Akira box cover


Available on VHS and DVD from Geneon Animation.
120 minutes
Science Fiction
Version I Watched: English dubbed
Objectionable Content: Graphic violence, very brief nudity

Reader Reviews

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Number of reviews: 17
Average rating: * * * * (good)

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Reviewed by: Terrence Renn (2006-11-23)

It's really a strange cyberpunk anime movie, and filled with lots of strange events to prove it. I liked the story alot {to me, it reflects what really goes on in the world at times}, and Kaneda is my favorite character. In fact, it's his personality that makes the story interesting. He's a goof, and gets on Kay's nerves {as he does with everyone else}, and it's a wonder she didn't smack him in the face!

Rating: * * * * 1/2 (very good)

Reviewed by: PHENTERMINE (2006-08-13)

Reviewed by: Liam (2005-12-31)

I really liked this film. I thought it had a good plot, good characters and good action scenes. I found that the way there was no realy hero was good, making it more realistic. I found some sympathy for most of the characters, even Tetsuo.

Some people say it is ultra-violent, but I think not. I am very squemish, yet i mangaed to watch it.

Also, the attention to detail on neo-Tokyo is amazing. Every street is packed with well-animated extras, to add life to it

I love this film and hope you will too.

Rating: * * * * 1/2 (very good)

Reviewed by: A Music Student (2005-10-04)

Akira has some of the most stunning animation of any animated film in existance. It is impressive both for its high level of detail in the realization of Neo-Tokyo and in the sheer spectacle of its cinematography. Apart from that, while readers of the manga may have appreciated some of the philosophy of the ending, in the context of the movie alone, the ending is a failed attempt to work actual meaning into a hollow, albeit visually tremendous, bloodbath. The characters are one-dimensional and unmemorable, the plot is detailed and convoluted but ultimately pointless, and after an hour and a half, the ending seems almost tagged on. A good example of the failure of Akira is the scene where Kaneda drives the motorcycle of a dead gang member into a wall as a kind of elegiac gesture. Though the concept is excellent, the audience has only heard a few lines from this character and cannot feel the least bit sympathetic for either him or for Kaneda, who has been portrayed as rather incapable of emotion. Still, the movie is a good one to watch simply because the visuals are epic.

Rating: * * 1/2 (below average)

Reviewed by: Stefan (2004-09-28)

The story is set in 2019 (when this was made 2019 was distant future) The world has just gotten over world war 3, and in Tokyo, violent rioters protesting against the government fill the streets and clash with police and military alike. Martial law has been declared.

In run down areas of the city, bike gangs flourish, and we follow the story of two paticular gang members. Kanade and Tetsuo. They are the dregs of society, in a juvenile school which is there last hope of getting by. One night during a gang brawl, Tetsuo runs into a mysterious boy, that boy passes on a patters, a mental pattern of psychic abilities onto Tetsuo. A strange group kidnap Tetsuo and Kanade seeks to find out why. And along the way he untangles the mystery of how the 3rd world war started, and the mystery of the universe.

There are a few things that I dont like about Akira,firstly even though i have watched it three times now there are bits of it I dont understand especially nearer the end where it gets very confusing.Also I think it goes on for too long but it is still a great action-packed anime and a true classic.

Rating: * * * * (good)

Reviewed by: Erick (2004-04-23)

The first time you watch akira, at the end you'll be thinking to yourself "okay......what just happened here?" Because the first time you see it, it will make little, if no sense at all. But then after you see watch it again a few times (it took me about, 5) it'll make more sense. And actually, it makes a little more sense every time you watch it. Akira is basically about this gang of teens, and one of them (Tetsuo) gets taken by the army after an accident on his bike. He gets experimented on, and turns out that he has extreme psychic abilities. He escapes, and a lot of other stuff happens, but I'm not gonna ruin the whole plot of it, incase you haven't seen it yet (and if you haven't I highly reccoment you go out and rent it this instent!). But the best part of the movie, is finding out what exactaly akira is. And yes, it is pretty violent, but not THEE most violent out there, despite what you may have heard. But it is still a really really really great movie, and one of my personal favorites. I think that akira is a great movie for a "just getting into anime" fan, or a "hardcore" anime fan. With military conspericies(sp), to strange religious cults, to psychic kids, akira is one of the best anime's of all time!

Rating: * * * * 1/2 (very good)

Reviewed by: Zhukov Zapata (2004-04-07)

I'm reviewing the out-of-print Streamline Pictures version of Akira. I thought it was the Star Wars Trilogy of anime!! This anime completely blew my mind and temporarely disrupted my colon!! That's how powerful it was, I couldn't crap for 3 days!! The only problems I have with this anime is that Kaneda's girlfriend sounded like Rosie O Donnel, the picture wasn't in widescreen, and the picture wasn't visually restored. However, those are minor problems and aren't problems with Akira itself. Now back to my review, why I think Akira is the best anime ever is that it had science, subversive politics, extreme violence, and brief nudity. Those four things tend to make a great anime. Although lots of anime are like this, Akira is #1 because it was the first to do this. This blows away everything Walt Disney made because unlike Disney's fairytale cartoons, Akira had meaning and was intended for intelligent audiences. Akira also spread the message that not all cartoons and anime are for kids!! Tetsuo was the best character because he seems like a Japanese human Ren Hoek with apocoliptic psychic powers. Notice that I didn't talk about the Pioneer version of Akira because I didn't like the new dub. Kaneda sounded like a sissy and Tetsuo sounded like a little kid. Infact, I hate it alot. Everyone who thinks Princess Mononoke is better is extremely wrong. Akira will be the apex of anime forever, reguardless of what comes out next. The communist Akira fan has spoken again!! Ahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!

Rating: * * * * * (excellent)

Reviewed by: Michael Aragon (2003-12-19)

I really think Akira is just a blood bath. Its just awful in its execution! It would of been so much better. But nnnnnnnooooooooooooooo! It had to be just about voilence and insanity. But Ill be honest I saw this anime and I liked it, but then I realized it wasn't all that great. I mean almost everyone dies and only 4 characters survive the blast at the end of the movie. What a waste! But I guess u have to admire the art about it. I guess. I don't know, if u like this movie be my guess to buy it. And to everyone else stay away!

Rating: * * (poor)

Reviewed by: kitznegari (2003-11-27)

Where to begin?

This film is one of those sorts that really expects a lot of it's audience... don't you dare relax your poor little brain for a second or you'll be wondering what in the world is going on in 5 minutes... and that's definitely a step in the right direction from all of this W*lt D*sney crapola. But aside from the requirement for real, actual THOUGHT, there is eye candy as well... the artistry and the craftsmanship involved in this film are just amazing... there's something about hearing a shoe scrape down a hallway that just makes it that much more true and creepy. The scenes that give you a view of the city are just gorgeous and some of the... uh... more violent happenings are pretty impressive as well. Overall, I'd have to say that this qualifys as one of my favorite anime films to date. I'd suggest it to anyone who wants a good example of what anime can really be if it's done properly.

Rating: * * * * 1/2 (very good)

Reviewed by: Cody Hughes (2003-10-25)

The reason i bought this movie is because alot of people told me that they had watched it and loved it so I figured when I wa s at a flee market where they were selling anime i said:"Hey,I've been looking for this,so why not buy it?",and so I did.

This story mainly focuses on a bike gang,and they're friend who was tampered with by the military force,and experimented on.It is also about a group of three very ugly little kids,who have telepathy,phychism,ect.and are trying to help a scientist to awaken an experimented dead boy named Akira,who is called "The Messiah"(how corny)by a bunch of religous freaks,leaded by adude who has a freakishly large afro,and looks like he was sent from the 70's,who appears in about 5-8 scenes in the movie.

If you like sci-fi/horror,ect. movies you should really consider purchasing this movie.

If I were to numericaly rate this movie i would give it a

9 out of 10.

Rating: * * * * 1/2 (very good)

Reviewed by: Toms Kreicbergs (2001-07-03)


I first watched Akira when it was quite new, and I was pretty young at that point too so I didn't remember much when I picked it up again a few weeks ago, not long after becoming an anime fan.

I was very surprised. I had heard all this stuff about Akira being the most classical or even the best sci-fi anime, this and that, but, IMO, it was MUCH more boring than Evangelion or Macross 7/plus (of course, one can't really compare a series with a movie. . .). I discussed it with a few friends and found out they were much of the same opinion too.

1st weak point - I watched the English-dubbed version, and I really didn't care for the way it was done. I have observed that Japanese dubbing is in general of higher quality that American, and it was also the case this time. The sound of the dialogue was an obstacle to getting a realistic feel of the characters all throughout Akira.

2nd weak point. This is only my opinion, of course, but I think Akira leaves too many questions unanswered and there's a lot in it that is hard to understand during the first time you watch it unless you're very attentive. I really disliked the ending, both the animation and the idea behind it.

3rd weak point. Plot did not surprise me with anything, except the ending, and that was not a fun surprise either. Ever since the moment Tatsou was 1st taken away at the beginning of the movie, it was more or less clear what kind of story I was going to see. I see such plots in science fiction/fantasy I read and spec-fic-in-progress I've been reviewing for the past year and a half.

4th weak point. I REALLY disliked the animation/the way the characters were drawn. It was not the kind of anime I was used to, in fact, if I had not been told it was anime, I would have probably thought it was American animation. This might be due to the fact that Akira was made quite a while ago and I haven't watched any old anime except the Ultraman of the 60-ties.

Anyway, I know many people will disagree with this. This review is not objective but 100% subjective.

Rating: * * * (average)

Reviewed by: Jim (2001-05-16)

Cyber-Punk to the next level. Akira is one of those titles that will leave some pondering and others a bit upset. The story is based around a secret military experiment known only as "Akira". After Tokyo is destroyed, it takes 30 years to rebuild, thus Neo-Tokyo arises. The conditions however, are not what they use to be. Motorcycle gangs plague the city now and leave destruction in their wake.

The characters are some of the best I've seen developed for an anime series. Kaneda and Tetsuo are the two biggest players in the movie. Both characters are well dubbed, with Kaneda being my personal favorite of the two. Played by voice actor, Cam Clarke, also known as Jimmy Flinders, Kaneda is my favorite because of his voice actor. Cam has also voiced other characters such as Max Sterling from Robotech, Leonardo from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Liquid Snake in the PSX game "Metal Gear Solid".

Overall, the translation is done very well, but you have to pay attention so that you don't miss anything. With a great story, great translation, and well thought out characters, Akira is by far, one of the best anime movies out there. Add to that, the animation is by far some of the best in any animated film, U.S, Japanese, or whatever, and the treat becomes even sweeter.

Rating: * * * * * (excellent)

Reviewed by: AwesomeAlana (2001-03-11)

I've only seen this movie once, and maybe if at the time when I saw the movie I knew what was going on, then I would have enjoyed it even more. Don't get me wrong! I loved it! I thought it was pretty cool, but hmmm... I was so confused during the show. The ending was terribly sad too. :( But anyway, if I saw the movie today, I'd maybe change my review to excellent, but so far, based on what I've seen, it was cool! But also terribly odd and confusing as well. :) But, hey! I'm not a hater! Much love to ya, Akira!

Rating: * * * * 1/2 (very good)

Reviewed by: Zarkon (2001-03-04)

I absolutely love this movie. Let me tell you why:

There is one scene that occurs in outer space. In this scene, the sound is entirely suspended.

This may seem silly to some folks, but I'm simply using it as an example. The attention to detail in this film is astounding. Little touches, like mist escaping from an opening door, or individually animated bits of flying junk.

Other folks on here have made most of the comments I would otherwise make, so I'll skip 'em, except for one: absolutely, positively do not get the dubbed version. Avoid it like the plague. The subtitled version makes the story much easier to follow, and is just generally better (well, even more than usual). There was another release of Akira recently, so you should be able to find a copy again.

Rating: * * * * * (excellent)

Reviewed by: Daniel Svensson (2001-03-03)

What can you say about this movie? I am one of those how think that Akira is not so good after all. I know that it is one of the most famous anime movies ever made, but I just can't help feeling a little bored when I see it. Well, the artwork is superb and the music is cool but the story line.... well, I don't like it. But it is still worth seeing if you like superhuman mutants with great powers and some gore and carnage here and there.

Rating: * * * (average)

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