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Requiem from the Darkness Vol. 1: Turmoil Of The Flesh (2004)

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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Geneon/Pioneer
Genre: Anime, Horror Anime
Running Time: 100 min.
Languages: English, Japanese
Subtitles: English
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The setting is the end of the Edo period amid political strife and human suffering. Young Momosuke, an aspiring author, sets out on a journey to collect 100 stories to make into a book. Right away he meets up with a trio of outlaws: Mataichi the Trickster, Ogin the Puppeteer and Nagamimi the Bird Caller. As they travel, the group encounters the most twisted and horrible parts of human nature. It is the task of this group to punish each person in a manner fitting their crimes  a gruesome undertaking to say the least... Thus, the bells of the requiem are heard throughout the land..

GreenCine Member Reviews

Well, it IS dark... by BrettJB October 5, 2004 - 8:00 PM PDT
7 out of 7 members found this review helpful
I missed the fansubs on this one, but had heard a lot of buzz surrounding it, so I rented.

It's got a gorgeous, stylistic animation quality. And a gorgeous, stylistic female character, but that's neither here nor there in terms of this review... ;)

The descriptions of the anime that I've read are a bit misleading-- they portray it as the story of an author, a trickster, a puppeteer, and a bird caller. They go traipsing about the land, witnessing evil and appointing themselves judge, jury, and executioner... It's a bit more complicated than that (thankfully, or I'd have stopped watching after the first episode!)

The author, Momosuke, is in search of material for his "Hundred Stories" book. He stumbles upon the other three, seemingly by accident. As the story progresses, you get the sense that somehow his fate is intertwined with this rogue trio-- despite their best efforts to be rid of him!

I hate spoilers, so I won't give away more detail than that. Nor will I list the depths of human depravity and despair the show is willing to plumb-- suffice it to say, this is not the anime for you to watch if you've missed your Prozac dose, or you think that Sailor Moon is the epitome of what all anime should be!

It is very dark. It takes an unflinching look at some of the most heinous acts of human evil, and holds them up for the world to see. Yet, somehow, this dark trio (with clumsy, tag-along Momosuke for comic relief) provides at least a sense of closure-- not hope, renewal, or anything remotely approaching happiness-- to each of these mini-tragedies. Along the way, we begin to gain an understanding of the backgrounds and baggage carried by each of the main characters as well.

I wasn't sure what to expect when I rented this. This certainly wasn't what I thought I was getting-- I was thinking more along the lines of Vampire Princess Miyu, I suppose...

It's not a bad anime, to be certain. It is not going to be everyone's cup of tea, however... I strongly caution those who are just beginning to get into anime to think twice before renting-- put it in your queue, but down near the bottom. Get you feet wet first. Again, those who prefer more action oriented shonen, or cutesy/romantic shoujo, or just plain silly anime also need not apply.

You like dark? You like despair? Are you willing to view something you might not like at first (I didn't!), but that just might begin to grow on you by the time you finish the disc? Then this just might work for you...

I'm definitely going to get the second, and probably the third disc of the series before I make up my mind. I'm still not sure, and I think that's half the appeal for me.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.93)
61 Votes
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