Ranma 1/2: Big Trouble in Nekonron, China - Mania.com

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  • Audio Rating: N/A
  • Video Rating: N/A
  • Packaging Rating: N/A
  • Menus Rating: N/A
  • Extras Rating: N/A
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 29.99
  • Running time: 74
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Ranma 1/2

Ranma 1/2: Big Trouble in Nekonron, China

By Roman Martel     February 18, 2002
Release Date: June 19, 1998

The Review!
Overall Rating: 4
(on a scale of 1-5)

A nice, normal day for Ranma and the gang (a completely wacky day), is interrupted by Lychee and her elephant Jasmine. After their noisy appearance, Kirin and his 7 lucky (wacky) gods come and take Akane away with them. Of course it's all a big misunderstanding, so Ranma, his crew, Lychee, and Jasmine depart for China to get Akane back. What follows can only be described as general wacky chaos. It involves pickles, rice, flying boats, and a giant game of go. This movie must be seen to be believed.

-Artistic Ratings-
Animation: 4
Sound: 5
Plot: 4
Acting: Japanese: 4
English: 4
Music: 5
Overall: 4

-Disc Ratings-
Sound: 4
Picture: 4
Menu: 5
Presentation: 4
Goodies: 4
Overall: 4


Ahhh, the world of Ranma is a wild and wacky place. This is my second journey with Ranma and his pals and I had as much fun as I did the first time (Ranma ½ the Movie 2-Nihao My Concubine). This feature seemed to be a little more battle intensive, but was still a plain fun romp that was a good night's entertainment.

The animation on this film was not as polished as the second movie but it was very fluid and fun. The sound was great, many of the effects matched the action on the screen perfectly. I especially liked Kiran's Chop Stick Attack (if you haven't seen it, don't ask, just watch). The plot was the same as the second movie and I don't know if Akane gets kidnapped on a regular basis, but it made for a fun show. The voice acting was very good on both sides. Everyone seemed to be having fun. The music was bouncy and light and fit the film perfectly. You get to hear the rock'n end tune twice!

The disc itself was pretty good. The sound was in normal stereo and had some cool echo effects in certain scenes. The picture was pretty good, but he master seemed to have plenty of scratches in it. I don't know if they could have found a better one but it was a little distracting. The menu worked fine and easily with music in the background. This disc comes in a jewel box format, which I don't prefer, but hopefully Pioneer will release a new batch in keep cases. All the information about the DVD is on the box, but it is missing some of the goodies in its description. Speaking of goodies you get a trailer, concept drawings, the original ending (not wannabe Widescreen, again, don't ask, just watch), a cast and crew breakdown and an intro to the Ranma characters. I would have given the Goodies a 5 but unfortunately the Character intro had a slight problem (which they fixed in the sequel). You get the character info as a clip from the film plays, however if you are a slow reader you might have a problem. When the clip ends you go back to the Character menu. This was a problem with the long character intro's or when they introduced two characters at once. Of course, if you already no the characters there is no problem.

This is a good fun disc that I would recommend to anyone looking for a nice light funny movie. The extras are good and overall this will add to anyone's DVD collection, and make you want to see the second movie as well :-)

Christine says:

Overall rating 4 (out of 5)

Well, this is my second foray into the world of Ranma and all his friends. I've gone about this totally backwards--I watched Nihao my Concubine first, and I've never seen the TV show. If I miss some of the references, you'll know why. And this is my first review ever, so please be patient. I'll start with the extras and technical stuff and then review the show.

The trailer, original ending and storyline explanation were fun. I appreciated the fact that the storyline didn't give the ending away, although it would be hard to believe that Ranma, and all his friends, relatives, and hangers-on wouldn't rescue Akane and destroy several things in the process. The menu was adequate, but I did get tired of hearing the opening theme to the movie. The character descriptions were a good idea, but poorly executed. There were two main problems. The first was that they chose to show a clip to illustrate the character they were talking about. Not really such a problem, but they chose to run it while also giving you a sidebar to read about the character. I don't know about anyone else, but I had to watch the bio of Ranma three times before I stopped watching the clip and just read the bio. Also the music that they chose to play in the background sounded like a demented circus was in town.

The print that they chose for the master was, well, scratchy. I am the type of person that can usually overlook small scratches in the film, but this time I really noticed them. I mean, to the point that they almost distracted me from the movie. Also, the master looked a little dark in some places. Other than that, the sound was good (both sub and dub), and the animation was great. Some of the scenes that were animated to look like a manga were excellent and really added to the overall goofiness of the film (see the scene with Kirin tasting Akane's food for reference).

On to the movie! This is the second Ranma movie I've seen and I think I liked it more than Nihao my Concubine. Now, before I'm lynched, let me say that I have not yet rewatched the second movie yet, and I may still change my mind. This movie has some classic anime moments--"P-P-Pickles!", the Pig of Wrath (don't ask, just watch), and the Go twins. Not to mention all the goofy stuff that just naturally happens when Ranma and his friends, well, exist. I also am beginning to wonder if it's required for Akane to be kidnapped. You'd think that she'd get something other than that giant hammer, like Mace or pepper spray, to protect herself. The hammer obviously isn't doing anything. Although it is hard to protect yourself against Kirin's chopsticks.

The sub and the dub (don't hate me) are almost on equal footing here. I guess I should preface this by saying that I prefer dubs so that I can actually watch the animation. When I watch the sub, I usually wind up paying too much attention to reading, and not enough to the movie. So I watch the dub first, then the sub. Both sets of actors did a good job. Well, mostly. The one main problem that I had with the dub was Lychee. What the heck was that English accent all about in the beginning? And why did it go away, and come back, and go away, and come back . . .? It would have been easier to deal with if a) she kept the accent, b) she kept the accent and didn't speak in broken English (She's supposed to be Chinese. It just doesn't make sense that she has an English accent, but can't speak English correctly), or c) she had no accent at all.

On the whole, I really enjoyed this movie, despite all the problems I talked about. It's a really fun, goofy movie that you can spend and evening watching and really enjoy yourself. It'll also make you want to watch the second Ranma movie. Again.

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