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Review: Demon City Shinjuku

What would you do if you found out the fate of the world rested on your shoulders? In October 1988, Kyoya found out he needed to become a hero and save the world.

Directing this 82 minute animation/fantasy/horror is Yoshiaki Kawajiri.

Some of the voice cast is: Brad Lavelle as Kyoya Izayoi, Teresa Gallagher as Sayaka Rama, Alex McSweeney as Chibi, Bob Sessions as Rebi Ra, Gareth Armstrong as Mephisto, George Little as Aguni Rai and Brian Note as President Kozumi Rama.

Evil took hold in the city of Shinjuku when Genichiriou Lzayoi failed to stop Rebi Ra from opening a portal to hell. After the portal was opened, an earthquake devastated the area and turned the city into demon central. Now, ten years later, World President Kozumi Rama is attacked with a curse by Rebi Ra. Master Aguni Rai, the president's protector, knows he must stay by the President's side to fight off the attack and keep him alive since the death of the President would be the ritual sacrifice needed to bring the demon realm to Earth. Master Aguni Rai knows of only one other person that might have a chance to defeat Rebi Ra, Kyoya Izayoi. Picking up the fight that killed his father ten years ago, can Kyoya stop Rebi Ra and save the world?

This anime has a novel (1982) and a 2 volume manga that ran from June 2002 - September 2002 that was written by Hideyuki Kikuchi.

The story that writer Kaori Okamura threw together was a cool idea but lacked in the delivery. The story felt rushed: Bad guy shows up, need to find a hero and then send the (very) unlikely hero out to vanquish evil. The script wasn't very good because it does just enough to get the characters from point A to point B with as little work as possible, then it's filled with crappy character banter. The worse part was how unbelievable it was that the main character could be the world's salvation. His father "a well trained master" failed, but his son that had some training (but never finished) could beat the bad guy.

The playthrough, sadly, was pretty boring. The few fight scenes it had were cool but when it came to the rest of the story it had trouble holding my attention. The entire film is built up for a big boss battle... that really isn't much of a battle. The fights with the henchman were better and almost lasted longer than the main fight.

As far as the animation, I liked what they came up with for the three henchmen that Rabi Ra had. I thought Yoshiaki Kawajiri came up with some cool character designs. Other than that, the rest of the animation looked good and flowed pretty well.

Overall, if you see this title pass on it, there's a thousand other ways to spend your time, which is sad because this could have been a really good anime.

It's rated PG-13 for brief nudity, violence and language.

1 star 

Michael Carter  - Back Seat Viewer 

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