(aka "Shining Boy and Little Randy" or "Hoshi ni natta shonen" )


directed by Shunsaku Kawake
Japan 2005


Kawage Shunsaku makes his feature length directorial debut with Shining Boy and Little Randy, a bittersweet tale of a young boy and his pet elephant! Known in Japan as Hoshini Natta Shonen, the film stars Yagira Yuya, winner of the Best Actor prize at the Cannes Film Festival for his work in Nobody Knows, as Tetsu, a lonely teenager with an extraordinary home life. Unlike most kids, Tetsu lives on Hokkaido animal ranch run by his mother (Tokiwa Takako) and his stepfather (Takahashi Katsumi), both of whom make their living by renting out their animals for work in television and film. With a stable of creatures that includes everything from dogs and cats to even a chimp, one would think this kind of fantasy life would n appeal to a boy like Tetsu, but unfortunately, his family's unusual business becomes a sore point at school, as he is constantly teased by bullies.

To liven up their sagging business, the family purchases an elephant, and Tetsu quickly comes to like the new arrival. A second elephant named Randy is soon added to the mix, but quickly proves impossible for Tetsu to take care of. Initially, Tetsu is discouraged, but when he learns of a school in Thailand for elephant riders, he begs his mother to let him enroll. She eventually agrees, and Tetsu sets off for a new life, full of various trials and tribulations. With his folksy, tough-talking grandma (Baisho Mitsuko) and cute schoolmate Emi (Yu Aoi) cheering him on, Tetsu seems ready for this new challenge, but what happens next, no audience member will anticipate! Featuring a shocking twist sure to leave viewers talking about it long after the film is over, Kawage Shunsaku's Shining Boy and Little Randy is a winning, unconventional film that is certain to gain an even larger
audience on DVD!


Theatrical Release: 16 July 2005

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DVD Review: Toho (Special Edition - Japanese Version) - Region 2 - NTSC

Big thanks to Luiz R. for the Review!

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Region 2 - NTSC

Runtime 113 min

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.43 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1), Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Subtitles Japanese, English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Toho

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• 2-Disc Eco-Package
• Dual-Layered DVD
• THX Optimizer
• Making Of
• Interviews
• Deleted Scenes
• Music Video
• Trailers, Teasers, Games...
• THX Glasses

DVD Release Date: January 27th, 2006
Special Eco-Package

Chapters 22




This is my reference quality DVD, among all the DVDs I have and tested this one is the best in image and sound quality. So, everything here is excellent...

What calls my attention more about this DVD is the saturation, no other DVD has such great colors without creating some "artifacts" or color noise. Here the image is clean with a very nice contrast and sharpness, even in dark scenes the colors are clear and the blacks look quite precise. Sometimes I can see color contours that look like "Chromatic Aberrations", but I believe this is done on purpose to cause a more "magical" feeling to the image and this (Chromatic aberrations) is also a problem more relative to lenses instead of image manipulation. Keep in mind that his is a DVD, and if you compare with High Definition Disc, it obviously has its limitations. What i see here is the quality being pushed to this limit (DVD limit) or very close to it in my opinion.

The package is made of an eco-friendly material beautifully designed, one of a kind. It comes with 2 discs, one booklet, a paper elephant plus a THX Glass that you should use to optimize your system with the THX Optimizer.

There are plenty of good quality extras here, interviews with the cast and director, video clips, making of and even some games. The most interesting in my opinion is the making of, but none of the extras have subtitles what makes the interviews useless to English audiences. Lack of subtitles in Japanese releases is the major drawback in my opinion, this is no different but still a good purchase. There is also a normal edition available, I haven't seen it but I believe it has the same transfer and only comes with the extras contained in the first DVD here, games, trailers, teasers.

 - Luiz R.





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CLICK to order from:

Thinking of buying from YesAsia? CLICK HERE and use THIS UPDATED BEAVER PAGE to source their very best...



Region 2 - NTSC




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