Redline is a work of art, drenched in adrenaline, petrol fumes and polished chrome.
The story, such as it is, covers a series of illegal road races across the galaxy and the racers, mechanics and agents who take part. We follow "Sweet" JP, a rockabilly-alike racer who just can't catch a lucky break. Can he win the Yellowline race and qualify for the most famous race around, the Redline? (Hmmmm, tricky!)
Based on plot alone, you'd be hard-pressed to award it two stars. However, that would short-change a movie that is about excitement and speed - I do not like movies where you've got to "turn off your brain" but this doesn't patronise you with a bad plot to overlook: it bypasses a plot altogether and takes you to the final scene from the off!
The animation is beautifully hand-drawn, bursting with vibrant colour. The artistic style strongly reminds me of the early-90s Manga animes - a welcome throwback when most modern productions generally eschew crazy aliens, biomech monstrosities and supercharged chrome hotrods. The sound is also impressive - pulsing techno music accompanies the action as the excitement builds. The English dub is seamless, utilising the standard pool of dub voice actors.
Seemingly influenced by Death Race 2000, Wacky Races and Speed Racer, Redline is essentially one exciting chase scene from start to finish. We watch as entertaining racers, lifted above their paper-thin characterisation by the animation, try to out-gun, out-smart and out-accelerate the next competitor.
Watch it when you're in the mood for some excitement, turn up the sound, grab a beer and enjoy this decadent (seven years in production!) masterpiece.