Requiem from the Darkness
Volume 4 - Eternal Rest

Starring (voice- English): Grant George, Kirsty Pape, Michael McConnahie and Steve Kramer
RRP: 19.99
Certificate: 15
Available 05 March 2007

In Japan, at the end of the nineteenth century, an aspiring author, Momosuke, leaves the city in search of a hundred ghost stories to form his book. On the road he meets up with Nagamimi, Mataichi and Ogin, a group whose purpose it is to travel the land punishing wrong doers in a manner which fits their crimes...

Based on the novel by Natsuhiko Kyogoku, Volume Four of Requiem from the Darkness - Eternal Rest - covers episodes eleven to thirteen of this most gothic of anime shows. Stylistically the show remains an eclectic mix of animation, which continues to keep the viewer off balance, adding to the overall unsettling experience and giving this anime its own distinctive look. Having only reviewed Volume Two and now Four my grasp on any continuity is a little fractured, which is a shame as these are the last three episodes of the series.

Episode eleven, Marine Spirits, and we are introduced to Seven Man Point, an area where sailors routinely disappear. Momosuke, now separated from the others, investigates stories of sea ghosts after he is attacked. Ogin advises him to return to Edo, however, Momosuki has other ideas.

Episode twelve, The Death Spirits of Seven Man Point - Part 1, and the episodes just get darker and more violent. Momosuke finds out more about the curse of Seven Man Point. Death is growing at an exponential rate and the villagers are killing each other in an effort to break the curse. Monosuke meets a Ronin who has turned his back on his master in order to investigate his wife's disappearance.

Episode thirteen, The Death Spirits of Seven Man Point Part 2, and events finally are coming to a head - even Monosuke feels that something horrible is about to happen. To be honest, the fear over the Lady of the Point is so strong that just about everybody is loosing their minds, and fear turns to violence and murder.

What can I say other than what a great ending to a great series. Certainly the show knew to quit whilst it was ahead. I think that if it had gone on any longer then its individuality would have been diluted.

Audio remains a disappointing English or Japanese Stereo, with English subtitles; extras are likewise limited to two art galleries and some trailers for other shows. A real shame given the atmospheric nature of the show, a nice 5.1 mix would have made the whole thing creepier. It is pretty creepy in stereo.

That said, this is really a high quality show which should find a home in any anime fans collection.

Charles Packer

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