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4.2 out of 5 stars
Appleseed [DVD]
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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on 12 February 2007
Visually this movie is absolutely top drawer. Wether you like 3D animated movies or not this will have your yaw heading for the floor in minutes. The semi-cell-shaded appearance allows it to keep it's traditional Anime theme but the slickness and pure quality of the 3D animations is breathtaking. Unlike the likes of Final Fantasy, it doesn't try to look real, it tries to look like Anime. In the context of a movie composed from a previous Anime OVA that makes it more fraithful to its roots.

That much being said I found the plot was a little shallow in places. I don't know if the story didn't translate 100% to animation or wether simply compressing the serialized story into one movie left it a little light on detail. It could just be that having cut my teeth on EVA and GiTS/SAC this doesn't quite push all the buttons. Either way it was an extremely entertaining watch, and will keep most Anime enthusiasts entertained, just don't expect any deep thinking or mega-mind-melting psychology. 4 stars - mostly for the visual experience.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
The animation of this Appleseed re-make is nothing short of breathtaking. The mecha scenes, and all the battle scenes are epic, with every single piece of this feature choreographed to perfection. My only gripe is that some of the human animations seem to be a bit choppy. Here and there I notice certain movements, (which would be the hardest to produce using CG), have been cut, or are traded for more economical movements, and shots, or just look plain wooden. These are in the vast minority though, and often I can see where choices to economise certain shots pay huge dividends in other pieces where the additional detail, or the extra frames now available resulted in some of the most fluid, breathtakingly, beautiful animation I've ever witnessed.

Additionally, the features on the DVD are great! Time has been put into producing quality extras, which are second only to the main feature in watchability.

As an aside, I'd recommend to anyone who hasn't seen the original appleseed; watch that too!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 19 September 2005
quite simply, this film is a stunning visual feast. The use of 3d computer generated animation, coupled with a traditional anime shading on the characters, has produced a completely unique look to this film, quite unlike anything else on the animation scene, and i'd be surprised if more studios don't take a leaf out of Geneons book and make use of a similair technique. however, unlike a lot of reviews, i was actually impressed by the quality of the story telling in the film, as it remains fairly faithful to the original manga, which as a fan i was greatly impressed by. even the characterisation was more or less spot on, deunan and briareos as deadly warriors on the battlefield, but less sure when dealing with people outside of conflict, and athena as a leader trying to do what is right for two species of humanity, to name but a few.
and the action sequences, oh the action sequences! from a blistering fire fight in the opening minutes, the momentum builds from one sequence to the next, each doing something a little different each time, culminating in the spectacular running battle at the very end, where the gradual escalation of the equipment used reaches completely insane levels, as does the amount of firepower expended...
it is not however perfect. whilst the production is slick, the music superb (making use of acts from around the world, unusual for anime) and the action at times draining in its intensity, it does lag in places, espeacially in the few places where the plot relies on some quite fantastic coincidences to move events along. it might also have benefitted from a little more explanation of the backstory, espeacially in the subplot with deunan and hades.
these are small quibbles however, and despite this i still would recommend most fans of a) animation, b) intelligent action movies and c) those interested in the evolution of film technology to watch it at least once, and be amazed. i personally cannot wait to be able to watch this alongside Final Fantasy Advent Children, to witness the dawn of a new era in japanese animation..
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 28 April 2006
First of all, this movie looks stunning. The animation is near flawless to my eyes beautifully blending hand-drawn, motion capture, CGI and 3D images. The music was good but could have been better given the talent that worked on the film.

As for the story, even though the premise of a post-WWIII world isn't new, this film adds to the genre nicely with plenty of plot twists and intriguing back-stories.

Action scenes are nice, nothing too over-the-top gory but with enough impacts to keep the action-hungry viewer entertained.

Overall and excellent film which definitely requires a couple viewing to fully appreciate it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 27 April 2006
I'm not a Manga aficionado but I really Ghost In The Shell, Spirited Away, Akira and Princess Monoke. I thoroughly enjoyed Appleseed, as it's right up my street of futuristic weaponry and plenty of action.

I wasn't surprised to see that the creator of GITS had something to do with this film as that was the one film I would say it compares to. The animation is excellent and the soundtrack really fits the film. Definitely a film I'll watch a number of times.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 25 April 2006
I have just started to get into anime and this is one of the best films ive seen.The animation is 3d so its not just anime its like watching a cut scene from a video game.The action is great the characters are good and the story has depth a perfect action flick its kinda like the matrix meets metal gear meets final fantasy .So if you like anime get it
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 13 April 2009
I love to see beautiful visuals in anime films. While there may be some yearning for those classic days of all hand drawn animation, I have been really impressed by some of the films that have incorporated CG - such as Sky Blue.

Appleseed looks amazing, if you really appreciate visuals in anime I think you will love those in Appleseed. I also really like the mecha designs, the back drops and the combat sequences.

The plot is a bit derivative - it will not move you or make you think too hard, but it's a great action film and looks and sounds beautiful.

Now that a bit of careful shopping will net you a 2 disk special edition for about a fiver, there really is no excuse not to add this to your collection.

Recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 6 February 2009
When I bought this I was more than a bit skeptical of just how good it would be considering that I was sorely disappointed by the Manga video release of te first Appleseed animation.

My fears of the quality were, I'm pleased to say completely washed away inside of the first 5 minutes.

This is a truely stellar entry in the Appleseed saga as a stand alone story and I'm sure that Shirow-san would be most pleased with this.

I can honestly say that as a fan of the Appleseed universe I first encountered in the graphic novels that this CG movie really does have what it takes to match the graphic novel stories o the Appleseed world, now we just need Shirow to release more Appleseed comic book stories and I'll be even happier
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
Wow. I was amazed at the opening sequence of this film which outshines the brilliant opening of 'Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within' - the realistic kinetics of the human and 'mecha' characters is breathtaking. The 3-D computer generated animation is aided by motion capture and stylised with cell-shading to give it a clear association with previous anime such as 'Ghost in the Shell'. Sometimes the back drops are almost photo-real. This is real eye-candy stuff all the way through.

That's the hyperbole about the graphics over and done with, now I am going to have to try and justify why I gave this 5 stars and the 'Final Fanstay VII: Advent Children' only got 2! Well basically it's like this - I am a sucker for the work of Shirow Masamume whereas I think Squaresoft or whatever they call their film off-shoot are just trying to milk a franchise for all it's worth. If I was to compare the two films I'd say this film is not only visually far superior but it also has an interesting plot which isn't jut one big drawn out fight between the good guys and the bad guys. In fact at times it is really unclear who the good guys are and I enjoyed feeling unsure of how the story was going to turn out. The plot also makes you stop and think about the nature of humanity and what it means to be human in a very similar way the new series of 'Battlestar Galactica'.

It may not be true to the Manga but then this version of 'Appleseed' stands out in it's own right as an Anime milestone in terms of the excellent production and has had a clear influence on such films as 'Ultraviolet' and 'Natural City'. If you like kick-ass robot tanks and sci-fi kung-fu shenanigans you will love this film.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 5 January 2007
While the animation is impressive, overall I found this movie disappointing. This was probably because I read all of the manga before seeing the movie, and was hoping for something closer to that story or more like Ghost in the Shell: Standalone Complex.

Like Standalone Complex, Appleseed is based in the same world as the manga and propagates some of the same themes, but it loses much of the action, characters and character development and changes the story radically to make it fit the runtime (much like the Ghost in the Shell movie).

This movie shares a characteristic of many other anime that I find disagreeable (it's probably a cultural thing) - I find the music to be overdone and, in places, wildly inappropriate: I like to be able to hear what the characters are saying (even when they are speaking a different language and I'm reading the subtitles).

Despite all this, I would watch Appleseed again (and possibly even buy it), mostly for the opening scene.

If you haven't read the manga and like CG-heavy anime, then watch this movie, otherwise you may wish to approach it more cautiously.
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