After wandering through the desert for days, a bitter warrior named Munsu is lost and unable to continue. His life is unexpectedly saved by Mon-ryon, a young man who dreams of becoming a secret agent for Jushin, a once-great country that was recently destroyed. Mon-ryon's goal is to save his girlfriend, Chunhyan, a born fighter who is held captive by the evil Lord Byonand. Then, from out of nowhere, blood begins trickling from his chest. He has been fatally wounded by the Sarinjas, a cannibalistic breed of desert goblin. The quick-thinking Munsu convinces these beasts to spare his life, in exchange for the peaceful handover of Mon-ryon's appetizing corpse. Although skeptical of Mon-ryon's motives, Munsu sets out to continue the mission that the young idealist described. Accompanied by an army of ghost troops, unleashed using the powers of Angyo Onshi, Munsu liberates Chunhyan. After visiting her boyfriend's final resting place, she declares herself Munsu's bodyguard and, together, they set out on a mission to punish those who stripped Jushin of its original glory.
Better than I thought it was going to be. Some cool action and violence. Some plot twists and characters that get killed off sudden and unexpectecly kept my interest for most of the movie. Seemed predictable towards end, but had good action all the way thru. Animation and sound is excellent. Similiar to Requiem for the Darkness in style of anime. Good voice acting too. Easy to find on dvd and cheap too.
What can I say.. the animation is very nice. Though this anime does surpise you at times. It has random moments like when certain characters die. Although the anime balances itself out nicely. Out of 1 through 5 I give this anime a 3/5 . Its not for everone. All I can say if you seem interested in it.. then give it a watch. You should be pretty pleased. Thanks for reading my review.
In Jushin, there once lived secret government agents called Angyo Onshi who traveled the countryside in disguise. They were charged by the king with finding and punishing corrupt government officials and bringing justice. Munsu is an Angyo Onshi who possesses the power to summon a ghost army. He happens upon a young man, Mon-ryon, who aspires to be an Angyo Onshi in order to save his girlfriend from the clutches of an evil Lord. Mon-ryon meets his demise and Junshin has fallen but Munsu still travels to continue the king's quest for justice. Munsu releases the people and Mon-ryon's, Chun Hyang from the
Lord's tyrannical rule. Chun Hyang is revealed to be an accomplished fighter and pledges herself to be Munsu's "Sando" or bodyguard in honor of her lost love.
Pay attention to the above summary (pieced together through 2 anime sources, a manga entry and my own inference), because that is the most explanation you will get about this movie. The viewer is dropped into the middle of an ongoing story and expected to understand the past and present. This formula may work with a well written script, but unfortunately this is not one of them.
This movie severely suffers character development. Munsu is unlikable, sardonic and apathetic. There is absolutely no back story given to explain his behavior or motivations. I believe Chun Hyang's only purpose in the anime is to act as fanservice in her leather fetish strap costume. She is timid and rarely speaks except to apologize for her actions. She is more like a puppet than an actual character.
The music features some orchestral pieces that are reminiscent of the samisen and lute of feudal Japan. This same piece was played twice, both when examining sweeping backdrops of scenery, and was honestly the best part of the movie. The animation used both hand drawn cells and CGI. The CGI was pretty obvious and didn't blend well.
The movie features some action scenes and plenty of head shots, but fails to give the viewer a story.
The concept of BLADE OF THE PHANTOM MASTER really interested me, and the outcome surprised me. The film reminded me of an 80's anime, dealing with magic, goblins, devils and whatnot. However, as a film, it has a few flaws. Basically there these people called Angyo Onshi they are warriors with mystical powers. The main character is one of these Angyo Onshi. He travels around, killing corrupt kings and other villains. But when a man who saves him is killed in the desert, this warrior sets out to find his fiance and free her from a mad king, and the two form an unlikely alliance.
OF THE PHANTOM MASTER moves at a good pace, once the right characters are lined up to complete its entire story. But there are problems. This is a film, so you need good character development and this film heavily lacks that. The main character has no real background, other than we know he's an Angyo Onshi and we don't know a lot about the female character and how she got her ability's. The film, although places its characters in this universe nicely, there is no real storyline for them to follow. Instead, it plays out like a few stand alone shorts that have no real conclusion. But the film is very brutal and the main character, although extremely unlikeable, is very good at what he does. His attitude reminds me of Wolverine or Mad Max. He only cares about himself, his desires and he does some really surprising things to save his own neck.
Aside from the violence, the art work and special effects are great. I like the atmosphere and this world too. Mixed with that and its lack of characters that offer little to no flavor in the story and its episodic nature that would of worked better as an OVA or an actual show, the film is fun as hell. A perfect two-hour killer that will keep you interested with some pretty bold moves that you wont see coming. I liked it, I just wish they could of expanded it. Is there a sequel? If there is, I would love to get my hands on it.