Review: Millennium Actress (Remastered)


A Millennium Journey

We all know about the greatness of the late Satoshi Kon, who passed away due to pancreatic cancer on August 24th, 2010—almost 9 years ago. He was responsible for directing and writing masterpieces like Paprika, Tokyo Godfathers, Perfect Blue—which got a remaster release last year, and Millennium Actress, which premiered during Anime Expo first and will premiere to the public this week in English dub and subs. While I will still review the movie itself to newcomers that haven’t experienced the movie yet, this will mostly cover on the remaster version and if it’s worth revisiting it.

I don’t have a home release version of the movie, but I will be using the Amazon Prime streaming version in comparison to my given screener. I haven’t had the chance to experience the movie in theaters yet, but given the quality improvement, like Perfect Blue, it’ll surely be a memorable experience.

Millennium Actress (Blu-ray)
Studio: Mad House
Licensed By: Fathom Events, Eleven Arts
Released: August 13th, 2019 (NA)

The movie will be featuring an all-new dub by a US company using US actors and will be the first time an English language dub of the movie will be released theatrically in the US. The movie will have the talents of Abby Trott as Chiyoko Fujiwara (Young) Erin Yvette as Chiyoko Fujiwara (Adult), Cindy Robinson as Chiyoko Fujiwara (Elder), Christian Swindler as Genya Tachibana (Old), Ben Diskin as Kyoji Ida, and Laura Post as Eiko Shimao. I never had the opportunity to watch the UK dub of the movie, so I can’t make the comparison but the US cast for this movie is phenomenal. It felt very natural and very fitting to the characters. That movie has been clean up as well as expected from a remaster. 

When the renowned Ginei Studios closes, filmmaker Genya Tachibana alongside his assistant are tasked to make a documentary about the reclusive star, Chiyoko Fujiwara, who had retired 30 years prior. As she retells her story, Genya and his crew are literally pulled into her memories where they witness her chance encounter with a mysterious man on the run from the police. Despite never knowing his name or his face, Chiyoko relentlessly pursues that man in a seamless blend of reality and memory that only Satoshi Kon could deliver.

Comparing the screener I was given compared to the stream in Amazon prime, the visual improvement is night and day. While I’m not the best in noticing details in animation like others in the internet, but it’s easily to tell this was well done. Usually in some remasters, you can tell the lost of texture and outlines. However, this remaster was able to keep all the details while giving us a less grainy image and a shaper look. While it has a lighter tone, the grays and muted colors of Satoshi Kon’s unique visual style remains. It’s a lot easier to appreciate the beautiful animation of the movie.

Overall, I enjoyed re-watching the movie. From the all new experience such as the better visuals and American voice acting, to the story telling. It’s a masterpiece that only the likes of the fate Satoshi Kon could deliver, and just like Perfect Blue, it’s worth the watch in the big screen, whether its your first time or not. I hope to see his movies remastered in the years to follow.

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Millennium Actress reviewed by Christian Chiok



A hallmark of excellence. There may be flaws, but they are negligible and won't cause massive damage.
How we score:  The Japanator reviews guide


Christian Chiok
Christian ChiokContributor   gamer profile

Christian has been a gamer since his early childhood. He's a big fan of the King of Fighters and the Metal Slug series. Additionally, Christian enjoys cooking, listening to music, watching anime ... more + disclosures



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