Thursday, January 19, 2012

Wicked Anime Reviews #24 Redline

Anime reviews delivered directly to the face!

In one sentence:
JP wants to enter the Redline, an underground racing tournament, but there's a lot standing in his way and that doesn't even include the amount of hostility the racers will be facing once they drop down on the planet picked for the race.

Redline is, at its heart, an action movie. If you’re looking for fully fleshed out characters that change your world views or a plot rooted into some deep philosophical concept (such as whether or not cheese is a way of life) then you’re in the wrong place. This is a movie that knows exactly what it is: fun. I’m actually not into racing in the slightest and yet I was enthralled with this movie. I couldn’t ask for a better adrenaline rush in a shinier package.

What rocks:
- Jaw-dropping animation and art style!
Not only are the aesthetics unique but the fluidity of the animation tops most OVAs out there. This is pure eye candy that leaves you in awe at the work put into this and might possibly give you cavities with how sweet this is. Many take this for granted that this is one of the reasons we have Anime in the first place: the art/animation. Otherwise we could simply watch live action. It’s also important to note that everything is animated here unlike most of the Anime in the last decade or so that opt to use computer animation for objects, vehicles, and mecha. It’s a rare visual treat.

- Non-stereotypical characters.
This is another category where Redline thankfully ignores current Anime trends. Redline doesn’t hand us cookie-cutter characters and instead opts to give us a mixture of vibrant and quirky side characters while the two main characters (JP and Sonoshee) act very realistically.

- Kept in the loop.
Normally something this fast-paced with this type of art style would be difficult to keep track of (seeing as it’s not so much showing you events as it is throwing them at you) but there are many helping hands. Not only are there announcers for the races but plenty of side characters keeping track of the events unfolding such as the military and government of Roboworld. If you aren’t able to read subs quickly though then it might make it a little difficult to keep track of things and hopefully they’ll make a high quality dub soon enough so you won’t have to multitask.

- High octane action.
Thanks to the races having zero rules: weapons, magic, outlandish tactics, and acting like a dick are totally allowed. This sets up for a lot of crazy scenarios and makes the races that much more exciting. All of this action is accompanied by upbeat music that fits the mood flawlessly.

- Sci-fi setting.
Seeing these different worlds and alien races makes you want to explore this universe more and more.

- Well worth repeated watches.
Thanks to the war on the senses that this movie brings, you’ll want to watch it multiple times and it never gets dull thanks to being able to catch new details during each viewing.

What sucks:
- Minimal plot.
Let me clarify that it isn’t a bad plot. It’s just that it’s not all that important to the overall experience. This can easily be blamed on the fact that this is a movie about racing. This isn’t the usual standard fare of Anime where characters are trying to save the world or defeat some kind of enemy. The stakes just aren’t that high. While the danger and drama is there with these characters risking their lives to be in this race, there isn’t much more to it than that.

- Introducing too many characters.
No one gets a chance to shine because there are just too many involved. This is yet again more of an issue with the fact that the movie centers around racing. You need drivers (many of the cars have two drivers to ramp up that number), mechanics, announcers, spectators, and then you’ve got the antagonists of Roboworld and even the mafia involved. To top it off there are side characters introduced to either flesh out some of the racers or immerse us by showing off different alien species. The sheer number of characters is an almost insane amount for any movie to tackle and yet almost all of them are pretty necessary.

This is Kylak signing out to race to see how many more posts I can finish.


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