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ADV Films presents

Power Stone #5: Friends and Enemies (1999)

"This is getting tense!"- Falcon (Robert Tinkler)

Stars: Robert Tinkler, William Colgate, Stephanie Morgenstern
Other Stars: Robert Smith, Damon D'Oliveira, Maurice Dean Wint
Director: Takamiro Oomori

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (mild animated violence)
Run Time: 01h:20m:22s
Release Date: 2002-05-21
Genre: anime

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer
C+ C+B+B D-


DVD Review

Friends and Enemies is the next to last volume of Power Stone, and while not much has changed here, the pace seems to be picking up a bit. Continuing right about where the previous disc left off, Falcon and friends are stuck in Dust Town hoping to rescue other friends from the clutches of some local tribes. What he doesn't know, however, is that the Soaring Eagle tribe is not to blame for the kidnapping of his friends; in fact, the local Sherrif has more explaining to do than anyone else. Eventually Falcon befriends the leader of the tribe (Galuda, another character from the original video game) and learns that it is his old enemies Octo and Pus (the Octopus Brothers) who are responsible for all the problems there. He loses more Power Stones to their boss, Kraken, and must chase him down after dealing with Dust Town.

Kraken, who is reduced to an embarrassing, fumbling villain rather than the immensely powerful creep of the game, turns out to be a crafty, though silly foe, and Falcon has his hands full. The disc takes an interesting turn when he runs into his long-time hero Valgas, but has to fight him to get his Power Stones back. The Saturday morning nature of the series becomes less annoying in this volume, and it seems the creators have realized that, with limited life left in the show, they need to get the ball rolling. All the silly side-plots and completely bland "adventures" may still be present in small doses, but the general pace has been upgraded so that things move quicker and more progress is made. This certainly makes Power Stone much easier to watch (finally), but doesn't dramatically raise its substance.

It's strange that the series waited to so long to introduce certain characters and get to certain points, but when all is said and done, the biggest mistake was investing so much time in a quest that never produces much in the way of results. Falcon is STILL looking for his father, but yet our "hero" manages to bungle his way into constantly losing friends and Power Stones. Not exactly the kind of the main character that instills much confidence. And it is that reason why, even 5 volumes in, Power Stone is still nothing more than light fare.

Rating for Style: C+
Rating for Substance: C+


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: Although a little grainy and rough at times, the transfer seems to be an accurate representation of the hand-drawn cels and the work on the backgrounds. Although there are no brilliant colors or complex art schemes, that seems to be the nature of the show itself; nothing to do with the disc.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishyes

Audio Transfer Review: The stereo soundtrack is pretty much what you would expect; very little in the way of elaborate effects or soundscapes, but a basic way of getting the show's effects across. Nothing is distorted or harsh, but the audio is not all that advanced either.

Audio Transfer Grade:

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 20 cues and remote access
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: There are no additional features on the disc. As with previous volumes, there is simply one menu for episode selection and no chapter menu. There is also no time indexing on this disc, which is a bit annoying for those who like seeing the time data on the disc.

Extras Grade: D-

Final Comments

Power Stone's next volume promises to wrap a few things up and finally get around to concluding all the loose ends and open character plots. The problem is, that isn't a very exciting prospect due to the "so-so" nature of the show. I look forward to a somewhat improved conclusion.

Dan Lopez 2002-08-14