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RahXephon - Threshold (Vol. 1)

4.2 out of 5 stars 291 customer reviews

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(Mar 25, 2003)
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Editorial Reviews

The city of Tokyo has been overthrown, taken over by the Mu, invaders who have devastated the rest of the planet. Within the domed walls of the city, however, time flows in a different path, and none of the citizens even know they've been conquered. Outside Tokyo, the remnants of the human race have fought a desperate 15- year war against the Mu, knowing only that the key to victory lies within the occupied city. But no one has been able to get into Tokyo-until Ayato Kamina, a young resident fleeing a horrifying attack on the city, unwittingly breaks out. An extraordinary mystery unfolds as Ayato confronts a world he has never known, and begins to learn the horrifying secrets of RahXephon, a humanoid super weapon which apparently only he can control.

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Jason Douglas, Hiro Shimono, Aya Hisakawa, Fumioki, Dai Matsumoto
  • Directors: Akitoshi Yokoyama, Ikurô Satô, Masahiro Andô, Mitsuo Iso, Susumu Kudo
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Animated, Color, NTSC
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Section 23
  • DVD Release Date: March 25, 2003
  • Run Time: 125 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (291 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000844JY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #199,877 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "RahXephon - Threshold (Vol. 1)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
(This will be spoiler free, and as a result, brief. I don't want to give away a thing!)
I recently finished watching this series and I have to say that it has been one of the best viewing experiences of my life.
The animation is fluid, smooth, and breathtaking. Strategic placement of various backdrops and images enhance the story, whether by foreshadowing an event to come, or connecting an event from the past.
You can tell from the titles themselves that RahXephon has a very strong musical undertone, and in fact is an integral part of the story. The result is music that is haunting, stirring...memorable.
Above all else the characters are what makes or breaks a story - and these made it many times over. The diversity of characters ensures that you can relate and empathize with at least one, if not more. They are simple, complex, mysterious, or a little bit of each - tied together with the perfect voices, making these characters come to life. You find yourself laughing with them, crying in sorrow, in rage, in joy. You no longer see 'characters', but real souls going through myriad experiences and taking you along for the ride.
After finishing this story I find myself feeling as if I had lost a close friend, since I will never again be able to discover this world and these people for the 'first time'. I'm sure all of you have gone through a similar experience, and realized how profound it was, and how much you wanted to share it with your family and friends, anyone who would listen. RahXephon has been such an experience for me, and it is one I will not soon forget.
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Format: DVD
Many people have commented on the similarities of Rahxephon to the seminal anime classic Neon Genesis Evangelion, and having viewed both in their entirety its easy to see why. Rahxephon borrows heavily from Evangelion (henceforth Eva) for both its premise and narrative. Nearly every major character in Eva has an analogous counterpart in Rahxephon, and if you swap out Eva's Christian symbolism for Rahxephon's musical references the overall plots are strikingly similar. Yet to simply dismiss Rahxephon as an Eva knockoff is to dismiss one of the best made anime series of the past few years.

The most immediately noticable aspect of Rahxephon is the stellar production values. The animation is simply gorgeous, made all the more beautiful by a flawless DVD transfer. The characters and mechs more with a convincing grace and fluidity not always present in anime TV series, and the amount of detail in the backgrounds is stunning. Also of note is the entire look of the show. The characters are realistically proportioned while still retaining that anime flaire (ie big eyes, spiky hair, etc.). The mechs are among to more interesting designs seen as of late, which like the characters are convincing yet stylized. The other mechanical aspects of the show, such as tanks, fighters, and ships, are all realistically detailed and help to sell the not-too-distant future setting.

This volume introduces a bevy of characters, yet they are all uniquely designed so that keeping track of who's who isn't a problem at all. You may not be able to keep all the Japanese names straight (it certainly took me a while), but you'll never have trouble recognizing a face. And for once in an anime, the characters go through realistic costume changes instead of wearing the same outfit all the time.
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Format: DVD
I wasn't terribly interested in this series when I first had a chance to see it and didn't have any real idea what it was really about, but after watching the first episode I was drawn in and completely hooked. The story is interesting and compelling while the animation style and mecha designs are absolutely beautiful. Through out the series I found all the characters to be very fascinating and extremely well developed. As far as the DVDs themselves go I am very pleased too. The inserts contain some great translator notes and other extras.
A lot of reviewers tend to compare Rahxephon to Evangelion, but I don't really think it's all that great of a comparison. Rahxephon is a much better series in my opinion. The characters have much more depth and have more reasonable motivations for their actions and are considerably more believable while the angst is less severe and more reasonable when it is present. The allusions and references are much more literary, like the aliens being called the Mu after Churchward's lost continent of Mu which I believe is often referenced in H.P. Lovecraft, and several rather apt references to various works of Japanese literature. Also the series has an awesome ending which while really weird and somewhat nonsensical at first eventually revealed a wealth of wonderful irony and assorted goodness after I thought about it for a moment. All of which leads to a wonderful series that I greatly enjoyed.
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Format: DVD
This has become a very promising year for US releases of anime. Most of the new issues are at least interesting, and a select few are serious contenders. RahXephon is one of the latter, combining some tried and true story lines with enough original thinking to seem fresh and original.
Sometimes I think Evangelion is the most borrowed from anime ever produced. Many of the results are unsatisfactory because the original set such a high standard that failures are glaring. Not so the case with RahXephon - rather than borrow, it echoes the old themes in an original context. Sure enough, a teen-aged boy (Ayato) finds himself in the middle of an attack on Tokyo and is led to the mystical temple where a giant egg contains RahXephon, who is a very aesthetic combination of EVA 01 and Gundam Wing. And giant space creatures (Dolems) appear in the skies for RahXephon to conquer.
But for each similarity, there are differences. Ayato is a much more vivid character than Shinji. After the first battle, Ayato and the robot catapult outside of the 'hidden' Tokyo. Where Ayato discovers that the city he though was all that was left of the world was really the last stronghold of the alien Mu, who plan the earth. They have locked themselves behind a time barrier in what is now called Tokyo Jupiter.
Ayato's friends have echoes as well - the reticent Reika Mishima who links him with RahXephon, Haruka Shitow - part special agent and part softie. And there is also the stern head of TERRA operations, Jin Kunugi. But despite the parallels, they these new efforts have different and richer personalities than their precursors. And there are many others to fill out the cast. It is clear that relationships will play as important a part in the story as the combat scenes, where 'song' is a weapon.
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