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(aka "Takeshi: Childhood Days" or "Shonen jidai" )


directed by Masahiro Shinoda
Japan 1990


A young boy is sent by his parents to live with relatives in the country. When it becomes too dangerous to stay in Tokyo after the Allies start dropping bombs.

Takeshi: Childhood Days was adapted from Hyozo Kashiwabara's novel "The Long Road". Takeshi: Childhood Days was directed by Masahiro Shinoda (Samurai Spy). Every area of this production excels the cinematography, the score and the pacing. Performance wise the entire cast are all very good in their respective roles, especially Tetsuya Fujita in the role of Shinji.

Most World War 2 movies center around adult characters. It was refreshing to see a film about World War 2 that is almost entirely told from a child's perspective. The film's main character is a young boy named Shinji who is sent to live with relatives in the country. The most compelling aspect of this film is the way that it examines the underlying hostility that the country children feel for the child from the big city.

From the moment that Shinji arrives, his place as an outsider is solidified when the children laugh at him when he introduces himself. Shinji is a bright boy and the other children wanting to improve their social status, they use him. The character that Shinji forms the strongest friendship is a boy named Takashi. All the other children's fear of Takashi has elevated him to the top of the social pyramid. One of the main sub plot's is the power struggle between Takashi and those who he has bullied. Just like countless other tormentors, Takashi comeuppance eventual comes. Of course it doesn't take long before new bullies emerge and another power struggle ensues.

Michael Den Boer

Theatrical Release: 1990

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DVD Review: Toho DVD - Region 2 - NTSC

Big thanks to Michael Den Boer for the Review!

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Toho DVD

Region 2 - NTSC

Runtime 1:56:44

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 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 Stereo)
Subtitles English, Japanese, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Toho DVD

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Theatrical trailer (16X9; 1:36)
• Two T.V. spots (16:9; 0:32), (16:9; 0:31)
• Booklet with liner notes (Text in Japanese)

DVD Release Date: April 28th, 2005

Chapters 24



Takeshi: Childhood Days is presented in a anamorphic widescreen that retains the film's intended aspect ratio. This is a clean looking progressive flagged transfer. Colors and flesh tones look accurate and black levels fare well. Also while there are some mild instances of edge enhancement it is never too excessive.

This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital stereo mix in Japanese. The audio is in good shape with no problems with distortion or any other audio defects. Dialog is always clear and everything sounds balanced. Removable English and Japanese subtitles have been included. The English subtitles are easy follow and error free.

All the extra content for this release the two T.V. spots, trailer and liner notes are all in Japanese only.

 - Michael Den Boer


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Toho DVD

Region 2 - NTSC

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