Newest Reviews
1 chance sur 2
Scooby-Doo! Abracadabra-Doo
Yin Yang Master, The
Hail, Mafia!
Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase
Strange House, The
Morfalous, Les
Everything Went Fine
Lux AEterna
Rum Runners
Fairy and the Devil, The
Mad God
Outside the Law
I Remember Mama
Superman Unbound
Lawrence of Belgravia
House Across the Lake, The
Wonder Park
Hornsby e Rodriguez
Operation Mincemeat
5 Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes
Peau Douce, La
Double Indemnity
Na Cha and the Seven Devils
Deep Murder
Superman vs. the Elite
Adam Project, The
Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century
Horse, La
Train Robbers, The
Let Sleeping Cops Lie
Funeral, The
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
  Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century Farewell to the Manga Maestro
Year: 2000
Director: Satoshi Kuwabara
Stars: Mari Shimizu, Akio Otsuka, Hiroshi Otake, Hisashi Katsuta, Kousei Tomita, Kyoji Kobayashi, Motoko Kumai, Naoko Matsui, Tamio Ohki, Yuko Mizutani, Yumi Touma, Emi Motoi
Genre: Drama, Thriller, Animated, Fantasy, TV MovieBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: On New Year's Eve famed manga artist Osamu Tezuka (voiced by Kyoji Kobayashi) leaves his latest work behind to visit a grand mansion. There a host of Tezuka's most celebrated characters gather to celebrate the new millennium and throw their creator a surprise party. Naturally Atom a.k.a. Astro Boy (Mari Shimizu) is there along with Sapphire (Yumi Touma), star of Princess Knight, Sharaku (Motoko Kumai) the Three-Eyed One, his gal pal Chiyoko Wato (Naoko Matsui) and scientists Dr. Ochanomizu (Hisashi Katsuta) and Dr. Tenma (Tamio Ohki). Late to arrive are badass surgical genius Black Jack (Hiroshi Otake) and kid sidekick Pinoko (Yuko Mizutani) whom immediately clashes with stuffy robot butler Robita (Hiroshi Otake) and harangues Tezuka as to why she and Black Jack are not yet married! In the midst of festivities a troubled Tezuka confides in Atom he has been followed all day by a mysterious stranger. Then after a stranger electromagnetic pulse disrupts the mansion Tezuka vanishes without a trace! It falls to his manga creations to find out what happened.

By the time this meta-textual anime special aired on December 25, 2000 the real Osamu Tezuka had been sadly deceased for more than a decade. Created to mark not only Tezuka's passing but the anniversary of the television network that aired many of his great works and also of course the dawn of a new century, Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century is a charmingly eccentric oddity. What could have been trite and gimmicky instead proves engrossing and, in its latter stages, a genuinely moving tribute to a true giant of Japanese manga and anime. In a manner reminiscent of Marine Express (1978), Last Mystery fashions a crossover featuring many of Tezuka's most beloved creations alongside a fictionalized version of the great man himself. Not for the first time either. The real Tezuka routinely made cameos in his own manga and animated works. Including a prominent supporting role in the live action/anime hybrid Vampire (1968) that, despite its title, actually concerns werewolves.

Essentially an Agatha Christie-like parlour room mystery (Christie was among Tezuka's many notable literary influences) the plot throws plenty of intrigue, red herrings and twists. By comparison the animation is somewhat uninspired. While certainly adequate it lacks that distinctive off-kilter inventiveness and cinematic bravura that distinguish Tezuka's own anime classics. Nevertheless the animators ensure that the characters remain authentic and engaging. Also that the plot, as it gradually evolves, reflects more of Tezuka's humanitarian themes and ecological concerns. Some find the messages herein a tad preachy. Yet one could argue they encompass the author's lifelong Buddhist-influenced ideals both authentically and eloquently. For Tezuka fans the finale wherein around a hundred classic characters pay tribute to their creator will likely provoke a sniffle or two. Especially when one key character, wholly appropriate on a thematic and personal level to the late manga genius, arrives to guide him on one last cosmic adventure.

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam


This review has been viewed 615 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
Enoch Sneed
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Paul Smith


Last Updated: