Growing up in the 1980’s Anime was ready to explode in America in no small part thanks to imports of Akira and Vampire Hunter D. I had strange recollections of both of these movies from childhood and since I’ve been recently been trying to broaden my horizons with anime and manga I rewatched the 1985 version of the movie as well as the 2000 movie, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust.
Watching them as adults I thought both movies were ok, but it was the premise and the atmosphere that made it so interesting and dynamic. Basically, the gist is that in the far flung future things get a little crazy and the entire world more or less blows itself up thanks to nuclear war. Humanity has to build itself up from scratch since most of the planet is very poor and destitute but advanced technology does exist. Vampires which once ruled this planet when humanity was its lowest have slowly become extinct and hunted down. This mixes up genres enough to be familiar yet unique. What you have is a very gothic Castlevania type tone that is also mystical but incorporates technology. For example, the people ride on electronic horses and while conventional medieval weapons exist, people also have guns.