Diesen Vergleich gibt’s nur auf englisch, allerdings werde ich etwas ähnliches machen, wenn die dt. Ausgabe verfügbar ist.
I already did something similar on my „older“ website when I compared the German and Japanese releases of 1.01 (in German) and then both with 1.11 (in German) and now a real Blu-ray comparison is possible because I got the UK version of Evangelion 1.11. Normally I would also own the US-Release by Funimation but I pre-ordered it at DVD Pacific, but did some restructuring and never fulfilled the order. Perhaps this was for the better because I think the UK version is more or less the US version with another packaging and a slightly different Blu-ray content, and I pre-ordered both of them. The biggest difference seems to be, that the US release was region coded to A and B, but the UK version seems to B only. The UK version even has the Funimation logo on the cover while it is published by Manga UK.
Official synopsis (UK):
The year is 2015, and half of the Earth’s population is dead, victims of the disaster called Second Impact! Answering a summons from his enigmatic father, 14-year-old Shinji Ikari arrives in the rebuilt city of Tokyo-3 just as a gigantic creature known as an Angel attacks! Forced into the cockpit of a giant bio-mechanical construct known as an Evangelion, Shinji must defend the city from the rampaging Angel or die trying!
Rebuilt from the ground up by creator Hideaki Anno, this is the definitive Evangelion for a new generation! Featuring a radically new storyline, completely new animation, additional CG plus never-before-seen extended footage.
The Japanese version is very hard to photopraph but looks great. The inner packaging reminds of the 1.01 release. The booklet is also just an extended version of the 1.10 and the rest of the contents is promotional material.
There’s no booklet but at least the back of the cover is used. It’s funny that they still use the „region code 2“-logo on the back even it’s actually called „B“ for Blu-rays.
Picture quality (5 of 5):
I watched the Japanese 1.11 Blu-ray three times and the UK version looks more or less the same. Just take a look at the screenshots, the colors look the same and both versions doesn’t seem to have any problems and the picture looks just perfect. The UK version even has a higher bitrate (35000kbps) than the Japanese BD (33379 kbps). The colors are much brighter than in the 1.01 versions and everything looks very vivid. Both BDs still have the finest video quality I experienced so far on Blu-ray. This is the Blu-ray to show people the advantages of anime on Blu-ray…till 2.22 comes^^.
Sound and subtitles (5 of 5):
The UK version „only“ has both track in Dolby TrueHD Audio 6.1, while the Japanese Blu-ray offers also a DTS-HD Master Audio 6.1 track and even a stereo mix. While the Japanese language TrueHD tracks have very similar bitrates, the English track on the UK BD was mixed in 24bit and got a higher bitrate (2658kbps compared to 2337 kbps). The surround mix makes great use of all speakers and I didn’t hear any problems. I just checked the subtitles for a short time, but they seem to be fine on the UK disc.
The menus are simple but look great nevertheless.
The UK BD’s menus are even simpler and I really like the color scheme of the Japanese better…
Disc extras (UK 2,5 of 5 / Japan 3 of 5):
Both discs offer the „making of“ „Rebuild of Evangelion: 1.01“ with its different music tracks and no commentary at all that shows different stages of different scenes and goes on for ~16 minutes. The video is 4:3, but offers HD even while the pre-visualization videos are not supposed to be in HD. Then there’s the „music video“ of „Angel of Doom“ on both discs (~2:20). While the UK version only offers 3 versions of the „Beautiful World“-trailer the Japanese BD also offers 3 variants of the „Fly me to the Moon“ trailer and 15 TV spots for the DVD and BD releases. Both discs have the short teasers for the movie. The Japanese version also has the whole script for reading and offers an Evangelion 2.0 trailer.
The extras are nothing special but I think the Japanese wanted the people to buy the artbooks and so on to get more information about the movie^^;.
My opinion about the movie (4,5 of 5):
Evangelion is my favorite anime franchise and I really love this movie. It summarizes the story very well and the action sequences are just spectacular. The slightly updated character design is still great and the combination of computer animation and normal drawings works most times well. But while the story is much more understandable than before I think the character development worked in the TV series a little bit better, and this part of the story seemed to be a little bit rushed. As an Evangelion fanboy I only gave it 4,5 of 5 to be able to show the quality difference of Evangelion 2.22 better^^ (Evangelion 2.0 was the best thing I saw in cinemas for a long time).
I used DGIndex for the screenshots and the first one is always the Japanese and the second is the UK. Sometimes I missed a frame but it should be good enough to see that there’s no big difference between both discs. Really good work Funimation / Manga UK!
If you like Evangelion, buy this Blu-ray. If you already own 1.01, buy it to actually see something in some scenes for the first time and to experience how good anime can look in HD. I think the Funimation BD will probably look the same, so I would recommend to get the US-version because it offers nicer packaging and even has a booklet. When the German version is available, I will also take a look at it.