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Kino's Journey Vol. 1: Idle Adventurer (2004)

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Studio: A.D.V. Films
Genre: Anime
Running Time: 100 min.
Languages: English, Japanese
Subtitles: English
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This title is currently out of print.

Kino is a travler sitting astride the back of an internal combustion companion - Drifting through the beautiful world, The ground rolling beneath, before and beyond; This is their journey.

Across borders they meander - Appreciating the generous, Surviving the dangerous, Witnessing the whims of mankind. Staying their welcome Sometimes too long, sometimes too short; But always the same three days.

Wielding guns, knives and a piercing wit, Kino travels along - Knowing luck, knowing silence, And knowing when to disappear.

Contains episodes 1-4:

  • Land of Visible Pain
  • A Tale of Feeding Off Others
  • Land of Prophecies
  • Land of Adults
Special Features:
  • Clean opening and closing animation
  • Production Sketches

GreenCine Member Reviews

A beautiful character in a beautiful world by Cosplayer June 10, 2004 - 5:22 PM PDT
2 out of 3 members found this review helpful
Many people have writen exelent review about how incredible the world in this anime is. and they're all right. The simplicity is incredible. they should make some kind of adult picture book or something. However, what impressed me the most is the main character. It's impossible to tell how old he is, he's really short, innocent, and cute. Yet he kills and lives alone. Personally, I don't think hermes talks. I think it's like a teddy bear, that kino makes it talk. Also, and eppisode in the first disk suggests that there is a long succesion of Kinos. Will the origin of Kino ever be revealed? Keep watching!

A Muted Palette by Calafragious June 9, 2004 - 8:06 PM PDT
3 out of 3 members found this review helpful
About all I can add to the other reviews is that one should not approach this beautiful, atmospheric little show as if it were about somebody traveling around and discovering the "meaning" of "what's really going on." In each of the stories -- most of which occupy a single episode -- Kino encounters a different variation of the existential condition of being human. Some of the stories seem rather antique -- tales about unhappy kings are a bit too frequent for my taste -- and some are perhaps too intentionally ambiguous. The watercolor palette of the world where Kino and Hermes travel, is very lovely, though you may find the most abstract and "artsy" scenes less successful. I disagree with a previous reviewer; the English dub is fine, though it does differ substantially from the subtitles. For those who like grown-up storytelling on the introspective side, Kino's Journey will hit all the right buttons.

A Dark "Fractured Fairytales" with an Artsy Elegance by hneline1 May 16, 2004 - 6:46 PM PDT
5 out of 5 members found this review helpful
The first striking thing about Kino's Journey (Kino no Tabi) is that it starts as a gentle, contemplative piece with Kino reflecting on philosophy. There is poetry in the sentences written on the screen, similar to Witch Hunter Robin or Serial Experiments Lain. The music is simple and delicate, similar to Fruits Basket or Someday's Dreamers. The pastel watercolor backgrounds evoke an artsy elegance and sweetness that is not the style of many traditional anime.

Then the story twists into something like a dark Fractured Fairytales where the idyllic world becomes distorted despite the outward serenity. My favorite episode in this disc is the third, "Underneath a Sky Full of Stars", which follows Kino through three kingdoms: one where the priests declare that the world will end in a few days so all the citizens calmly prepare for it, one where the citizens regale Kino with their strange traditions, and the last where a thoughtless king causes a poet to go mad with grief and infects the land with sadness. I like the sociological messages and I like the surprise at the end.

You'll probably like this anime too if you like introspective, artsy stuff. There are some well-done action scenes but most of the thrills come from the psychological twists. I do think that a few of the stories are predictable and many of the premises are overly contrived, but I found that didn't bother me too much after I started accepting these as allegories. C'mon, aren't all fairy tales rather contrived?

Also, watch this in Japanese with English subtitles. I detest the English dubbing, mainly because Hermes' voice in English is too raspy and ugly and it started sounding like scratches on a blackboard after a while. Ugh! Also, Hermes' character is changed: in the English dub, Hermes is female, pushy and very opinionated, whereas in Japanese Hermes is male and naively practical in his comments. I found places where the English dub creates a different interpretation of the philosophy that Kino contemplates. So stick with the Japanese.

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GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 7.80)
150 Votes
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