Tenchi Muyo: Tenchi Muyo In Love - Mania.com

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  • Audio Rating: A
  • Video Rating: A+
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Menus Rating: A
  • Extras Rating: N/A
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.
  • MSRP: 29.99
  • Running time: 95
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Non-Anamorphic Widescreen
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Tenchi Muyo

Tenchi Muyo: Tenchi Muyo In Love

By Chris Beveridge     September 30, 1997
Release Date: September 30, 1997

Tenchi Muyo: Tenchi Muyo In Love
© Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.

What They Say
The merciless criminal Kain has escaped from sub-space where he has been captured! Kain, who was deprived of his freedom by the Jurai royal family and GP (galaxy police), has demolished the GP headquarters and attacked the Jurai King. His next target is earth! Around the same time on earth, Tenchi's house has suddenly disappeared. What's even worse is that Tenchi's body is disappearing too! Something must have happened in the past to Tenchi's mother, Achika. So the gang must now leave for a journey to the year 1970.

The Review!
The first Tenchi Muyo movie, based on the 13 episode OVA series and the 26 episode TV series (all available from Pioneer on laser disc, and hopefully to be on DVD sometime this year as well), is one of the best of the first years worth of DVD's available.

At least, technically speaking.

Anime fans who buy this disc already most likely know of Tenchi and his friends and adventures from the laser disc and VHS tapes of the above mentioned series. And this movie is extremely well done in that respect, showing us a new twist on the family and past of Tenchi. Before this, I barely gave second thought to his father, who comes off as a very strong pervert in the regular shows. But here, he's given more confidence in both himself and his abilities... more depth to a character who normally would not receive it except during a filler episode in a TV show.

But for non-anime fans who may have picked this disc up, they're most likely confused by a lot of things. I don't say this to discourage people from picking it up - if you have a LD combo player, check out the recently released OVA compilations to catch up if you enjoy the DVD, or by all means write Pioneer and ask for them to be put on DVD. This movie takes place after so much information from the regular series, it's understandable that many people who have picked it up based on others recommendations will be disappointed in the story itself.

But for it's technical merits, it's outstanding. The colors and flow of the animation, most noticeably in the action sequence, show just how meaningless Disney's argument against DVD being good for animation is. It's also most noticeable during those sequences just how incredible the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack is. It's so clear and crisp, you can feel the explosions and the music flowing extremely well in your home theater.

The disc itself is also packed with some great goodies, also considering that this was one of the first discs released by Pioneer domestically. The menu can be played in both Japanese and English (text is changed as well between languages), and when you move to a menu selection, a little piece of animation plays in the chosen language.

The disc contains a couple of trailers and TV spots, both of which appeal to anime fans a lot, and movie buffs in general. Seeing how a movie was advertised in its country of origin is always interesting.

Christopher Franke, of the group Tangerine Dream and now musical composer for Babylon 5, did the soundtrack for this movie as well. There is his trademark style that will bring echoes of Babylon 5 to mind, but it's well enough apart that it fits the anime mold very well.

Kudos to Pioneer for bringing east and west together in the production of the movie, and in the production of a top-notch DVD release.

English language and Japanese language in DD 5.1 channel sound,English and Japanese subtitles and credits,Closed captioned in English,Production notes,Directors comments (not a commentary),An interview with musical composer Christopher Franke,Theatrical trailers,TV spots

Review Equipment
Toshiba CF36H50 36" TV, Pioneer 414 codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE915 DD receiver, Monster S-Video cable and Sony speakers.


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