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Anime DVD Reviews
The Girl Who Leapt Through TimeThe Girl Who Leapt Through Time
The Girl Who Leapt Through Time
Anime DVD Review by Brian Cirulnick

The Girl Who Leapt Through TimeIn a word: Wow.

Simple and moving. Whatever you're expecting, you won't be prepared for this film. It exceeds every preconceived notion about what makes for a great anime film. It's very much a cross between a Miyazaki film and a Shinkai film, both of whom are being universally hailed as anime's greatest directors, but it's created by a virtual unknown, Mamoru Hosada. Nevertheless, with a film like this, Hosada is headed for anime greatness. Read More...

Below: Trailer for the The Girl Who Leapt Through Time.

Anime DVD Review by Brian Cirulnick

ClaymoreClaymore is a grisly, complex series with a chilling supernatural element to it that is not for the faint of heart. The anime series follows the life of Clare, a Claymore warrior who volunteered for the assignment after her friend Teresa was killed.

There's a lot to learn in the series as technical terms are thrown at the viewer quickly; "Yoma" are shape-shifters and can live among humans without detection, feeding on them in secret and even taking on the appearance and memories of those they've eaten. Read More...

Claymore —

Rosario + Vampire (DVD)Rosario + Vampire (DVD)
Rosario + Vampire
Anime DVD Review by Brian Cirulnick

Rosario + Vampire Ooops! What happens when you accidentally enroll in monster school?

Tsukune Aono is a painfully average high school freshman who is unable to get into any private school due to his disappointing test scores. The only school he is finally accepted into turns out to be a secret school for supernatural monsters (y`kai), who are in disguise as humans.

The first student he meets is the beautiful Moka Akashiya, who becomes his friend for an unusual reason; she is a vampire, and is attracted to the sweet taste of his human blood. Tsukune quickly realizes his mistake that this is definitely *NOT* a normal university and fears for his life. Read More...

Rosario + Vampire —

High and LowHigh and Low
High and Low
Japanese Cinema DVD Review
by Brian Cirulnick

Visit our Akira Kurosawa shrineThe great Akira Kurosawa was a master an transforming works from other cultures —from westerns to Russian novels —into authentically Japanese dramas, and there's no better example than this taut 1963 adaptation of the Ed McBain novel about a kidnapping gone wrong, King's Ransom.

Set indoors in one space for most of the first hour, High and Low is a veritable lesson in widescreen filmmaking that looks as crisp and compelling as ever in this Criterion restoration. Supplements that add a purchase incentive for those that already own the title's 1998 release include a 37-minute Toho featurette on the film, which includes incisive comments from Kurosawa and an informative interview with actor Tsutomu Yamazaki, who gives a powerful performance as the kidnapper. Read More...

Below: How can't you love Toshiro Mifune?

Our Favorite Toys, Models and Gizmos
Domo-kun 12 inch plushDomo-kun 12 inch plush
Domo-kun 12 inch plush
Anime Toy Review by Brian Cirulnick

If you don't know who Domo-kun is yet, shame on you! Simply *the* most popular character since Hello Kitty, Domo-kun is everywhere! Originally created as a mascot for Japan's NHK television station, and appearing in several 30-second stop-motion sketches as Station Identification Domo-kun is wildly popular (imagine if SNL's Mr. Bill had become a national phenomenon). Domo's offical site is : but there's a USA site as well

However, enjoy this 12 incho Domo-kun plush in the meantime. Excellent for curling up to sleep with while you dream of eating Japanese-style meat and potato stew. Recommended Books:
Burst Angel mangaBurst Angel
Burst Angel
Manga Review
by Brian Cirulnick

Burst Angel mangaMeg and Jo are the team from "Jack of All Trades", two smoking-hot hired guns who'll take on just about any dirty job if the price is right. Jo's the indestructible crack-shot and Meg... well, ... Meg has a talent for getting abducted. But when these sexy mercenaries are forced to hide out at bully-magnet Takeru's apartment, it's the beginning of an unlikely friendship amidst the flying bullets and foiled kidnappings! Read More...

Burst Angel manga

Fate Stay NightFate Stay Night
Fate Stay Night
Manga Review
by Brian Cirulnick

Fate Stay NightRazzles, first it's a candy and then it's a gum. Fate/Stay Night started as a videogame, morphed into a popular anime series, and now it's a manga as well! It is an adaption of the Fate/stay night visual novel, rather than the anime. In contrast to the anime, the manga focuses solely on the "Unlimited Blade Works" scenario of the game, and has refrained from pooling story elements from the sister scenarios, Fate/hollow ataraxia or Fate/Zero.

Fate Stay Night manga

Aranzi Machine GunAranzi Machine Gun
Aranzi Machine Gun
Japanese Crafts Mook Review by Michael Pinto

Aranzi Machine GunIn Japan there is the great tradition of the mook, which is a combination of a magazine and a book. And if you're into Japanese crafting (with a an extra helping of cute) this is the mook that you'll want to own. Unlike other "how to books" the Aranzi Machine Gun series is amazing because most it places Etsyesque felt charcters into a clever manga format. The result is that these cute creations come to life as characters which makes for entertaining reading even if you have no intention of stitching together these little wonders. Read More...

Below: A page from Aranzi Machine Gun.

A page from Aranzi Machine Gun.

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Yoshika Miyafuji Nendoroid Figure

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