Berserk: Golden Age Arc III: Advent ベルセルク黄金時代篇III:降臨  (2013)

Berserk: Golden Age Arc III: Advent        Berserk III Movie Poster               

ベルセルク 黄金時代篇III:降臨  Beruseruku Ogon Jidai-Hen III: Kourin

Release Date: February 01st 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 112 mins

Director: Toshiyuki Kubooka

Writer: Ichiro Okouchi (script)Kentaro Miura (original manga)

Starring: Hiroaki Iwanaga (Guts), Takahiro Sakurai (Griffith), Toa Yukinaru (Casca), Aki Toyosaki (Charlotte), Kenta Miyake (Nosferatu Zodd), Takahiro Fujiwara (Pippin)

Studio: Studio 4°C

Website   ANN   MAL

There are three entries in the Berserk Golden Age Arc and this review follows on from one I wrote in 2012 after watching Berserk: Golden Age Arc I: The Egg of the King at a cinema. It was released on Blu-ray and DVD alongside the second film, Berserk Golden Age Arc II: The Battle for Doldrey, and third film, Berserk Golden Age Arc III: Advent.

This trilogy of films adapts Kentaro Miura’s on-going manga which has reached 38 volumes at the time of this review. It has already been adapted into a twenty-five episode TV anime in 1997/98 and a new series is going to air in the summer. With this film…

Berserk (2)

The Golden Age arc is coming to an end.

Continue reading “Berserk: Golden Age Arc III: Advent ベルセルク黄金時代篇III:降臨  (2013)”

Berserk Golden Age Arc II: The Battle for Doldrey ベルセルク黄金時代篇 IIドルドレイ攻略 (2012)

Berserk Golden Age Arc II: The Battle for Doldrey   Berserk Golden Age Arc II: The Battle for Doldrey Movie Poster

ベルセルク 黄金時代篇 II ドルドレイ攻略  Beruseruku Ogon Jidai-Hen II: Doldrey Koryaku

Release Date: June 23rd, 2012

Running Time: 93 mins.

Director: Toshiyuki Kubooka

Writer: Ichiro Okouchi (script)Kentaro Miura (original manga)

Starring: Hiroaki Iwanaga (Guts), Takahiro Sakurai (Griffith), Toa Yukinaru (Casca), Aki Toyosaki (Charlotte), Kenta Miyake (Nosferatu Zodd), Takahiro Fujiwara (Pippin)

Studio: Studio 4°C

Website   ANN   MAL

There are three entries in the Berserk Golden Age Arc and this review follows on from one I wrote in 2012 after watching Berserk: Golden Age Arc I: The Egg of the King at a cinema.

This trilogy of films adapts Kentaro Miura’s on-going manga which has reached 38 volumes at the time of this review. It has already been adapted into a twenty-five episode TV anime in 1997/98 and a new series is going to air in the summer. The three films adapt around twelve volumes of the manga and cover the same ground as the TV anime. A quick flashback at the beginning of the second film sets the scene but it’s best to watch the opener so you can figure out what is going on and who each character is. Essentially…

Berserk Anime Movie Guts Talking

Continue reading “Berserk Golden Age Arc II: The Battle for Doldrey ベルセルク黄金時代篇 IIドルドレイ攻略 (2012)”

Berserk: Golden Age Arc I: The Egg of the King ベルセルク黄金時代篇III:覇王の卵 (2012)

Genki Jason Berserk Golden Age Arc I Egg of the King Review Banner

Berserk: Golden Age Arc I: The Egg of the King        Berserk Film Poster                      

Japanese Title: Berserk Ōgon Jidai-Hen III: Haou no Tamago

Romaji: ベルセルク黄金時代篇III:覇王の卵

Release Date: 4th February 2012 (Japan)

UK Release Date: 2013

Running Time: 80 mins.

Director: Toshiyuki Kubooka

Writer: Ichiro Okouchi (Script),Kentarō Miura (original manga)

Starring: Hiroaki Iwanaga (Guts), Takahiro Sakurai (Griffith), Toa Yukinaru (Casca), Aki Toyosaki (Charlotte), Kenta Miyake (Nosferatu Zodd)

I find it hard to believe that I resisted Berserk until earlier this year. My first taste of it was an unpromising opening episode from the anime that was part of a cover-disc on Neo magazine and a Dreamcast game (Sword of the Berserk: Guts’ Rage) which convinced me that it was a simplistic medieval hack and slash title. Then I was inspired by fan fervour to watch the twenty-five episode TV series. At first bemused at the story of a guy with a huge sword in a love triangle with a bishōnen and tsundere I gradually lost my flippant attitude and got sucked into the saga of Guts.

How did I go from dismissal to full embrace?

I came to realise Berserk was a magnificent existential drama taking place in a medieval world laced with supernatural elements and populated by characters I came to care about. It also had awesome action, music and an ungodly amount of gore which also helped. When I watched the movie at a recent anime film festival it was with a sense of trepidation. If it was bad I would be pretty disappointed. Thankfully the movie proved to be a great adaptation.

Guts is a wandering mercenary who has a huge sword and few dreams or ambitions beyond surviving. All of that changes after he meets Griffith, leader of a group of mercenaries named Band of the Hawk who are working for the Kingdom of Midland in their war against Chuder. Guts decides to throw his lot in with them and develops a deep relationship with Griffith but also finds that Casca, a commander in the Band of the Hawk, is jealous that Griffith returns his feelings. Both Guts and Casca find themselves facing fierce battles and fierce emotions as they are swept along in Griffith’s rise to power.

BErserk Griffith Victorious

Berserk Golden Age Arc is the first of a trilogy of films that adapt Kentarō Miura’s much lauded manga which began all the way back in 1990 and was adapted into a twenty-five episode TV anime in 1997/98. The manga currently stands thirty-seven volumes and is still being printed. This trilogy of films focusses on the Golden Age Arc which ranges across volumes three to fourteen of the manga, the same story covered by the anime. That is a lot of ground to cover but this film sets everything up neatly.

Berserk GutsThe script does an excellent job compressing the story into eighty minutes and you do not need to know the original story to fully understand what happens.  The film charts the initial success of the Band of the Hawk and ends just after the assassination run with Griffith’s speech about dreams. While the TV anime had enough air time to give us a mixture of full blown battles with detailed tactics and the twisting court intrigue faced by Griffith in the kingdom of Midland, the film is more selective and the story is told elliptically.

Continue reading “Berserk: Golden Age Arc I: The Egg of the King ベルセルク黄金時代篇III:覇王の卵 (2012)”

New Berserk: Golden Age Arc III: Descent Trailer and Poster

Berserk: Golden Age Arc III: Descent                       Berserk III Movie Poster

Japanese Title: Berserk Ōgon Jidai-Hen III: Kōrin

Romaji: ベルセルク 黄金時代 篇 III: 降臨 

Release Date: 4th February 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: N/A

Director: Toshiyuki Kubooka

Writer: Ichiro Okouchi (Script),Kentarō Miura (original manga)

Starring: Hiroaki Iwanaga (Guts), Takahiro Sakurai (Griffith), Toa Yukinaru (Casca), Aki Toyosaki (Charlotte), Kenta Miyake (Nosferatu Zodd)

A new trailer for the third Berserk feature film has been released and it shows us part of the eclipse ceremony that comes at the very end of the Golden Age Arc. This is where the story becomes a full-blown horror movie. I found it genuinely disturbing what with the horrific landscape and human suffering. The trailer shows that all of the mayhem and carnage is present and correct and given the full CGI treatment – just a few glimpses made me remember the horrible feelings I went through at the end of the Berserk TV anime. Also released was a new poster for the film which can be seen above (the old one below). The first two films have played at UK film festivals like Scotland Loves Anime and are all guaranteed a UK DVD release at some point. Stay tuned for more information!

After Guts leaves the employ of the Band of the Hawk it all goes very wrong for Griffith and company. Casca does her best to hold the remnants of the mercenary army together but with Midland’s soldiers closing in on them their days seem numbered. Until Guts steps back into the picture. This, however, will lead him to the Eclipse Ceremony and the horror that will unleash Femto.

Berserk Movie III Descent Poster

Berserk Golden Age Arc III: Descent Trailer

Berserk Golden Age Arc III: Descent           Berserk Movie III Descent Poster

Japanese Title: Berserk Ōgon Jidai-Hen III: Kōrin

Romaji: ベルセルク 黄金時代 篇 III: 降臨 

Release Date: 4th February 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: N/A

Director: Toshiyuki Kubooka

Writer: Ichiro Okouchi (Script), Kentarō Miura (original manga)

Starring: Hiroaki Iwanaga (Guts), Takahiro Sakurai (Griffith), Toa Yukinaru (Casca), Aki Toyosaki (Charlotte), Kenta Miyake (Nosferatu Zodd)

Possible spoilers ahead. This is a new teaser trailer for the third Berserk feature and it gives us a glimpse into the mayhem, carnage and trauma that comes at the very end of the Golden Age Arc. This is where the story goes from conventional medieval combat to full on supernatural horror and I was left pretty horrified at the end which just reinforced how swept up in the Berserk saga I was. It is directed by Toshiyuki Kubooka who was the director of the previous two instalments and Studio 4°C look to have continued with their excellent animation.

After Guts leaves the employ of the Band of the Hawk it all goes very wrong for Griffith and The Band of the Hawk. Casca does her best to hold the remnants of the mercenary army together but with Midland’s soldiers closing in on them their days seem numbered. Until Guts steps back into the picture. This, however, will lead him to the Eclipse Ceremony and the horrific  creation of Femto.

Berserk Film Trilogy Gets Worldwide Release

The Berserk film trilogy has been licensed for release in sixteen countries including the UK, Canada, America, Australia, Portugal, France, and South Korea. Kaze UK announced their acquisition of the trilogy on Twitter and the Anime UK News forum yesterday and they have ambitious plans to give it a theatrical premiere.

The story takes place in a dark medieval period in a mittel European setting and follows Guts, a mercenary with immense strength, determination, a huge sword, and little direction in life. All of that changes after he meets Griffith who is the charismatic leader of a group of mercenaries named Band of the Hawk. Guts is bested by Griffith in a duel and decides to throw his lot in with the mercenary band. Guts soon proves himself on the battlefield and finds himself developing a deep relationship with Griffith but arouses the jealousy of Casca, a female commander in the Band of the Hawk, who treasures Griffith. Guts finds himself swept along in Griffith’s rise to power in the Kingdom of Midland and is thrown into court intrigues and plots all while fighting a long and bloody war punctuated with supernatural encounters.

Berserk Film PosterWhen I read the tweet and forum announcement and then reported news I was mildly excited. I’m about halfway through the TV anime adaptation of Kentarō Miura’s ongoing seinen manga and I have to say that I am gripped by the story, strong characterisation, and great music. Unfortunately the TV adaptation didn’t end on anything like a good note. What about the movies?

The film trilogy adapts the Golden Age Arc and has been animated by Studio 4°C. Toshiyuki Kubooka (Gankutsuou, Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water, and the Working Through Pain Segment of Batman: Gotham Knight) is handling direction and from the reviews and watching the first ten minutes of the film it looks solid. Interestingly the voice actors for Guts and Casca are new to the field but electronic musician Hirasawa Susumu (Paprika, Paranoia Agent) who created the distinctive music for the original TV anime adaptation created the main theme “Aria” for the movie and it sounds pretty good. Shiro Sagisu is handling the rest of the soundtrack and he has some background considering he has created the music for Macross II, Megazone 23, and the entire Evangelion franchise including the latest films. The first of the films was theatrically released in February in Japan with the second instalment opening in June.

Staff: Kentarō Miura (Original Creator), Toshiyuki Kubooka (Director), Yusuke Yamada (Art Director), Susumu Hirasawa (Theme Song), Shiro Sagisu (Music)

Voice Actors: Hiroaki Iwanaga (Guts), Toa Yukinari (Casca), Takahiro Sakurai (Griffith),

Studio: Studio 4C

WB Japan Release the First Ten Minutes of New Berserk Movie

I’ve posted a lot of trailers about it and it has finally been released in Japan and now you can watch the first ten minutes Berserk: Golden Age I – The Egg of the Supreme King.

 

This the first of a trilogy of movies adapted from Kentarō Miura’s original manga and the trailer shows a siege scene (with some censoring) with the film’s main theme Aria, which was composed by electronic artist Hirasawa Susumu (Paprika, Paranoia Agent), playing out.

This clip was released online in Japan to coincide its theatrical premiere yesterday. The video was originally posted on the Gyao website for a limited time. It was also region locked so only Japanese netizens could view it but an intrepid Beserk fan has posted it on YouTube so who knows how long this will last before Warner Bros. Japan swoops in.

The film is animated by Studio 4°C and directed by Toshiyuki Kubooka who has worked as animation director on notable titles like Gankutsuou, Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water, and the Working Through Pain Segment of Batman: Gotham Knight.

I’ve just reported this on Anime UK News so I thought I’d place it here! Thanks go out to the guys at Twitch for being eagle-eyed.