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Worth A Look: 16.87%
Average: 1.2%
Pretty Bad: 0%
Total Crap: 3.61%

2 reviews, 71 user ratings

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Cowboy Bebop: The Movie
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by Joe Cooper

"The full potential of anime is on display in Cowboy Bebop: The Movie."
4 stars

Cowboy Bebop: The Movie (aka Knockiní on Heavenís Door) is a glistening example of everything that anime can be. As the big screen debut of the cult television series, it takes the imagination on a wild ride with a non-stop barrage of escapist action, stunning animation, and all the chic hallmarks of Bebopís version of the future. For fans of the series and initiates alike, Cowboy Bebop: The Movie is an experience not to be missed.

In 2071, the term cowboy is slang for bounty hunter. On a spaceship called the Bebop, a small group of misfits eke out an existence tracking down and capturing societyís wanted criminals. It barely pays the bills, but life as a cowboy fulfils a need in each member of the Bebopís crew. Leading the posse is Spike Spiegel, a moody young maverick with a never-ending need for sensory stimulation in the form of danger and excitement. Partnering and arguing with Spike on most hunts is Jet Black, a cynical ex-cop that fled the corruption of the Inter Solar Systems Police to dish out his own form of justice. Completing the team are Faye Valentine, an attractive gambling addict, and the oddly named Edward, a young female hacker whose best friend is a corgi.

As they tire of eating instant noodles out of styrofoam cups and bickering amongst themselves, the crew of the Bebop is presented with a timely opportunity to improve their bank balance. A tanker explodes in the heart of one of Marsí futuristic cities, releasing a virus that immediately kills everyone in the vicinity. Struggling to develop an effective vaccine to thwart the virusís ghastly effects, and fearing further attacks, the government immediately announces an enormous bounty for the capture of the terrorists responsible.

With an unprecedented $300 million up for grabs, Spike and his team are quick to begin their hunt for the perpetrators. However, rather than their usual prey of terrorists, drug dealers, and mobsters, they discover Vincent, a dark and deeply disturbed character with a well crafted plan to eradicate the entire population of the planet. With the government harbouring its own sinister agenda, itís up to the Bebop Cowboys to race the clock and defeat the pressing threat to life on Mars. Wild shootouts, heart pounding chases, and spectacular fight scenes ensue until the final explosive showdown.

The full splendour of several forms of Japanimation are on display in Cowboy Bebop: The Movie and are seamlessly meshed. Director Shinichiro Watanabe keeps the viewer perpetually amazed by background scenery that often appears photographic, along with the small-nosed, large-eyed characters engaged in mind-blowing action sequences. Anime fans will be delighted, and newcomers to the genre will discover what all the fuss is about.

When the mind isnít reeling from the thrills and spills on screen, itís caught by the interesting view of the future that the movie presents. Mars is an intriguing blend of the past and the future, with its towering metropolises separated by vast red desert plains. In many ways itís Bladerunner meets a Sergio Leone western. Itís an entertaining mix and stamps Cowboy Bebop with a unique feel.

Cowboy Bebop: The Movie also benefits enormously from its soundtrack. The movie is accompanied by a series of pumped up jazz-funk tracks composed by Yoko Kanno and performed by The Seatbelts. The use of the distinctive music sets Cowboy Bebop: The Movie apart from many of its competitors and projects the movieís pace and mood beautifully.

There do appear to be unnecessary gaps in the storyline, and a few instances of plot digression in Cowboy Bebop: The Movie. The frequent return to dialogue sessions on the spaceship appear to be pointless, and Edwardís Jar Jar Binks-like cutesy antics are mildly annoying and distracting. However, these moments are a small price to pay, and easily forgiven.

Cowboy Bebop: The Movie is an amazing cinematic experience, and an impressive display of the potential of anime. A clever plot and a surprising soundtrack combine with the dazzling animation to thrill newcomers and seasoned Beboppers alike.

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originally posted: 04/15/03 16:52:08
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2012 Boston SciFi Film Festival For more in the 2012 Boston Sci-Fi Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

5/12/15 Christian Paulson awesome!! 5 stars
2/27/15 ewoks waste my time 1 stars
12/18/10 bored mom Mediocre, with same stereotypical characters. I'd rather waste my time playing Metal Gear. 3 stars
3/13/09 Stephen Well made, quite easy to follow deserves it's stars! 5 stars
1/17/07 Sam FRICKEN AWESOME 5 stars
5/30/05 Burnt Not even worth watching ... 1 stars
4/19/05 Hack-SAW DAMN STRAIGHT BOI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
4/03/05 The Sorrow Pure white-kuckled adrenaline action! 5 stars
1/25/05 Graves Sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet... Uh, SWEET FILM 5 stars
8/14/04 Archanist 101 The Effile Tower fight scene was electrifying! 5 stars
7/27/04 Pure RAGE... Watannabe is very thoughtful 5 stars
7/25/04 Pure RAGE... Better than the crap Hollywood, *sometimes* makes 5 stars
7/20/04 Cyrus "The Virus" I see this film somewhere between having sex & winning a million bucks! 5 stars
7/14/04 Dual Golden Plated Colt .45's good. 5 stars
7/08/04 "Meth Lab" for Dummies. FUCKIN AWESOME! 5 stars
7/08/04 wildcarde1 Not as good as the series but still amazing 5 stars
7/06/04 hhf Great series and great film 5 stars
6/26/04 "Meth Lab" for Dummies. Any film-maker(s) would be envouis or at least the bit jealous of this! 5 stars
6/01/04 John Poo\\\'s "Arse/Off" Love the cheography and the plot is to die for !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
5/04/04 payandspray soooooooo great 5 stars
4/29/04 Sutherland I agree 5 stars
4/29/04 Mark Louis Baumgart love the cast, love the look, love the story, gotta love the movie 5 stars
4/25/04 PAYNE great film 5 stars
4/17/04 BaztarD_101 i agree 1-! 5 stars
4/07/04 Sig wow 5 stars
4/03/04 The More You Know This is a mega-hit of some already addictive & funkdafied s*_* 5 stars
4/03/04 Brandon Temple I loved it I liked the fights, the shootouts, the Characters I thought the plot was great! 5 stars
3/27/04 Jaricho_451_9mm BANG. CLICK. RELOADED & COCKED... BANG 5 stars
3/26/04 Mars 2071 The rating says it all! 5 stars
3/25/04 pAY dAY Sorry but, you're missinformed... It was a great movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
3/24/04 pAY dAY This is a timeless classic next to 'The French Connection' & 'Lord of The Rings' 5 stars
3/24/04 Mars 2071 excellent 5 stars
3/23/04 KGB Cool fight scenes. great music. 5 stars
3/23/04 Xile cool 5 stars
3/22/04 Keifer Sutherland_RULZ This is not your typical Sci-Fi/Action/Arthouse film 5 stars
3/22/04 Willam Dafoe_Da_FOE I'VE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING LIKE THIS!!!!!!!!!!!! WOW, WHO MADE THIS? 5 stars
3/21/04 Jack-pyschO-Lantern Sorry but... I've just watched it again and couldnt help myself!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
3/20/04 Jack-pyschO-Lantern Why can't Hollywood ever make something as good as what the Japenese make? 5 stars
3/19/04 KJAhdkadfka really good!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
3/18/04 Umbrella Corporation. Vincent Volaju is one of the best villians... EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
3/18/04 ChaIn-Zaw REALLY GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
3/17/04 PAYNE_KillerZ Highly Recomanded...! 5 stars
3/16/04 L33T Master_101 BEST ANIME EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
3/15/04 "Meth Labs" for DUMMIES EXCELLENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
1/08/04 Shane Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FUCKING GOOD~!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
12/25/03 Max Richter Totally Kickass, With awesome music and gunfights!!! 5 stars
8/21/03 Daddy Plaid Only thing holding this anime together was Ed 4 stars
8/13/03 Jim Almost on the level of Akira 5 stars
8/03/03 Shane Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BLOODY FUCKING BRILLIANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
7/05/03 ND I loved the TV series and I loved the movie even MORE!!!! One of the flawless Anime movies 5 stars
6/19/03 Bebopper Excellent show, fantastic film! 5 stars
6/15/03 Nekura Absolutely loved it, good time, didn't get old at all. Would see it again many times over. 5 stars
6/14/03 The Guy who liked this anime. WATCH. IT. NOW. 5 stars
5/19/03 Lyddie You're on the edge of your seat the entire ride. Totally kicks ass. 5 stars
5/11/03 Kyle Rocked my face, quite frankly. Must-see for otaku. 5 stars
5/03/03 Artist Freak Excellent in so many ways - well paced action, killer art direction and animation, fun. 5 stars
5/02/03 Mark Mills Be carefull watching this, it leads to buying the entire show on DVD. 5 stars
4/23/03 Dan Sama This is possibly the best animation of all TIME!!! 5 stars
4/15/03 teZuKa VERY VERY Good, I just love the action parts 5 stars
4/14/03 Louis Visually stunning, but ran a bit long 4 stars
4/09/03 The Talking Elbow Stupid name, great movie/series... Sully = misinformed 5 stars
4/07/03 Arlene Excellent Movie! A must see for any Bebop Fan!!! 5 stars
4/07/03 Kali Wonderful thriller, filled to overflowing with great music 5 stars
4/07/03 Nik Davila Great movie, funny AND action packed! 5 stars
4/07/03 Bill Lee I thought it was kick ass. 5 stars
4/05/03 me awesome 5 stars
4/05/03 nnnnnnizbeko Saw the sub, pretty damned good, tastey like mushroom cereal 5 stars
4/05/03 Nolen Cowboy Bebop??? GET IT??? 5 stars
4/05/03 Brian awesome film for an awesome series. not perfect, but still good 5 stars
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  04-Apr-2003 (R)



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