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Battle Angel (1999)

Miki Itô , Amanda Winn Lee , Hiroshi Fukutomi  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Miki Itô, Amanda Winn Lee, Shunsuke Kariya, Kappei Yamaguchi, Mami Koyama
  • Directors: Hiroshi Fukutomi
  • Writers: Akinori Endo, Yukito Kishiro
  • Producers: Joichi Sugito, Kazuhiko Ikeguchi, Matt Greenfield
  • Format: Animated, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Japanese (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: ADV Films
  • DVD Release Date: December 7, 1999
  • Run Time: 54 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000031EG6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,410 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Battle Angel" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Contains both Rusty Angel and Tears Sign
  • Production portfolio and slide show
  • 15 previews for other A.D.V. Films titles
  • Web Access

Editorial Reviews

This film contains graphic violence and brief nudity.

Known as Gunnm in Japan and then Battle Angel Alita to Western manga readers, Battle Angel (in all of its incarnations) is now part of the canon of Blade Runner-inspired anime cyberpunk.

The film version follows a "Hunter Warrior" and cyborg healer named Ido. Ido formerly lived in the floating land of Zalem (Tiphares in the book), the paradise that hovers over the refuse heap of Scrap Iron City in which he now resides with his former lover, Chiren. In his travels as a bounty hunter (killing spine thieves in a world in which human nerve tissue has become the most precious commodity), Ido one day discovers and repairs the remnants of a cyborg whom he names Gally (Alita in the manga). Though possessing the body of a young woman, Gally embodies Ido's most sophisticated and lethal cybernetic skill. In the first episode on the DVD, "Rusty Angel," Gally challenges Chiren's own creation, Greweicia--a brain-eating gladiator--to a death match. In "Tears Sign" Gally discovers that her first love, Yugo, has put himself in the employ of the spine trader Vector so that he can earn his way, he thinks, to Zalem. Gally confronts her fellow bounty hunters to protect Yugo, only to watch him horribly wounded in a plot to capture her for Vector.

Yukito Kishiro's finely detailed line drawings in the original manga (like a cleaner version of Miyazaki's style in the Nausicaa books) are impossible to translate into film. What the film loses in detail, however, it makes up for in its intense action sequences and shadowy mixtures of color and a darkly cinematic soundtrack. Anime fans should be prepared for some pretty graphic violence--including some horrific scenes of decapitation. Also, the action keeps the plot moving at breakneck speed, so character development often seems to happen in leaps; you'll want to read the books to learn more about Gally/Alita and her world.

For English speakers, the DVD is best watched in the original Japanese with subtitles. The dubbing seems to raise the pitch of everyone's voice, changing the mood of the film from tragic-cool to slightly comical. Gally's English is especially annoying. With her original Japanese voice (sometimes childlike and sometimes a seductive whisper), she is a perfectly deadly heroine with a leather-clad style that anticipates The Matrix. --Patrick O'Kelley

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A rare gem of an anime. April 30, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
Anyone who has read the manga will immediately notice a few things. First of all, there are several different titles. The Japanese manga is titled Gunnm, while the American version is called Battle Angel Alita. This anime is simply entitled Battle Angel. This two-part series is based on the first two volumes of the manga, however there are several changes. In the manga, the main character is called Alita, but she has been renamed "Gally" in the anime. Also, the mysterious floating city has changed from Tiphares to Zalem. Outside of this, it follows the stories from the manga, but has been altered to fit into two half-hour episodes.
At its core, Battle Angel is a story of love, hope, and heartbreak. The story blends lightning-paced action, emotional drama, and compelling mystery. What struck me was that it pulls it off so seamlessly. The flow is nearly perfect, and not once did my suspension of disbelief wane in the slightest.
The character are simply excellent. No one seems "fake", for they all have realistic traits and flaws. This heightens their believability and makes it easier to become attached to them. One thing I noted is that Gally is not your typical anime android. While from the neck up she looks human, the rest of her body is very mechanical. This is a welcome break from the traditional prosthetic ani-babes which plague many other titles.
The art is very good, capturing the grittiness of the scrap yard perfectly. The animation is also pretty decent, especially during the action sequences.
If there is anything to complain about it's that this series is far too short. The manga version is very extensive, and this series could easily have been a couple dozen episodes in length.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A horrific sci-fi story about violence and love!! March 25, 2005

* Intense blood and gore.

* Deep storyline (easy to understand).

* Cool character desing (so look alike to the anime in Kill Bill).

* Great action scenes with good animation (there were like 3 or 4 action scenes).


* The graphics were kind of smudgy.

* Sad story.

The story is simple because is about this robot girl called Gally who want to become an assasin for hire so she can get a better life but later the problems become more complicated.

This anime is not those who seeks for action-packed, this is more like a violent movie but is still a classic and very recomended for anime fans.

P.S: The english dub was GREAT but way to overacted at times, I think the voices were better than the acting but is worth to hear, so don't pay to much attention to the other people because is not THAT bad. In fact! this is one of the best dubs I ever heard since Princess Mononoke and Twilight of the Darkmaster.

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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The universe manifests April 5, 2004
Unique, beautiful, and well story-lined.
This is number one in my anime collection. Just about every bad review gotten for this movie was because of people who read the manga and therefor had major bias since a movie will just about never be the way you pictured it would be from reading it.
Joy, love and peace.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the money January 8, 2000
It's hard for me to be unbiased in writing this review because I've seen Battle Angel beforehand in VHS and loved it. The DVD offers some bonuses that are worth the extra bucks, but it's still the basics that made this anime impressive that will attract viewers. First, the storyline is not too complicated, so don't think you'll be pondering the meaning of life after watching the movie. I'll admit, I think it was a big mistake to try to shove everything in your face in such a short period of time. The characters seem to just merely be friends five minutes into the movie, but then become lovers two minutes later. All that aside, what really makes this anime shine, however, is the realistic world and fight scenes that encompass what should've been a longer movie. The characters are loveable in their own way (Note- avoid the dubbed version and switch to the orignal dialouge to see what I mean)and they leave each their own mark of tragedy at the end. All in all, a worthwile anime buy for hardcore and occasional viewers. Action and dramatic fans alike.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have January 21, 2000
I absoulutely loved it, the colors arn't washed(compare it to the VHS). The audio is incredible. Much better then the VHS release. I've been looking for this DVD for a long time. If you like ANIME get it, the fight scenes and artwork although not true to the original detail of the manga is incredible none the less.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark future September 3, 2003
Battle Angel is one of my favorite animes. It's unfortunate that this is all there is, because there is so much more that happens afterwards, like the motorball days or the tuned experience.
Adv does a great job is voice actor choices, all except for gally. When she yells, it is so annoying. Thank heaven there is the japanese version on the DVD.
Good stuff, but I wish the series would have been longer.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Please get the subtitle! May 3, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
Fortunately, I was able to watch this movie before reading the comics, so I had no biased view when watching the movie. But please get or rent the subtitle if you can, it's so much better than the english dubbed. It's not too fast that you can't follow. This is one of my very favorite animes. I haven't seen an anime like this yet. This is one of the few adventure animes that I have seen that have masterfully blended a wonderful love story with action, horror, and tradedy. For all the people who have complained about the name change from Alita to Gally in this movie, Gally is the original japanese manga name. Kishiro was disappointed that the american comics changed the name. I think that when making this movie, the authors tried to appease the manga writer by putting in the original name for the cyborg. The comic is much more cynical and violent. At least the end of the movie there was a feeling of hope. I highly recommend this movie for anime fans and non anime fans alike. Even for those die hard manga fans, this movie is a must see, just out of curiosity.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Anime - watch it before the James Cameron live action film is...
If you are a fan of Anime, you already own this.

Stylized drawings, classic story. No wonder James Cameron is looking to create a live-action version of it. Read more
Published 26 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, gritty anime
I have watched his anime over and over. While it is too brief to be as emotionally recruiting as a series, the character development is still great and memorable. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Spidey Lee
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful anime
My only two complaints about this are 1) that it has been allowed to go out of print, and 2) that it did not get a longer treatment. Read more
Published 12 months ago by D. Clemmer
5.0 out of 5 stars batle angel alita
this is a piece of work , specially because of the rareness of its nature , theres no other anime out there like this one in the same path and tone ! Read more
Published 13 months ago by frank I.
5.0 out of 5 stars Pity about the sex
This action-themed anime would have been perfect except for the brief bouts of sex that show up. Some might call that an advantage, though.
Published 15 months ago by Gideon Kalve Jarvis
5.0 out of 5 stars arrived sooner than advertised
product was in pristine condition and had bonus materials I wasn't expecting as well as episodes for the price you cant beat it
Published 15 months ago by Tynan Tillack
4.0 out of 5 stars James Cameron. Make this movie NOW!!!
It's short but sweet! There are moments of rather butal extreme violence but it has a good balance of story telling to even things out a bit. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Borat's Bad Brother
5.0 out of 5 stars Battle Angel
I remember seeing this anime when only VHS tapes were around. Luckily, I came across the anime again and purchased the DVD version for my collection. Read more
Published 23 months ago by HRF3
5.0 out of 5 stars maybe my favorite anime
Although it is a modest 60 minutes and had a limited budget, this might be my favorite anime ever because of the powerful emotion and unique world it conveys. Read more
Published on February 28, 2012 by Lars Kingbeard
4.0 out of 5 stars Original Cyber Punk Classic...
Okay maybe not the original "cyber punk" but when that term comes to mind this is the story that captures the spirit. Read more
Published on August 16, 2011 by James Mark Chan
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Topic From this Discussion
Anyone have a complete set of this?
If you're referring to Battle Angel (Gunnm), only two episodes were ever made. They were released on DVD years ago and went out of print. There are places where you can still buy it, though, like The manga (comic), on the other hand, is ongoing.
Sep 8, 2009 by Ralph Jenkins |  See all 3 posts
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