Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Eden of the East: The King of Eden (English)

So, Eden of the East the TV series didn’t end. It just spawned a couple movies to try and complete the series. Well, seeing as how I reviewed Eden of the East last year, I figured it was time to complete the series by watching the two movies. This month, we’re going to be looking at the rest of the Eden of the East series with, what I’d like to call, Eden of the East Movie Month.

Eden of the East: The King of Eden is a 82 minute Psychological/Romance/Mystery movie based on the TV series: Eden of the East. It was directed by Kenji Kamiyama and Production I.G. (Ghost in the Shell SAC, IGPX) and was released in Japan on November 28, 2009. Since then, FUNimation has picked up licensing for the film and released it last year.

The story continues where it left off from the Eden of the East TV series, and brings Morimi Saki back to the USA in order to find Takizawa Akira. The other Selecao however are actively moving to take part in the game, and a few in particular are making dangerous moves in order to eliminate Takizawa or move towards their picture of a better Japan.

The animation for this movie is very solid. I’m not sure if they had a budget to do the the entire series and the two movies, or if more money came in for the movies themselves. The animation is the same as the TV series, just a bit cleaner and smoother. The music is, pretty much, the same as the TV series so nothing new there. But, again, it’s solid overall.

The story for The King of Eden starts us off with what happened after the second missile attacks in Japan. Saki decides to go back to America to find Takizawa, and bring him back. However, Takizawa’s request to be the “king of the country” at the end of the TV series has began to take effect. Juiz is slowly turning Takizawa into the illegitimate son of the Prime Minster. With that and being known as the man who stopped the missile attacks, Takizawa is suddenly the eye witness and is being searched for about the incident. Along the way, Saki and Takizawa meet a few other Selecaos as they try to make their way back to Japan. Meanwhile, the other Selecaos start to take action and try to win the game. Now that I basically just summed up the plot for you, again, what did I think of the story. It doesn’t leave any holes and does tie up it’s loose ends from the TV series (ie, what happened after the missile attack). It kept the story going and we get more time to learn about Takizawa and even some of his past. And it does leave off on a good note. Overall, solid story.

The characters are fun to watch as well, good or bad. And we get more information about some characters like Takizawa and other Selecaos, even being introduced to, at least, one new Selecao. The major development, overall, is, again, with Takizawa. He lost his memories, and is trying to get some of them back despite everything going on around him becoming just a wee bit nuts. It’s great to see all of the major characters from the TV series come back and I hope they all will still come back in the next movie.

Now, when I watched the TV series, I talked just about the Japanese version. I decided, to be fair and, to review the movies with the English Dub. I got to say, I may be wrong about what I said last year in my review for the series. The dub is a lot more solid then you think, and shouldn’t be judged too harshly. Jason Liebrecht (Black Cat, Get Backers) and Leah Clark (Baka and Test, School Rumble) as our leads Takizawa and Saki are wonderful choices and each bring their character to life in their own way. The members of the Eden program are a well balanced mix of characters and just blend so well. Voices like Michael Sinterniklaas, J. Michael Tatum, Stephanie Sheh, Newton Pittman, John Burgmeier, and Lydia Mackay. As for our Selecaos, again, a well balanced mix of characters and interactions. With voices like John Gremillion, Todd Haberkorn, Josh Grelle, Jerry Jewell, Christine Auten, and Stephanie Young as good old Juiz. A very well put together cast, and a well put together team.

At the end of it all, The King of Eden is the precursor for the real story to come in Paradise Lost. It ties up some loose ends for us, as well as introduce us to the new conflict at hand with Takizawa’s last request to Juiz. Nothing new on the animation or character fronts, but gives off a solid dub that makes me want to watch the series again, but, this time, in english. It’s not a bad movie, but it isn’t outstanding. I just can’t wait to see what’s to come.....

Until next time, otaku on my friends....


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