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Angel Sanctuary (2001)

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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: US Manga Corps Video
Genre: Anime, Animation, Cel
Running Time: 90 min.
Languages: English, Japanese
Subtitles: English
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This provocative animated fantasy from Japan chronicles the adventures of Setsuna, a female angel who quarrels with God and is punished by being sent back to Earth in the form of a young boy. While Setsuna has returned to the world of the mortals, she has not lost all of her powers as a supernatural being, and as she struggles to adapt to her new body, she is visited with horrible visions of an Earthly apocalypse, and is forced to fight demonic villains who understand her true nature. Released on home video in the United States in both dubbed and subtitled form, Angel Sanctuary features mature content and is not suitable for children. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Special Features:

  • Behind the Scenes Video
  • Trivia
  • Character Sketches
  • Art Gallery
  • Meet the Characters
  • DVD-ROM features

GreenCine Member Reviews

The Manga, Mutilated by Astarii February 25, 2005 - 7:17 AM PST
2 out of 2 members found this review helpful
Alexiel rebelled against God. Her body and soul were seperated. Her body was encased in Heavenly glass, and her soul was bound to be reincarnated time and time again, each time dying a young and gruesome death. At the time of this Anime, her soul is dwelling within Setsuna Mudou, a teenager who picks fights and is in love with his sister, Sara, in an incestous way. I explain this to clarify the movie synopsis they have listed.

The manga Angel Sanctuary by Kaori Yuki is an epic brimming with intricate plot details, stunning visuals, and flawless characterization. It's a mind-dazzling kick in the mouth. Kaori Yuki takes every taboo, incest, homosexuality, and twisted Christian religion just to name a small few of them, and parades it brilliantly. She takes every belief and throws it back at you. Heaven isn't all good, demons aren't all bad, Rosiel, an angel, is a lunatic, and Lucifer's sexy. No, i'm not exaggerating. Angel Sanctuary is twisted in the way you'll quickly become addicted to.

The anime Angel Sanctuary, however, attempts to take a collosal twenty volume masterwork and shove it into three episodes. Did someone not notice a problem before? The finished product is a short, choppy, loaded mess where you can't seem to figure out what is the central story here. And then once you feel like it's picking up steam and you've caught on it just...stops. And it stops with the feel that you've only just begun. That you've spent 90 minutes watching the introduction of an anime someone decided not to finish. And I suppose I should mention that the anime doesn't even follow the same story as the manga. The animation, though crisp and clear, only vaguely resembles Kaori Yuki's famous haunting style. The storyline is vague and choppy, as if everyone else knows what's going on and you must have missed something vital in the beginning.

Kaori Yuki's breathtaking vision of Angel Sanctuary is not this anime. The manga is that good. The anime, is not.

Too many issues, not enough focus by hneline1 October 30, 2002 - 9:07 PM PST
7 out of 10 members found this review helpful
The animation is ok and some of the characters are pretty cool -- Rosiel, the egotistical angel who lead Heaven against Alexiel his twin sister who helped the demons, is a well-done insane villain. Kira, Setsuna's sempai, is a smooth gang bully. But I just could not get into this story. First, the plot is uneven and the three episodes end with a cliffhanger, after which we must read the manga to find out what happens. Second, Setsuna likes his younger sister -- on the one hand, it's commendable to explore a subject like incest with a degree of sensitivity, but, on the other hand, I couldn't see what they found attractive about each other and they're both underage. Third, there are too many issues being explored, from the behavior of angel and demons to gang violence to drug use to gender identity, among others, so it's hard to find focus. This anime tries to explore too many hard issues and just doesn't get a handle on any.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.19)
129 Votes
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Anime worth wasting hours of your life on.
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One of the foremost distributors of anime (and Korean animation) to America. See list CPM #2 for more.

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