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Legend of the Millennium Dragon (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
attachment.php?attachmentid=223804&d=1317143355
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109940&d=1210373637

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

86






Studio and Year: Sony Pictures - 2011
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 98 minutes
Genre: Anime

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): Japanese/English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Thai Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Portuguese, Spanish, German, Italian, Arabic, Chinese (traditional & simplified), Danish, Finnish, Greek, Hindi, Korean, Norwegian, Swedish, Thai, Turkish
Directed by: Hirotsugu Kawasaki
Music by: Ryudo Uzaki
Written by: Naruhisa Arakawa & Hirotsugu Kawasaki
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: October 4, 2011







"Champion your destiny"



Film Synopsis:

A spectacular journey of an unwilling young hero thrust into a mysterious past full of monsters, dragons, and strange hidden powers. Through a series of out of this world battles and adventures, Jun, a shy middle school boy, is transformed into a hero destined to battle evil and ensure harmony and tranquility in the world.



My Take:

I am not thoroughly versed in Japanese Anime and had no prior knowledge of Legend of the Millennium Dragon before receiving it for review. The film opens with a battle sequence between the Nobles and demon like Oni in a small village during the Heian period. Their struggle is an ancient one that never results in a clear victor. Gen'un, the mystical leader of the Nobles decides that in order to shift the tide of battle in their favor he must travel to another time period. Flash forward 1200 years to modern day Kyoto and the introduction of Jun Tendo, a shy and typically awkward middle school aged boy struggling to find his identity. Through what appears to be happenstance Jun Tendo meets Gen'un and suddenly finds himself transported into the past. There he meets members of the Nobles council who explain to him that he is a descendant of the Magatama clan and capable of the release and control of the mighty dragon Orochi a powerful mythical creature which could be used to finish off the Oni. Jun Tendo isn't the fighting type and finds the faith placed in him by the Nobles misguided. Jun Tendo's perspective is further clouded when he meets Mizuha, a female Oni warrior who shows him that they aren't simply demonic murderers seeking to destroy humankind and asks for his help. Unsure of what to do Jun Tendo must make a decision as each side prepares for the final battle.

I found this to be a mildly entertaining animated adventure. The storyline and characters aren't thoroughly fleshed out and it has a little trouble sustaining its 98 minute runtime but it appeals to the imagination and the visuals are engaging. I suspect that Anime purists will find that it pales in comparison to the better films the genre has to offer. At a minimum I would say that it has enough substance to be of interest to fans and novices alike which makes it worth checking out.



Parental Guide:

The rating is for some violence and scary images.






AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 86



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699



Video: 86


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

Legend of the Millennium Dragon comes to Blu-ray from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 31 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 2.3 Mbps.

This is an excellent video presentation that boasts visually enticing imagery that looks great in high definition. It offers beautifully crafted Japanese anime that exhibits resolute definition and clarity. The shading and lighting used results in a soft glowing outline during many segments. This is intentional and gives the video variable depth which can be scene dependent but never detracts from the high quality of the presentation. Colors utilize a limited and softer palette that is most decidedly a stylistic choice that mates well with the source in a satisfying way. The gradational stages in the white and gray tones enhance perspective and at times provide realistic dimension. Strong contrast delivers punchy blacks and crisp, bright whites. Detail in dark backgrounds and low lighting is estimable.

The DTS-HD Master Audio track features a fairly active surround mix that makes good use of the surround platform. The front and rear channels are seamlessly integrated which generates a stable and detail rich soundfield. Dialogue is clearly intelligible and suitably proportionate within the front soundstage. The surrounds are actively engaged either in support of the music or to handle the various sounds/effects associated with the soundtrack's active elements. Aside from the action sequences there is plenty of enveloping ambience that surrounds the listening position. Dynamics are excellent and bass response is authoritative, with a rich, punchy low end that adds room energizing extension to the soundtrack.



Bonus Features:


  • (HD) Concept art gallery (slideshow)

  • BD-Live enabled

  • Bonus DVD
attachment.php?attachmentid=223805&d=1317143355



Final Thoughts:

Legend of the Millennium Dragon is a mildly entertaining animated adventure that features great looking Japanese Anime imagery but suffers from a middling storyline and thin character development. It comes to Blu-ray Disc from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in a Blu-ray/DVD combo package that features excellent audio/video quality but is noticeably lacking in the supplemental material department. Despite its shortcomings Legend of the Millennium Dragon more than held my attention which may make it appealing to genre fans as well as those with a surface level interest in Japanese Anime.









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews





Reference Review System:


JVC DLA-RS50 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100 16x9 Screen
Onkyo PR-SC5508 THX Ultra 2 Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-93 Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" Series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SV Sound PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
APC AV S15BLK Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Furman SPR-20i Stable Power Regulator
Wireworld, VizionWare, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package
post #2 of 9
HHmmm i'm somewhat into Anime films and have heard almost everything except for this one. Think i'll do a little preview on line and see what this movie is all about.
post #3 of 9
Anime films are a waste of time. There's some good ones, but where anime is great is in the longer running 39 to 52 episode TV series.
post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eternal Velocity View Post

Anime films are a waste of time. There's some good ones, but where anime is great is in the longer running 39 to 52 episode TV series.

+1, just finished "Heroic Age" And loved it
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by audiofan1 View Post

+1, just finished "Heroic Age" And loved it

Was that the space opera with gundam seed characters in ultra-deep-future-warp-space? I watched a few episodes but it never really engaged me. My favorite show along those lines, is definitely the origion SDF Macross from 1982... i still get a half-tear in my eye when I hear one of the songs from it.

My favorite series though, among others, is The Twelve Kingdoms.
post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eternal Velocity View Post

Was that the space opera with gundam seed characters in ultra-deep-future-warp-space? I watched a few episodes but it never really engaged me. My favorite show along those lines, is definitely the origion SDF Macross from 1982... i still get a half-tear in my eye when I hear one of the songs from it.

My favorite series though, among others, is The Twelve Kingdoms.

This was one is not Gundam, Its along the same lines but with more of a Mythology influence but very well done. Bell Cross is awsomeLook up Heroic Age if you have Netflix its available for streaming!
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by audiofan1 View Post

This was one is not Gundam, Its along the same lines but with more of a Mythology influence but very well done. Bell Cross is awsomeLook up Heroic Age if you have Netflix its available for streaming!

Sorry, I just meant that the character designs were a cut'n'paste job from Gundam SEED. I remember bits and pieces of the show and i didn't meant to imply it was gundam.
post #8 of 9
LotMD sounds decent enough, if not horribly original by modern standards. Not every anime film can be Wings of Honneamise, though. Thanks, Ralph; I may look out for this on a sale or so on.
post #9 of 9
I am a big anime fan and have been watching it since high school days. I've seen many great animes, but never heard of this one. Some of my favorites, and worth checking out if you're somewhat interested in exploring the genre.

Samurai X: Trust & Betrayal (OAV)
Cowboy Bebop (TV)
Mushi-Shi (TV)
Monster (TV)
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG (TV)
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