Fist of the North Star

Official Blurb:

"Civilisation as we know it has been destryed. Nuclear war has left the Planet a barren desert void of vegitation."

"Ruthless outlaw bikers, super-powerful mutants and dictators, eager to set up their own kingdoms, prey on the ragged survivors huddled in the ruins of the post-apocalyptic cities."

"Ken, aka Fist of the North Star, has been chosen as the world's saviour, thwarted at every attempt by jealous rivals, Jagi, Raoh and Shin, Ken fights to re-establish peace and rescue his kidnapped fiancee Julia."

"Fists fly, blood spurts, bones shatter, heads explode, and buildings crumble, in an animated action thriller to compare with the ledgendary Mad Max."

Creator:         Buronson/Tetsuo Hara
Director:        Toyoo Ashida
Copyright:       Toei Animation Co. Ltd.

Language Format: English Language
Running time:    112 mins
Certificate:     18
Label:           Manga Video
Catalogue no:    MANV 1001
Price:           £12.99
Release Date:    August 1992

Also available as part of the 'Warriors of the East' box set with
Ninja Scroll and Sword for Truth (cat. no. MANV 1206)


The Toei Animation HOKUTO NO KEN was based on graphic novels (manga) by Buronson & Tetsuo Hara. It's set in the future where nuclear war and pollution have left the Earth a barren desert devoid of vegetation. Ruthless outlaw bikers, super-powerful mutants and warlords prey on the few ragged human survivors huddled in the wrecks of cities. Ken, the Fist of the North Star, has been chosen as a saviour, but his efforts are thwarted by his mutant rivals Jagi, Raoh, and Shin. Ken soon loses his fiancee Julia and fights to rescue her.

This is a very violent piece of Anime - blood spurts, limbs are lopped off and large numbers of combatants slaughtered. There isn't much of a plot but there is some rock music on the soundtrack, and there is an ecological theme of sorts. Despite the 18 certificate the script is very childish; it's not clear why Manga Video released this naff item rather than the many much better examples of Anime they could have chosen instead. The best part of the tape is the AKIRA trailer. True, some of FIST's visuals are quite appealing and so is the violent action if you like that sort of thing; it's too unreal to be really revolting.

Verdict - best rented after a night of lager and curry. [Geoff Cowie]

Comment from newsgroups:

Michael Cruickshank:
BEWARE "FIST OF THE NORTH STAR"- (unless it's for laughs)

I saw the film last night. It was horrible. Half the audience left in the 
first ten minutes, the other half (myself included) laughed ourselves to 
the end. One benefit of the film was that all viewers felt some sort of 
bond with one another- "Gee, I can't understand why people left halfway 
through that.(wink, wink, nudge,nudge)" It's turned out to be a lot of 
fun but only because the movie was so awful.

E-mail feedback:

PA Shin 33
You jerks!  Hokuto No Ken was a kick ass series!  I first watched it when I
was 2 years old.  You don't seem to keep an open mind.  Plus it's the only
action series that I know of that one of the heroes actually dies!  Listen, I
don't know where you get your feedback from, but just watch the series, and if the
plot bothers you then just watch the series!  Those techniques kick ass! The
voices are better in japanese too.  Look just listen to my comments and think
about them.  Nobody really listens to what I have to say because I'm young.