Magic Boy (1961) (MOD)

Magically gifted boy Sasuke lives in peace, deep in the forest with his animal pals and Oyu, his elder sister.

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Magic Boy (1961) (MOD)


by PowerReviews
Magic Boy (1961)

(based on 1 review)

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Reviewed by 1 customer

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(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)


Before Miyazaki there was Magic Boy!

By Jonhayashi1

from New York, Long Island

About Me Collector, Hand Drawn Animator, Movie Buff

Verified Reviewer


  • Action-packed
  • Classic
  • Engaging
  • Entertaining
  • Funny
  • Suspensful Fantasy Anime


    Best Uses

    • Entertainment
    • Fantasy Anime Fans

    Comments about Magic Boy (1961):

    This is another example of why it's great that there is a Warner Archive! Whether its an odd fun movie such as THE SEVEN FACES OF DR. LAO or 1960s HB cartoons with ALEX TOTH character designs such as HERCULOIDS and MIGHTY MIGHTOR or an early Japanese anime movie titled MAGIC BOY!

    I first found out about this movie in the last issue of ANIMERICA an Anime magazine that described Japan's early animated features including MAGIC BOY. The article told me about Japanese animation's first exposure to the U.S. in the form of VHS cassettes! Now years later DVDs have become the format to experience Anime and Hayeo Miyazaki has had great success in Japan and other countries with his hand drawn animated features. His reportedly last animated feature, THE WIND RISES I both watched and enjoyed!

    So I was glad to see that one of the early Japan animated movies, MAGIC BOY is available on Warner Archive and I quickly ordered it! The letterboxed movie print has high quality picture and sound with vibrant colour! And I enjoyed the combination of full animation with the japanese mythology and magic! Brave boy Sazuke had to learn magic to defeat and destroy the evil witch princess, Yakusha! He got his training from an old hermit wizard who reminded me of the old man who trained David Carradine in KUNG FU! "You have much to learn young grasshopper!" One can also think of Luke Skywalker being trained by both Obi Wan Kenobi and Yoda as I watched Sazuke learning magic and becoming skilled at combat to fight the witch!

    The artwork shows scences that illustrate life in ancient Japan combined with an errie supernatural feeling in the animation of the witch who wears a white kimono and floats like an errie spector with a scarey white face like a kubuke theater actress on a Japanese stage. Her dance in front of her bandit men is like a stage performance in a Kubuke theater! Much of this movie has the strange weirdness that would resurface later in such Miyazaki films such as SPIRITED AWAY and HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE!

    While some of the cute animal scenes fall a little flat, the scene where the witch as a giant swimming salamader swallowing a pair of cute deer is both dramatic and sad and this motivates Sazuke to rid Japan of this witch! 2 bungling bandits are frustrated by a cute but exasperating little girl who wants her box chest back from these thieves! Eventually these 2 protect the girl and side with the good guys!

    All this led up to the battle of Sasuke and Yakusha! And what a battle it is! As Sazuke chased the witch she flew like a vicious ghost and as Sazuke attacked her she aged and changed to a frightening skeleton! Desperatly she spat fire at him but he threw a magic dagger at her and it stabbed her in the skull and killed her!! The animaters looked like they were influenced by the death of the Queen in Disney's SNOW WHITE but decided to make their climax more frightening! So parents may want to keep their 5 year olds from seeing this movie until they are older! But it's a thrilling climax for both older kids and this still older reviewer! So I'm glad I have this video! DVD has no scence selection menu but it does have chapter stops that you can select by pushing the number buttons on your remote! The scarey scence I described is on chapter 22! So if Warner Archive would get the anime PANDA AND THE MAGIC SERPENT otherwise known as THE LEGEND OF THE WHITE SNAKE as a restored print with the same picture and sound quality as MAGIC BOY on DVD-R I would gladly order it!! Keep the early Animes coming Warner Archive!

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