Vital Stats:Title: Dororo
Japanese Title: どろろ
Studio: Touhou Company
Licensor: Universal Studios
Based On: Osamu Tezuka's classic manga
The ReviewIf you haven't read Osamu Tezuka's manga Dororo, you should do yourself a favor and pick it up. Vertical has released all four volumes of the manga in English, and although it feels vaguely unfinished-- we get so used to action manga like this that just keep going and going --it's pretty excellent, at least if you're able to get past the old-fashioned and simplistic art on a somewhat more sophisticated and serious story.
The acting is traditionally Japanese, which means it may feel a bit more surface-only than the sort that's more typical in American films, but in this case it works well: Hyakkimaru is quiet and reticent, and Dororo is a kid, so what might normally feel like over-acting works really well here. I had a couple of mild problems with the pacing, because the movie tries to follow the manga (and does so pretty faithfully), which means that we get through a couple of different "arcs," as it were. But I'd rather see them get through a solid chunk and do it very well than chop the thing up terribly, so it worked out pretty well.
All in all it was a pretty enjoyable movie, with some mildly cheesy moments. If I was going to pick watching the movie again versus reading the manga again I'd pick the manga-- since it's four volumes, it takes only a little longer than watching the film --but it's a perfectly enjoyable rendition of the series, and I'm looking forward to seeing what they do in the subsequent sequels, scheduled for '09 and '10 respectively.
IF, THENIf you like these series, you may like the Dororo film.
- Blade of the Immortal
- Black Jack
Release InfoJP Release Date: In theaters '07
US Release Date: On DVD Sept. 23
Special Features: (I didn't watch it on DVD, so I'm not entirely sure-- this is what I was able to glean via Amazon)
- Japanese language, English subs (no dub)