Saturday, February 16, 2013

Kite Uncut Special Edition Anime Review

Kite Uncut Special Editon
A Kite
Anime Works-Media Blasters
Movie - 1 disc
45 mins. Edited Version
60 mins. Uncut Version (w/hentai)
$24.99 (2012) Blu-ray
$29.99 (2009) w/Kite: Liberator
$19.99 (2009) Remastered
$29.99 (2008) w/Mezzo Forte Uncut
$24.99 (2008) w/Mezzo Forte
$29.95 (2006) w/t-shirt
$24.95 (2006)
$34.95 (2004) Uncut Speical Edition w/t-shirt
$29.95 (2004) Uncut Special Edition
$29.95 (2002) Director's Cut (Uncut)
$24.95 (1999)
ISBN 631595008227
Japanese/English Audio - English Subtitles
Director - Yasuomi Umetsu
Studio - Green Bunny/ARMS
Sawa looks like your average schoolgirl who never blinks
Synopsis: An innocent-looking teenage schoolgirl is really a deadly assassin.  Her name is Sawa and she uses a signature gun with exploding bullet shells.  She kills at the command of her guardian, Akai, a corrupt police detective who runs an assassin business on the side.  He often investigates the crime scenes of Sawa's assassinations and hides any evidence.  His partner is Kanie, an ugly man with bug-eyes and a nasty looking facial scar.
Akai is a corrupt cop and Sawa's "guardian"
Kanie uses an assassin named Oburi who is the same age as Sawa.  The two meet and quickly form a bond based on their similarly traumatic young lives.  Sawa's parents were murdered and Akai was the investigating detective.  He took her in and gave her a pair of earrings filled with blood from each of her parents.  He trained her to be a killer and turned her into his sex slave.  The two older men are truly evil.
Sawa uses a special gun with explosive bullets
Can Sawa and Oburi escape their damaged existence or are they beyond hope?  They are both frighteningly good assassins, but can they outsmart two sly old foxes to win their freedom?  Who killed Sawa's parents?  Is she too desensitized after years of emotional and physical trauma to resist her psychological captors?
Oburi is another young assassin who uses the same type of gun
Pros: Extreme action scenes, hardcore sex scenes (in the uncut versions), Sawa is very hot, her and Oburi make a great pair, neo-noir stylings complete with correspondingly jazzy soundtrack, haunting and mature
Sawa takes on some bodyguards in a botched assassination attempt
Cons: Thin plot, Akai and Kanie are truly disgusting, underage graphic sex scenes (in the uncut versions), bittersweet ending, the sex scenes could be offensive or the lack of sex scenes could be offensive (depending on what you're looking for)
Sawa falls for Oburi's pretty boy good looks
Mike Tells It Straight: Kite is an anime cult classic combining the two extremes of gory violence and explicit sex.  Sawa is a schoolgirl assassin with a traumatic past.  She is exploited mentally and sexually by her "guardian" Akai in this brief psychological thriller.  She meets fellow young assassin Oburi and the two start to fall in love as kindred spirits.  They are caged birds trying to gain their freedom with both their lives at stake.  It's a bittersweet love story filled with violent action.  This is what the edited version delivers to you.
Yep, they're in love
The real and uncut version of Kite is much darker and features incredibly graphic sex scenes between Akai and Sawa.  Quite a few versions have been released with various amounts of editing.  The remastered edition and anything not labeled uncut all have the various sex scenes removed.  These edited versions have a brief shot of Sawa topless and only hint at the sexual abuse she suffers at the hands of Akai.  The uncut versions have much more explicit scenes where Sawa has sex with both Akai and Kanie.  The original version has scenes of Akai molesting an extremely underage Sawa (also basketball girl briefly appears with Akai and Kanai).  Needless to say these scenes were very controversial and caused the various edited versions.  Not to mention Sawa is a 'college student' in the American version, but she's wearing a high school uniform so you do the math.
Only Superman can stop bullets with his hands
I originally watched Kite many years ago and it caught me completely off guard.  What is interesting about this feature is Green Bunny, the hentai animation studio, co-produced it.  First off, hentai is Japanese animated porn and Green Bunny has created a few noteworthy titles (Midnight Panther, G-Taste, Words Worth).  The animation quality of the sex scenes was surprisingly good - much better than your average hentai.  It was shockingly explicit with many scenes of visible penetration.  What starts out as a teenage assassin story suddenly segues into porn before a violent conclusion.   
She kept her socks on
The sex scenes seem to mask the fact Kite's plot is not very good.  I watched the edited version and had more time to consider the story without the distraction of the full-penetration scenes with Sawa.  The action scenes aren't particularly imaginative and the characters are lackluster.  I think the uncut version with the sex scenes puts Kite on another violently creepy and erotic level.  A major plot point is omitted in the edited version when Oburi is forced to watch at gunpoint while Sawa has sex.  It definitely pushed the envelope and deserves cult classic status.   
You won't see this scene in the edited version (btw, that's basketball girl)
Don't watch Kite if the underage sexual exploitation is offensive (and it is just plain graphicly offensive).  Watch the edited version if you don't want to see the hardcore sex scenes, but like the girls-with-guns genre and violently gory action scenes.  Get the uncut or director's cut version if you want to see the hardcore sex the way the show was originally intended.  Since there are so many different releases be particularly aware of the length of what you are buying.  The edited version is 45 minutes and the unedited is 60 minutes.  Umetsu and Green Bunny/ARMS followed up Kite with a similar feature called Mezzo Forte and eventually a sequel called Kite Liberator.  I've also heard Kite will be an American major motion picture with Samuel L. Jackson attached as of this blog post.  We'll see if it gets released and how different the story will be.  I guarantee the sex scene will be left out ;)

TO BUY and Recommendations: