The first feature Katsuhiro Otomo has written and directed since his watershed Akira
offers a fantastic, sepia-toned vision of the past-as-future. In place of the dystopic Neo-Tokyo of Akira, Steamboy
is set in England in 1866. Young Ray Steam receives a Steam Ball, a mysterious, powerful device, from his inventor grandfather. Governments and businesses covet the Steam Ball, and Ray finds himself in a murderous conflict over its possession. He's also caught between his father, a 19th century Darth Vader who builds terrible weapons for an American arms merchant, and his grandfather, who believes science should improve people's lives. Otomo uses computer graphics to create dazzling visuals that few recent films--animated or live action--can match: monumental systems of gears and pistons; machines that dwarf the Tower of London; antique weapons of mass destruction. But the dazzling imagery can't disguise the lack of a coherent plot and the flimsiness of the characters. --Charles Solomon, Amazon.com
From the leader in animé Katsuhiro Otomo (Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis, Memories), comes his first feature- length directorial project since his breakthrough film (Akira). Ten years in the making, witha total budget of $22 million, Steamboy is the most expensive Japanese animé production ever. A retro science-fiction epic set in Victorian England, Steamboy features an inventor prodigy named Ray Steam, who receives a mysterious metal ball containing a new form of energy capable of powering an entire nation, the Steam Ball. Young Ray Steam must use the Steam Ball to fight evil, redeem his family, and save London from destruction. With more than 180,000 drawings and 400 CG cuts, Steamboy is one of the most elaborate animated features ever created. Steamboy will be brought to life with an outstanding ensemble voiceover cast including Anna Paquin (X-Men), Patrick Stewart (X-Men), and Alfred Molina (Spider-man 2).