits (in both languages). Not the same kind of goodies we'd find in other discs from Pioneer, but it's better than nothing.
In all, I think this disc is a tough sell, not only to new anime/dvd people (due to lack of menu, DD2.0), but also to the regular anime fans who are looking for what Pioneer generally offers. If you're looking for something off the beaten path, give Ran a try. At 25 bucks for 140 minutes of a complete storyline, it's worth it.
As an addendum, I've been informed that this IS a dual layered disc. I hadn't looked to see if it was gold on the bottom, indicating that it is. Thanks to everyone who wrote about it!
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Closed Captioned Subtitles
Toshiba CF36H50 36" TV, Pioneer 414 codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE915 DD receiver, Monster S-Video cable and Sony speakers.