The Castle Of Cagliostro

The Castle Of Cagliostro

DVD Rating: ***

Reviewed by: Gator MacReady

Read Gator MacReady's film review of The Castle Of Cagliostro

This Optimum DVD is a great improvement over the cruddy non-anamorphic Manga release. The 1.85:1 picture looks good enough to eliminate complaints. It isn't as slick as most modern animations, but the production crew only had a few months to complete the ENTIRE film after all. In fact, the only quibble I have is the presence of too many cigarette burns (see Fight Club). The slight grain and dirt is to be expected with a film of this age.

Even though it is plain, old-fashioned Dolby Surround, the soundtrack is still very cool. Sound effects, such as screeching tyres and gunfire, are as clear as a bell and come through with surprising force. Ambience is also constant, adding some dimension to the 2D late-Seventies animation. Remember, this is the original English dub, not the Manga version. The Japanese language version is also available.

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An introduction from animation expert Jonathan Clements tells of Hayao Miyazaki's evolution from lowly in-betweener animator to full-blown director and of the history of the Lupin franchise. In five minutes he explains enough for anyone who doesn't have a clue about the franchise (or director) to feel rather comfortable and not so alienated from the film they are about to watch.

For budding animators who love looking at storyboards, you can watch the entire film side by side with them. I am so not interested in this, but, no doubt, it is a great extra for those who love this stuff.

A four-minute slideshow of design sketches of all the principal characters, locations and gadgets is also included.

Trailers for CoC and Grave Of The Fireflies round everything off. It's not exactly bursting with features, but it's more than we got in the Manga release and still worth the money for the step-up from letterbox to anamorphic.

Reviewed on: 21 Oct 2005
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The Castle Of Cagliostro packshot
The extraordinary adventures of a gentleman thief, as conceived by an anime master.
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Product Code: OPTD0306

Region: 2

Ratio: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Wide Screen

Sound: Dolby Digital Surround

Extras: Introduction by Jonathan Clements; Storyboard to Screen (Multi-Angle Feature); design sketches, trailers

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