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BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN

After viewing my first Anime title on DVD, I’ve become convinced that DVD is the perfect format to release all Japanese animation titles. With DVD, there is no longer any need to issue multiple versions of Anime titles. All language and subtitle options can be contained in a single DVD, thus making it easier and cheaper to release Anime titles on DVD than Laserdisc.

BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN ($30) is an entertaining Anime entry from Central Park Media. The story centers on a tournament where the greatest master swordsmen battle to determine the best of the best. A crime syndicate known as "The Organization" interrupted last years tournament, and now the participants are being systematically attacked one by one, by an adversary who uses their techniques to defeat them. The remaining participants band together to find this mysterious new adversary and to determine what part "The Organization" plays.

Like most Anime titles, BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN is filled with action, intriguing situations, and unusual characters. Unlike most American animation, the characters in BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN are well defined, with clear motivations. This makes the program entertaining and worth repeat viewing. BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN is divided into two episodes, the first to set up the situation and establish the characters, and the second to resolve the conflict. This title contains a lot of violence and brief nudity, so it may not be the best choice for a pre-teen audience.

BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN looks great on DVD. The image is quite sharp and the colors are vivid. BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN appears to have produced in the television aspect ratio and the framing is perfect.

Viewers have their choice of Japanese or English dubbed soundtracks. Both are two-channel Dolby Digital stereo. The best way to appreciate the soundtrack is to decode the matrixed Dolby Surround from the two-channel stereo. Both the Japanese and English soundtrack have a similar and pleasing surround sound mix. The language of the dialogue is the only difference between the two soundtracks. Purists will enjoy the Japanese language soundtrack with English subtitles, while others can focus their full attention on the action by selecting the English soundtrack without subtitles.

The interactive menus make it easy to pick the desired language/subtitle selection. The menus also offer character introduction and the story background for BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN. There is also a promotional trailer for other Central Park Media DVD titles. As I stated above, DVD is the perfect format for collecting Anime titles. BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN is a great entry to start off your collection.

 
BATTLE ARENA TOSHINDEN 


Battle Arena Toshinden (1997)

 


DVD reviews are Copyright 1997 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.


 

 

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