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Samurai Champloo - Vol. 4

1 rating: 5.0
A movie directed by Shinichiro Watanabe

Shinichiro Watanabe follows his legendary anime series COWBOY BEBOP with the similarly hip and stylish SAMURAI CHAMPLOO. Blending genres and attitudes, SAMURAI CHAMPLOO takes place in feudal Japan but contains numerous creative anachronisms, including … see full wiki

Tags: Movies, Anime
Release Date: 2004
MPAA Rating: Unrated
1 review about Samurai Champloo - Vol. 4

Wonder why a lone wolf don't run with the clan

  • Jan 22, 2006
Rating:
+5
Pros: Jin and Mugen crack me up.

Cons: A lil slower, but hey, that has to happen sometime

The Bottom Line: Hey man, you're in the thick of things now - this is no time to turn back.

Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.

Samurai Champloo is made by Shinichiro Watanabe, who is also the creator of Cowboy Bebop. And if that doesn’t mean anything to you, that’s okay. If you’re going to get into this series, I recommend you check out either Volume 1 or just Episodes 1 & 2 to get started. Otherwise there’s the possibility you could become confused.

Samurai Champloo is a series totaling in 26 episodes. Now we’re about midway in the series, taking in the next 4 episodes, #13-16.

Things are a little more serious in this set.

Episode 13: Fuu, Mugen, and Jin are taking a short cut. Hmm, why does this already sound like a bad idea? Suddenly they run into people from Mugen’s past and we catch glimpses of his memories and insights as to why he is the way he is, a stray dog that’s gotten off of a leash…

Episode 14: This is the continuation of the previous episode, tying up a lot of loose ends and even more glimpses into Mugen’s past…but even those that seem trustworthy might not be after all…

Episode 15: By far the best episode just by sheer entrainment value. The three have finally made it to a town and with money in their pockets (…sort of) Mugen and (surprisingly enough) Jin bolt off to the red light district. Guess both guys have a little “tension” they need to get rid of. But as usual they run into more than they wanted to and are forced to find a resolution. Both Jin and Mugen absolutely cracked me up in this episode – Jin for his odd behavior and Mugen from, well, his horniness. Ok, next episode already, hahaha.

Episode 16: Once more things have slowed down. Everyone is cross with each other, and finally the group splits up entirely and you have to wonder what Fuu is thinking. But there have been rumors of strange things in these mountain woods and it’s not long before each character finds something that puts them in a sticky situation…so whose problem is the rumor? Hmm…

The Rest

Considering how it’s the same series, this section is going to be a constant for all Samurai Champloo reviews. Just fyi. =P

When it comes to animation, if you’re familiar with Cowboy Bebop then you can immediately see the resemblance between Spike and Mugen. Either way, Watanabe has a certain style that even I identified (thinking, “…This kinda looks like it was done by the same guy that did Cowboy Bebop...”) before I even knew who was behind the whole thing. Though I may not have thought Cowboy Bebop was the best thing since sliced bread, I know good animation when I see it. I love the coloring, attention to detail, setting, sounds, everything. Some of the bad guys look creepy, but then again they’re bad guys so there’s no problem there.

Usually when people comment on the voices in anime, the Japanese cast usually wins. However, though I do appreciate the series in its original form, I have to admit that I really like the dub as well and almost prefer it only because I like Mugen’s English voice instead of his Japanese one (it’s the same guy as Spike, fyi, but he does Mugen’s attitude so well he’s perfect – and I’m biased anyway). Because of the well-done English dub, I think that you can happily go with whatever makes you comfortable.

I’d like to make mention of the little transitions done in the stories when switching from what one character is doing to what the next one is up to. With the same sound a DJ makes when spinning stuff on a turntable, the pictures flash back and forth (and sometimes in more creative ways) to create some of the most interesting transitions between scenes that I’ve ever encountered. At first I wasn’t sure I liked it, but it does add a little more spice (if possible) to the show and just enhances its uniqueness even more. However, there are less of these in the more serious and toned down episodes, so it shows that the animators knew when good times for these transitions were and when to avoid them. Good call!

As for the whole series, keep in mind that there is occasional fighting, blood spilling, swearing, and a bit of nudity here and there. So keep the kids in bed, this is for audiences that are a bit more mature.

Episodes in Volume 4:
13. Misguided Miscreants – Part 1
14. Misguided Miscreants – Part 2
15. Bogus Booty
16. Lullabies of the Lost – Verse 1

NT

The Volumes:
Volume 1
Volume 2
Volume 3
Volume 5
Volume 6
Volume 7


The Episodes:
Episodes 1 & 2
Episodes 3 & 4
Episodes 5 & 6
Episodes 7 & 8


Recommended:
Yes

Suitability For Children: Not suitable for Children of any age

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