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Akira [Blu-ray]

4.4 out of 5 stars 1,176 customer reviews

Additional Blu-ray options Edition Discs
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(Feb 24, 2009)
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$45.85 $13.98
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• PRODUCT ALERT: The booklet and slipcover that were included in early versions of this title are no longer available from

Editorial Reviews

Product Description


Additional Features

Often described as the movie that created a mass audience for Japanese animation in America, Katsuhiro Otomo’s Akira (1988) has been eagerly awaited on Blu-Ray. The film has been remastered for 1080p HD, which showcases Otomo's flamboyant palette and the translucent colors he uses for the opulent signage of Neo-Tokyo and the trails left by the thugs' racing motorcycles. The film probably looks better in Blu-ray than it did in its initial release as dust, dirt and scratches have been digitally removed, and the state-of-the-art sampling and bit rates reveal previously undetectable elements in the complex soundtrack. There are fewer extras than 2001 Special Edition: two trailers, two teasers, and a TV commercial. But the clarity of the Blu-ray transfer makes it easier to read Otomo's storyboards. Akira remains a landmark film in the history of Japanese animation and anime fandom: the Blu-ray edition is a must-have not just for otaku, but for anyone interested in animation. (Rated R: Graphic violence, violence against women, brief nudity, profanity, grotesque imagery, tobacco and drug use) --Charles Solomon

Special Features

  • Teasers 1 and 2
  • Trailers 1 and 2
  • TV commercial
  • TV storyboards
  • Initial pressing contains 32-page booklet and slipcase

Product Details

  • Actors: Mitsuo Iwata
  • Format: Animated, Blu-ray, Color, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1), Japanese (Dolby TrueHD 5.1), Japanese (PCM Stereo), English (Dolby TrueHD 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Japanese
  • Dubbed: English, Japanese
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Honneamise
  • DVD Release Date: February 24, 2009
  • Run Time: 124 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,176 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001LMU182
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #57,016 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Akira [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray
Since Amazon condenses the reviews of multiple formats into one pile, I hope this one stands out. It covers the new 25th Anniversary Blu-ray/DVD combo pack from Funimation, NOT Bandai'a 2009 Blu-ray or one of the many earlier DVD releases. I was able to get an advance copy from Funimation and also used it to write a separate full-length review of this title, listed below.

"Akira" still holds up perfectly well after 25 years. The film condenses a LOT of material into two hours; not surprising, since writer/director Katsuhiro Otomo's long-running manga series was still being written after its 1988 release. This epic, violent, mind-melting slice of animated history is chock full of terrific visuals, an amazing soundtrack and, of course, the sci-fi tinged story that introduced many to Kaneda, Tetsuo and company. Those new to the film will find it an exhausting experience, but don't give up: the eye candy will suck you in, but there's a real heart and soul to the story that has made countless fans worldwide return to "Akira" again and again. It's practically the grandfather of modern anime.

But that's not what most people want to know; they're probably just curious how this Blu-ray stacks up to previous releases (pretty well, as it turns out). Video quality is ever-so-slightly better than Bandai's 2009 Blu-ray: the image is no longer "picture-boxed" (thin black bars on all four sides) and the colors appear more well-defined and evenly saturated. It's the same 2001 master, so don't expect a night-and-day difference...but it's there. On the audio front, we get two excellent DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio versions of the original Japanese track and the 2001 Pioneer English dub, as well as a new DTS-HD 2.0 Master Audio version of the older 1998 Streamline English dub.
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Format: Blu-ray


"AKIRA", the 1988 anime film that became the masterpiece of mangaka and director Katsuhiro Otomo.

My first viewing of "AKIRA" was back in 1993. I have to be truthful, it was one of those films that I had to watch several times because I felt I was missing something integral. Each time I watched the film, there was always something new that I picked up and for anyone who has seen this animated film, just how much was put into the animation, the detail for an animated film.

In 1988, Disney had "Oliver & Friends" and being touted as the first animation to utilize hand drawn art and computerized graphics and as the film incorporated some darkness that may scare the kiddies, in Japan, "AKIRA" was a film that would set records in the Summer and eventually get a limited release in theaters.

The film would surprise and shock people because this was not a children's animation, this was geared for adults. And did it look awesome at that time!

Flash forward over 20-years later for the Blu-ray release!


For one, the film is now in 1080p and 16×9. Having seen this film evolve with each release from the VHS to LaserDisc and then DVD and now Blu-ray, for a film created back in 1988, "AKIRA" just looked amazing.

From the action scenes and just watching it on a large screen, I was amazed of how great it looked.
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32 Comments 334 of 369 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Akira is one of those movies that you never forget. The images are extremely powerful and graphic, so that they stick with you long after the movie is over. Despite its sometimes-confusing plot line, this movie is a wonderfully written, chilling look into the future, and into humanity as a whole. The movie more or less centers around a teenage biker gang in Neo-Tokyo, thirty-years after World War III. The main characters, Kaneda and Tetsuo, are two childhood friends who are constantly in competition with each other (Tetsuo being the weaker, taunted one.) Regardless, Tetsuo still looks up to Kaneda. As the introduction moves out of the chase scene, an interesting encounter with an odd looking child (who awakens the physic abilities lying dormant within Tetsuo's mind) truly begins the movie.
The animation quality in this movie is almost enough of a reason to buy it. The detail is incredible, umparalled even by Disney?s standards. No one background or setting is used twice, and the environment is in constant change, be it blinking lights or a person exiting a random building. Oddly enough, the Bladerunner-esque buildings throughout the movie also help to establish the feeling of urgency, and the sensation of teetering on the edge of something great, something that we cannot possibly understand. The characters also move in a realistic, smooth motion, something that is missing from many anime television shows, like Pokemon or Digimon.
The music in this movie is also an aspect that really stands out, with a sound all its own. With this new DVD cleanup, you can hear every bell, whistle and drum beat. It sounds more Japanese than most animes out there, and that is not a bad thing.
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2 Comments 101 of 115 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Why is this still over $30?
It's out of print (as well as the blu-ray) because Bandai's anime department is now defunct. The only way it will ever get re-issued is if another company buys the property gets permission to release it here in the US. There's a new DVD version out that's around $15 (just search for "Akira... Read More
Feb 24, 2012 by D. H. |  See all 12 posts
Issues with Japanese TrueHD track
Actually after doing research I've found that, the problem is definitely because of outdated amplifiers. Our amlifiers are mixing down the 192khz streams into AC-3 2.0.

In order to listen to the Japanese Dolby TrueHD, you need to use a Blu-Ray player set to send PCM audio over HDMI (PS3... Read More
Feb 25, 2009 by J. Murray |  See all 16 posts
No Streamline dub, no sale.
I totally agree! Akira was the first anime I ever watched and I am extremely dissapointed that I cannot find the Streamline dub anywhere. What I wouldn't give to make my old VHS copy work again....
Feb 24, 2009 by Bashar09 |  See all 172 posts
DVD re-re-release?
I agree sweet pea. I don't own a Blu Ray player yet, so I want this on DVD, but it isn't available new directly from Amazon anymore. God Bless. :D
Apr 8, 2010 by compsciguy |  See all 5 posts
That's perfectly understandable, but I think "Akira" is expensive not because of corporate greed, but simply because it's anime. I remember just a few years ago, nearly every anime title on DVD was somewhere between $20 to $40, often for indivdual volumes of TV shows. Complete box... Read More
Jan 30, 2009 by AMP |  See all 32 posts
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