Akira - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Akira Reviews

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February 10, 2017
With stunning animation and impressive design work on Neo-Tokyo this is a gleefully violent and action packed anime that has a solid score and a plot that for the most part is engrossing though it somewhat lost me towards the end with how frenetic it got while dealing with several characters at the same time but besides that this is an excellent film and also my first anime film which now has me intrigued about the whole genre.
½ February 6, 2017
I put Akira off for a long time because I haven't had much success with Japanese animation. It did have all the things I dislike about this style of movie: terrible line delivery, lots of things happening at once so I can't keep track of it all, characters who all look the same so I can't keep anyone straight, and more.

I was really struggling in the first 15-20 minutes of this movie because I could not follow who was who, and what they were doing, or why they were doing it. So many characters are thrown at you with no background or explanation. However, there was a point when I started to say..."wait, I think I might understand some of the things going on now!"

The second act is where I was totally on board. The sci-fi super-power element of the plot had me intrigued. I was worried about Tetsuo, and was fascinated to see what would happen next. Sadly, the third act kind of lost me again. There's some good stuff going on in the climax, but then there's a lot of other stuff that makes no sense to me. I needed someone to just explain what was happening and why but the movie wouldn't offer that to me.

In a weird way Akira felt like watching a sequel without seeing the original movie. There was so much backstory that I wanted but this movie glossed over it as if I should already know all of it. I could see that Akira is probably a film that rewards repeat viewing so you could dig into it. The style is just one that I don't particularly love, so I doubt it's something I would personally explore further. I can see where people would be passionate about Akira because it is one of the best Manga/Anime films I've watched.
January 28, 2017
A thrilling movie, who's animation is as impressive as it is violent. Akira is easily on of the greatest anime films of all time.
December 29, 2016
Visual masterpiece,sensational cartoon, ultimate Manga achievement, whatever adjectives come to your mind, nothing prepares you for this amazing film. This is truly an incredible piece of Japanese anime achievement with a dense and intricate storyline, fantastic characters and one of the coolest visual style i have ever seen in similar production. This is by far one of the most memorable experience i have lived and i would highly recommend anyone out there to give it a shot. I doubt you will be disappointed.
½ December 25, 2016
Akira may drag a bit, but it also sets a high standard and solid blueprint for the anime that follow in its footsteps.
December 12, 2016
Didn't fully understand what was going on at times, but the art and animation was fantastic.
½ September 25, 2016
at first it isn't easy to understand the movie, but if you look online for an explanation - it makes a lot more sense
September 22, 2016
*English Dub*
Stunning in every sense.
September 18, 2016
This movie is like the anime equivalent of Citizen Kane. Several anime fans and critics praise it as one of the best anime films of all time. While it might have been groundbreaking for its time, I think it's a little overrated. I would still recommend for anime fans to watch it at least once (or maybe twice so you understand it better), but there are a lot more anime films and series that I consider much better than this.
September 12, 2016
Animação espetacular. Obrigatório.
½ September 2, 2016
The animation in this film is beyond amazing. It delivers art on a whole other level! The problem is, I found the story to be both boring and confusing. There is no sense of proper story structure and the pacing is abysmal. Still, I can see why so many people like it, I just wish the story did service to the beautiful animation.
September 2, 2016
Probably one of the best IF not the best Anime Film ever.
August 29, 2016
Akira puts the most unlikely of individuals at the center of an apocalyptic event.
Super Reviewer
August 20, 2016
Dazzling, frenetic, audacious and insane. This movie gave me at least half a dozen things I had never seen in my life. You feel kind of dazed and blinded when it's over. My partner tells me that the anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion is even better and darker than Akira though... to which I replied "How the heck can it be darker than this?!"
August 19, 2016
This film is as absolutely stunning today as it was almost 20 years ago. You will struggle to catch your breath as you watch it, and may have difficulty sleeping for a day or two. It defined every trait of what I consider good animation to be, and stands as a benchmark for every other animated film yet to come.
If only I could give it more stars...
August 16, 2016
Anime has always been a polarizing medium, as it has been labeled exaggerated/nerdy/dumb or hailed as a sophisticated medium, and while I grew up watching classic anime (from the more childish ones like "Dragon Ball Z" and "Yu Gi Oh!" to more mature ones like "Full Metal Alchemist" and "Cowboy Bebop") I most of the time find them silly and cliched.But few works have surprised audiences and shown the potential of the medium, recently with Miyazaki and his studio, but the film that solidify anime/manga and even managed to leave its mark in the sci-fi genre is the cult classic "Akira".

At the verge of the XXXII Olympic Games, Tokyo has been replaced with Neo Tokyo and its filled with anti government terrorism and gang violence. With society as fucked up as it is, many religious leaders predict the arrival of a violent savior called Akira. On an standard night a young biker, named Tetsuo, finds himself in a dangerous position with the Tokyo government but little does he know what the future has planed for this boy.

It isn't for nothing that anime has earn a reputation of an exaggerated, melodramatic, cliched and at times gross and perverted, so when an anime receives the level of praise this film achieved it made me want to watch it a few years ago (plus the fact I will watch any acclaimed sci-fi film) and I got to say Katsuhiro Otomo's work is quite something. "Akira" has beautiful animation that hasn't aged a day, striking visuals, an atmosphere is a mixture of "Blade Runner" and "A Clockwork Orange" with a little Orwellian vibe and the standard anime formula, it uses a high level of violence effectively for setting a mood (it's not just there to be shocking or tasteless), an insane and trippy story that starts with promise but it ultimately gets far up its own ass, the character designs are distinct (which is not as usual in the medium as it is required) and cool looking, the action sequences are what you would expect from anime but the combination of guns blazing and supernatural powers is quite unique (I haven't seen anime fights quite unique and intense since I saw "Cowboy Bebop", which I know came latter), it's world is so creative and out there that I find it extremely fascinating to watch, the character relationships are believable (I can see where the Naruto and Sasuke bromance came from) and it is overall quite fun to watch. But sadly this impressive and gorgeous film has numerous issues. The characters lack personality as they are just stereotypes, the story is a little hard to follow at times, the dialog is at times groan inducing (not surprising for Japanese animation), the standard anime comedy is so dumb and awkward, Tetsuo is the worst written character I have seen in a while, the third act goes on too long, and the last 15 minutes go to Psychomagic bullshit territory (not surprising considering Otomo made that ending after meeting Jodorowsky) but what's funny is that it tries to come off as "2001" (when I was 14 I though it was a mind blowing finale but it really is a tacked on addition). Furthermore it needs to be said that you need to like anime or even know about it as it follows the standard formula of the medium which you may go with or you won't (the world is bizarre and they don't try to give sense to it, the action is composed by massive explosions, technology is shown as destructive but also as miraculous, the characters are as over the top as the setting, the soap opera writing and the awkward comedy).

"Akira" is one undeniably the most influential anime film ever made (it is debatable whether it is the best but no other film has achieved the same impact as Otomo's work, not even Miyazaki) as it is creative, unique, gorgeous, mesmerizing, mostly solidly written and extremely fun to watch. If you can go with anime logic then you will enjoy this film but if you can't or prefer kid friendly anime like Pokemon then I recommend to stay away from it. It is not for everyone and has major flaws but it still is powerful and highly entertaining.
August 16, 2016
very strange but enticing
½ August 14, 2016
Another WTF anime from Japan right here. Seriously, all the stuff going on in the end was very bizarre, like Evil Dead type stuff. It's not boring which is one positive I suppose. Also, how on Earth did they predict Tokyo(:ahem: 'Neo' Tokyo) was going to get the Olympics in 2020 when this came out in 1988? Hmm...
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