Overlord: The Complete Series (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)
From MADHOUSE Inc., the studio behind Death Parade, Parasyte, and No Game No Life, comes the ultimate "trapped in a game" anime. On the night his favorite MMORPG is scheduled to be shut down, veteran player Momonga stays logged in until the clock hits zero. The screen goes dark for only a few moments before he finds himself completely immersed in the online world of Yggdrasil. Left with all of his character's devastating powers, total dominion over his loyal NPCs, and nothing better to do...Momonga decides to try his hand at taking over the world. All the hours he's spent grinding and dungeon crawling have certainly paid off, and as he tests his strength on local rogues and legendary beasts he comes to realize that not one opponent can stand against his might. Embracing his new identity as the fearsome mage Ainz Ooal Gown, Momonga continues his search for bigger, badder adversaries. Leaving the people of Yggdrasil to wonder-who exactly is trapped with who?
Miss Hokusai [Blu-ray]
Manufacturer: Universal Studios Home Entertainment
From award-winning director Keiichi Hara (Colorful) and Japanese powerhouse Production I.G (Ghost in the Shell) comes a remarkable story of the daughter behind one of history's most famous artists. As all of Edo flocks to see the work of the revered painter Hokusai, his daughter O-Ei toils diligently, creating the paintings sold under her father's name. Shy in public, in the studio O-Ei is brash and uninhibited. Seeking to come into her own as an artist, O-Ei sets out into the bustling city of Edo (present-day Tokyo), where she encounters spirits, dragons, con men and traders.
Ghost Stories: Complete Collection
Barakamon: The Complete Series (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)
Manufacturer: Funimation Model: 35498349
After an unfavorable critique drives uptight young calligrapher Sei Handa past his breaking point, his parents decide to ship him off to Japanâ€™s Goto Islands to cool off. But instead of a peaceful paradise, Handa discovers a village full of quirky characters with little regard for personal space. On top of that, Handaâ€™s temporary apartment has already been claimed as home base by the village elderâ€™s granddaughter, Naru, who has a knack for getting into trouble. Will Handa ever be able to redeem his impulsive misdeed? Will he ever be able to write like the masters? Will the village kids ever learn to KNOCK first??
Manufacturer: Walt Disney Home Entertainment Presents A Studio G Brand: Buena Vista Home Video Model: 4978107
From one of the most celebrated filmmakers in the history of animated cinema comes the most acclaimed film of 2002. Hayao Miyazaki's latest triumph, filled with astonishing animation and epic adventure, is a dazzling masterpiece for the ages. It's a "wonderfully welcoming work of art that's as funny and entertaining as it is brilliant, beautiful, and deep" (Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal). SPIRITED AWAY is a wondrous fantasy about a young girl, Chihiro, trapped in a strange new world of spirits. When her parents undergo a mysterious transformation, she must call upon the courage she never knew she had to free herself and return her family to the outside world. An unforgettable story brimming with creativity, SPIRITED AWAY will take you on a journey beyond your imagination. "To enter the world of Hayao Miyazaki is to experience a kind of lighthearted enchantment that is unique to the world of animation" (Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times). It's a fantastic tale the whole family will want to experience over and over again.~~(c) 2001 Nibariki -- GNDDTM
Finding Nemo (Two-Disc Collector's Edition)
Manufacturer: Walt Disney Video / Pixar Brand: chamnan.d Model: 30078
From the Academy Award(R)-winning creators of TOY STORY and MONSTERS, INC. (2001, Best Animated Short Film, FOR THE BIRDS), it's FINDING NEMO, a hilarious adventure where you'll meet colorful characters that take you into the breathtaking underwater world of Australia's Great Barrier Reef. Nemo, an adventurous young clownfish, is unexpectedly taken to a dentist's office aquarium. It's up to Marlin (Albert Brooks), his worrisome father, and Dory (Ellen DeGeneres), a friendly but forgetful regal blue tang fish, to make the epic journey to bring Nemo home. Their adventure brings them face-to-face with vegetarian sharks, surfer dude turtles, hypnotic jellyfish, hungry seagulls, and more. Marlin discovers a bravery he never knew, but will he be able to find his son? FINDING NEMO's breakthrough computer animation takes you into a whole new world with this undersea adventure about family, courage, and challenges. Take the plunge into FINDING NEMO, a "spectacularly beautiful animated adventure for everyone" -- David Sheehan, CBS-TV
Jonny Quest - The Complete First Season
Manufacturer: WarnerBrothers Brand: Warner Brothers Model: 2215581
Jonny Quest: Season One (DVD)Preteen Jonny Quest, the son of a renowned scientist, is a bold and brainy kid whose life is filled with intrigue, espionage, and nonstop excitement.]]> Baby boomers of a certain age, and anyone fond of classic Hanna Barbera cartoons, might find the 40-year-old episodes in Jonny Quest: The Complete First Season an exciting blast from the past. Five years before Hanna Barbera made a comedy about amateur youths solving exotic mysteries in Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, the animation giant captured a more serious spirit from a different era in Jonny Quest. The series played on primetime television--a very big deal for animation at the time--in 1964, and was infused with energy from sundry pop trends as well as cold war paranoia and a prevailing belief in limitless technology (largely inspired by America's race to the moon). Part intelligence thriller, part science fiction, Jonny Quest made a child's adventure out of thwarting international espionage and sabotage with super-computers, state-of-the-art transportation to every corner of the planet, an apparently bottomless budget for building fantastic weapons, martial arts, and more. The fact that schoolboy Jonny, as well as his best friend, Hadji, and canine companion Bandit, were having adventures akin to those of James Bond was terribly exciting. Young Jonny (voiced by actor Tim Matheson, later a co-star of Animal House and The West Wing) is the motherless son of government scientist Dr. Benton Quest. The latter conducts all manner of research from a remote island, where he lives with Jonny, Hadji, Bandit, and chief assistant Race Bannon, a rugged fellow who tutors Jonny but also provides muscle when the group is on assignment anywhere from the Arctic to Calcutta. The original 26 episodes (on four discs) find the team battling conspirators amidst half-sunken pirate ships in the Sargasso Sea (in the pilot, "Mystery of the Lizard Men," sans Hadji), working undercover to stop a Jahilipur manufacturer of fake gold ("Riddle of the Gold"), and foiling an effort to steal an experimental, "mind-numbing" drug (and passing off a Race look-alike as the real McCoy) in "Double Danger." (The last introduces Race's hottie girlfriend, Jezebel Jade.) The slow, deliberate animation (even more stiff than Scooby) can get a little wearing, but the uniqueness of Jonny Quest as a genuine adventure-drama makes this collection a must. --Tom Keogh
Batman: The Animated Series, Volume One (DC Comics Classic Collection)
Manufacturer: Warner Home Video Brand: Batman Model: 2232560
Batman: The Animated Series Vol. 1]]> Warner Brothers' Batman: The Animated Series (1992-1995) remains a striking, stylized program that helped to revitalize the familiar comic book hero. Drawing on such diverse influences as Frank Miller's graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns, the Fleischers' Superman cartoons of the early '40s, and contemporary Japanese animation, the filmmakers stress interesting designs and cinematography. The Caped Crusader prowls a sinister, Art Deco-styled world of tall verticals, sharp angles, silhouettes, searchlights, and grid-like shadows cast by window frames. Its visual pizzazz eclipses Filmation's pallid kidvid, The Batman/Superman Hour (CBS, 1968), which ran off and on in various incarnations through 1981. Many of the same artists worked on the Batman animated features (e.g., Mask of the Phantasm (1993), Batman Beyond--The Movie (1999)), which display similar strengths and weaknesses. Ironically, Batman: The Animated Series looks better in stills than it does in motion. The artists fail to stylize the movements of the characters to match the dramatic settings, as Genndy Tartakovsky and his crew did in Samurai Jack. Batman uses sophisticated computers to combat the well-known villains--the Joker, the Penguin, Mr. Freeze, Catwoman--as well as some less celebrated baddies: Manbat, Clayface, The Mad Hatter. The bad guys cram a lot of plotting and scheming into each 22-minute episode, but the violence is kept to a broadcast standards minimum. The Dark Knight's First Knight easily ranks as the most interesting of the extras. Producers Bruce Timm and Eric Radomski recount the genesis of the series, and show their mini-pilot, which is more violent and more fully animated. If the complete episodes had matched the pilot, the series would have been much more exciting. (Unrated, suitable for ages 8 and older: violence, mild grotesque imagery) --Charles Solomon
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