This is one of those anime that fall into an increasingly common category, whether it be for good or for bad. I would best describe this category as the short, violent, vague-storylined anime movie. Let me
go into more detail about what I mean, for I think this is a trend worth questioning, and should give us insight into the criticisms I have for "X".
First of all, this type of anime seems to have excellent storylines. However, due to their short length( usually 60-75 min.), these potentially stellar stories don't have time to come full circle and wrap themselves up properly, giving a woeful lack of explanation and details.
The same holds true for the character development. The character designs for the anime in particular are incredible. The heroes and villians alike have awesome powers and look very cool. However, the movie is over before we ever have a chance to really find out anything about them. I can't help but think what an awesome OVA series this would have made. That would have given it more time to fully explore the storyline and characters. I just wanted more than what I got.
Now, since my complaints can be summed up as wanting more of this movie than was availible, there obviously must be some pretty good things about this movie. As I stated above the story and character design is excellent. The plot draws you in, the setting is appropriately dark and foreboding, and the characters are a nice mix of serious hardcases and lighthearted jokers. The animation quality and soundtrack are also quite nice. However, I have some issues with the dubbing. Don't get me wrong; I think the voice-actors did a good job. My problem is actually with the recording. I usually never whine over technical details, but the voices sound like they were spoken into a tin can. Maybe I'm imagining this, but they must have done something wrong with the recording, because their is just this slight off-pitch echo to the voices that drives me nuts. Should this affect your decision about purchasing this anime? No, I just though it needed to be pointed out.
Now for a bit about this great story. This anime deals with a young man named Kamui. At the beginning, his mother pulls a magic sword out of her body, gives iit to Kamui, and promptly explodes into fleshy gibs, which would be strange anywhere besides in anime. Kamui is then drawn to Tokyo, where, after witnessing a mutually fatal battle between two sorcerers, he is reunited with his childhood friends, Fuma and Kotori. However, he has hardly joined, when he is attacked by two men with strange powers. Using his own formidable destructive powers, Kamui engages them in combat. During the battle, a group of powerful allies arrive and drive the villians away. They take Kamui to the psychic, Hinoto, who uses dreams to reveal a terrible destiny to Kamui. As the story goes on, we see Kamui and the others head down a dark path of death and sorrow, as they struggle to prevent the approaching Apocalypse. "X" is an action-packed anime with a great story, but is severely hampered by its short running-time. I wish it had been longer. I give "X" a 7 out of 10.