DVD Title
Lone Wolf and Cub: White Heaven in Hell
International Title
Lone Wolf and Cub: White Heaven in Hell
DVD Length Original Length
83 Minutes 83 Minutes
Company Year of Manufacture
AnimEigo 2004
Language Subtitles
Japanese English
Region Number of Discs
1 1
Aspect Ratio Sound
2.35:1 (Anamorphic) 2.0 Mono
Menus (English)
Chapters (10)
Trailers: Lone Wolf and Cub: White Heaven in Hell, Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman, Lady Snowblood, Lady Snowblood: Love Song of Vengeance
Program Notes (English)
Complete film and DVD Credits (English)

For the final offering in the Lone Wolf and Cub series, AnimEigo actually reverts to their old self to offer another decent title to their name. After a large number of inadequate releases, with more still to come from the company, White Heaven in Hell reminds people why they used to look foreword to the firm's DVDs at one point in time. All in all, this release excels in both the video and audio departments, although, like all of their titles, the extras are lacking.

 Video: Star Rating

While not flawless, the video presentation on White Heaven in Hell still deserves high marks as a good portion of the presentation is done exceedingly well. From the colors, which are all spot on and vibrant, to the brightness level, which makes all of the scenes visible while not washing out the snow sequences, most everything here is top notch. Digital inconsistencies is another example of this, as none are inherently noticeable, while the film also looks naturally sharp without the aid of edge enhancement. In terms of noise levels, there is a little grain present but nothing bad.

In regards to the quality of the print used in the transfer, it's here where the disc falters a little. For the most part the print looks good. There are some scratches to be seen, though, often appearing, in noticeable numbers, only during sequences where snow is falling in front of the camera. Due to this being confined to only a certain variety of scenes, this might have been on account that AnimEigo's restoration process had trouble dealing with the snow already falling in front of the camera, so these sequences were avoided.

White Heaven in Hell is presented in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1, and is Anamorphic for widescreen TVs.


The audio presentation is done well on this disc, although it's nothing special. There is one audio track present, which is a 2.0 Japanese mono track. The track itself is in good shape, with no pops or crackles, although a stereo or surround presentation would have made a nice addition alongside this track.

The audio is accompanied by English subtitles, which can be toggled on or off. The subtitles are also color coded, so it's easy to tell when more than one character is speaking during a particular scene. The subtitles are available in two types: a general one, and one that only subtitles onscreen Japanese text.

 Extras: Star Rating

No surprises here if one has picked up an AnimEigo disc before. This release isn't necessarily bare bones, but there isn't much of interest here all the same. To round the extras out, there are four trailers (Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman, Lady Snowblood, Lady Snowblood: Love Song of Vengeance and the film's own trailer), and program notes (text based). The latter is standard amongst nearly all of the company's titles, although they seem to have taken extra measurers with this release as there are 22 screens worth of information that covers the time period and locations.


Bottom line, White Heaven in Hell is a good release, if one doesn't mind the lack of extras. It's still a shame that the disc tends to retail for so much, but, unlike some of the company's other DVDs, at least the video and audio quality here are up to standards.

This disc is also featured in the box set: Lone Wolf and Cub: DVD Collector's Edition Box.

- Anthony Romero  
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