Wrath of the Ninja
A Parent's Guide to Anime
For Adult Audiences Only
Review by Trent:
This was a visually stunning anime (in my opinion). It had a nice feel to it and was a bit creepy. The violence was never too bad (myself being a fan of BAOH) but if I were a parent I would not let my kids watch this. There are a few decapitations, exploding heads; and some times the violence was disturbing. The thing I don't approve of is the demons, and yes there were plenty; parents be advised you should discuss this with your children in the movie; explain what demons are (if you let your children watch this!). There was minimal sex (light kissing). There was one instance were explosions caused a girl's clothes to be burned off as well as scattered use of light profanity.
Additional Review by Erin:
Set in the year 1580, this movie is full of action, prophesies, and yes, thank goodness, a story plot with character development. I watched the dubbed version.
The unholy armies of Lord Nobunaga Oda are steadily spreading through Japan, slaughtering different clans. Ayame, the main character followed in the story, manages to escape the slaughter of her clan. Entrusted with a mystical dagger and the last of the Kasumi Clan, Ayame soon meets up with Sakon and Ryoma, two other renegade ninjas who have survived Nobunaga's attacks. The three of them combined possess three weapons that fulfill a Prophesy of the Enchanted Swords. The shadow warriors find out in the end, that they must unite and use their skills to defeat Nobunaga, and also a higher power after him. Ayame however, has to face many battles, and many setbacks before she reaches this 'final fight'. Sakon asks the question that haunts Ayame through this story: "What is it that you are fighting for?"
Personally, I found this a very intriguing story to watch. However, although it has action and a little romantic development, be prepared to watch it many times. I found that I had to follow the story very carefully, or else the next event wouldn't make much sense to me. There would be scenes that would just have people talking about aliance of clans, battle plans, etc, for five minutes or so.
Most of all, I enjoyed the character development. Views and ideals about themes of 'fate' and 'destiny' are throughout the story, and strongly portrayed in the characters. Ayame for example, believed that she was destined to fight Nobunaga, and after discovering the Prophesy of the Enchanted Swords, she was prepared to give her life to stop the onslaught of evil. Sakon would not fight however, for he could not see the purpose in the senseless fighting when nothing was gained from it.
The dubbing wasn't too bad, with very little "cliche" american phrasing. The music could probably use a lot of work however; it seemed 'misplaced' at times for certain scenes. After a while though, I believe it becomes bearable.
There is probably a cultural statement about fate and honour opinions within life in the story; however, I don't know enough about the Japanese to be sure.
Warning: There is a lot of violence, let's face it, it's based around a war. It is definitely NOT a children's movie. Some teenagers might enjoy it, but the complexity of the story might bore some. Men are killed, monsters are killed--Be prepared for blood and warfare.
There is brief nudity of a woman, though you don't really see a lot of detail.
VIOLENCE: A lot. Demons eat dead bodies (shadowed out), explosions, and severed limbs
NUDITY: Some. Clothes burned off
SEX: Minor kissing
PROFANITY: a little