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The Prince of Tennis - The Two Samurai: The first game

Prince of Tennis - Futari no Samurai movie poster
Directed by Takayuki Hamana
Produced by Tetsu Kawaguchi
Susumu Matsuyama
Tomoko Takahashi
Written by Original story:
Takeshi Konomi
Screenplay:
Jun Maekawa
Music by Cher Watanabe
Cinematography Hisashi Ezura
Editing by Junichi Uematsu
Distributed by Shochiku
Release date(s) January 29, 2005 (Japan)
Running time 60 min.
Language Japanese

The Prince of Tennis - The Two Samurai: The First Game (テニスの王子様 二人のサムライ The First Game Tenisu no Ōji-sama Futari no Samurai The First Game ?) is the first Prince of Tennis film. Although never explicitly stated, the story appears to take place shortly after Ryoma returns from the U.S. Open, given that he mentions being on a cruise during the Open.

Contents

Plot

Synopsis

The Seishun Academy Middle School tennis regulars are invited on a cruise by Sakurafubuki Hikomaro to play a match with his own tennis team. All seems well at first, but then a new character steps in. Ryoga Echizen is introduced as Ryoma's older brother (by adoption). Everybody is flabbergasted, including Ryoma himself. Shortly thereafter, the team begin to notice that something is strange, and even fake, about the cruise ship, and everyone aboard. Tezuka and Oishi soon find out that they are actually part of an illegal gambling plot. If they purposely lose their matches the next day, Sakurafubuki will rake in a lot of money from people that have betted on Seigaku winning. But, should they choose not to throw the matches, the team faces not returning to Japan in one piece. Tezuka refuses to give in and lose, as does the rest of the team.

Summary

The Seishun Academy Middle School tennis regulars are invited on a cruise by Sakurafubuki Hikomaro to play a match with his own tennis team. Aboard the cruise ship, Ryoga Echizen introduces himself to the team as Ryoma's older brother. Ryoma reveals that Ryoga was adopted by Nanjiroh many years ago, when they lived in America. That evening, at a banquet dinner, Takashi Kawamura remarks that the food did not taste as expensive as it looked. In the bathroom, Inui Sadaharu discovers that the marble on the wall is fake. It becomes clear that something is not right. The next day, Sakurafubuki reveals to Tezuka and Oishi that they are actually part of an illegal gambling plot. If they purposely lose their matches the next day, Sakurafubuki will rake in a lot of money from people that have betted on Seigaku winning. But, should they choose to win the matches, the team faces not returning to Japan in one piece.

Everyone on the ship are either gamblers or Sakurafubuki's henchmen, it is discovered. Therefore, Seigaku can only trust themselves. The team tries to form a plan of action, but they are ultimately held hostage by Sakurafubuki's chef. Only Tezuka, Fuji, and Echizen are allowed to leave to play their matches. Tezuka and Fuji win their matches easily. Echizen Ryoga decides to betray Sakurafubuki in order to play a match against his brother to see who's the better player.

Meanwhile, the rest of the team escape from the room where the chef held them hostage (thanks to Inui's clever usage of his Juice), and then are forced to engage in a rather humorous run from the corrupt crew members. In the end, they are recaptured by Sakurafubuki, and their hands are bound. Ryoma realizes that his teammates' lives are at risk as he continues to play against his brother.

Ryoga decides that he will not be Sakurafubuki's pawn any longer, and fires a tennis ball straight into his forehead. This allows the rest of the team to escape once again. As Ryoma and Ryoga's match continues, a terrible storm brews, forcing everyone on the ship to [[evacuate[[ through the lifeboats. Seigaku keeps order throughout the panic, although Momoshiro and Eiji do end up falling overboard. The Echizen brothers keep playing their match, even as an enormous tidal wave descends upon the cruise ship. They seem unfazed as they play their match underwater. As is common during the matches in the Prince of Tennis series, the match defies all physical law.

In the end, Ryoma is the match's victor when the ball drops onto Ryoga's side of the net, despite that the net is gone and a large light has crashed across the court. Ryoga accepts his defeat and remarks that Ryoma's tennis certainly has improved. The two escape via Ryoga's jet ski, and Ryoma is reuinted with his team, who have all escaped the ship unharmed. Ryoga takes Ryoma's hat and gives him an orange and tells him to find his Grand Dream. After Ryoga's chat, he rides his jet ski into the sunset.

Atobe Keigo then arrives at the scene and witnesses Sakurafubuki being arrested. In an earlier phone conversation with Oshitari Yuushi, who also appeared along Gakuto Mukahi, Atobe remarked that he did not know Sakurafubuki and suspected that Seigaku was involved in a scam.

Characters

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Ryoga Echizen

Ryoga Echizen (越前 龍雅 Echizen Ryōga ?) is the antagonist turned protagonist in the film. Ryoga is the adopted son of Nanjiro Echizen, a former professional tennis player. He bears a strong resemblance to Ryoma with his hazel eyes and black-green hair. While the Echizen family were in America, Ryoga was taken in by Nanjiro and lived with them for a time. His tennis technique is modeled on that of Nanjiro. When he left the Echizen's home, he was hired by the billionaire Sakurafubuki Hikomaro to play tennis for him in his gambling schemes. In the flashbacks, it showed that he was rather close to Ryoma. At first he said that Ryoma's tennis was awful (which was true when he was about five or so). It was shown that Ryoga's skills were far superior, but as Ryoma continued to improve, Ryoga began spending more time with him. It is unknown why he ran away, possibly that he was just bored with home. In the fourth OVA, Another Story, Ryoga makes another appearance. Ryoga is voiced by Yuuta Yamazaki.

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Trivia

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  • The movie premiere aired after another short movie spun off from the series, Atobe's Gift - Tennis no Ojisama Movie Special.
  • Ryoga Echizen is said to be Ryoma's older brother by adoption, despite the fact that they are quite similar in appearance. It is never revealed precisely why Nanjiroh took Ryoga in.
  • This movie is the first time weapon violence was ever used in the Prince of Tennis series. There is usage of guns and knives, and Eiji Kikumaru is even shot at (luckily he dodges just in time).

References

External links


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