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  1. Riding Bean (ライディング・ビーン) ARTMIC/Youmex/AIC/Toshiba EMI, 1989 AnimEigo, 1990, 2002 Directed by Yasuo Hasegawa Based on characters created by Kenichi Sonoda (Gunsmith Cats, Bubblegum Crisis) Running Time: 46 minutes Not Rated (Suggested 16-Up). Contains graphic violence, nudity, mature situations and profanity. Cast (Japanese) Hideyuki Tanaka (Otacon in Metal Gear Solid) as Bean Bandit Naoko Matsui (Inez in Martian Successor Nadesico, Pai in Dangaioh) as Rally Vincent Mami Koyama (Chiyoko in Millennium Actress, Oyuki in The Dagger of Kamui) as Semmerling Megumi Hayashibara (you already know most of her roles...) as Carrie Kei Tomiyama (1938-1995) (Susumu in Uchuu Senkan Yamato, Duke Fleed in UFO Robo Grendizer) as Detective Percy Chieko Honda (Kurumi in Kimagure Orange Road, Miku in Hades Project Zeorymer) as Chelsea Grimwood Nobuo Tobita (Kamille in Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam, Aoshima in Ah! My Goddess) as Dick Jun Hazumi as George Grimwood Cast (English) Who cares? These guys suck! Synopsis Bean Bandit and his partner Rally Vincent are couriers for hire - transporting clients and delivering goods in Bean's custom sports car "Buff the Roadbuster" for a hefty price. But when they are hired to escort a kidnapped girl named Chelsea to her home, they don't realize they're being framed for kidnapping as their former clients Semmerling and Carrie plan their escape with Chelsea's father and the ransom money. Story: B+ Long before Gunsmith Cats existed, there was this one-shot OAV that had everything a guy could ever dream of: guns, girls and fast cars. Riding Bean was one of the first few direct-to-video anime titles licensed in the U.S. Like most action films, Riding Bean has a shallow plot, but it's compensated with some likeable characters and a heaping of comedy. It's like watching The Blues Brothers and Smokey and the Bandit in anime form. Animation: B+ The character designs by Sonoda are a favorite among many hardcore anime fans, not to mention the Roadbuster and Percy's 1967 Mustang Shelby GT500 (a similar one also appears in GSC). Animation quality is similar to Bubblegum Crisis (which was produced by the same companies, anyway), but even by today's standards, Riding Bean boasts one of the best car chases ever animated. Soundtrack: B+ Since the story takes place in Chicago, the soundtrack consists of American jazz and rock. Not really something to warrant a CD purchase, but still goes well with the anime. Sub vs. Dub Don't even bother with the dub. Not only does the voice acting suck, the re-recorded sound effects are even worse. DVD Extras: C- Just a gallery and the original Japanese trailer. Nothing else.Blu-ray review coming soon. The Bottom Line Next to Gunsmith Cats, Riding Bean is a must-buy for anime fans who also dig cars and guns. Reference Anime News Network
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