The Hated Opinionated One

Posts Tagged ‘Action’

Appleseed Grows Creative Trees

Posted by Scotio on April 30, 2008

Appleseed is one of the most amazing pieces of Japanese animation in modern years. Sure, there was a sequel, and even the stunning films Vexille and Karas, that followed after this film. But, that’s just the point, it followed after ApSe. Much like it’s “Sister” film, Ghost In The Machine, ApSe totally blazed a trail in the action department of Anime. With an opening segment that drops jaws and soil draws, it’s hard to feel like you’re not in for the ride of your life. I mean, yeah, sure, the storyline isn’t on the scale of Akira or a charming film by Hayao Miyazaki, but the action + soundtrack easily makes up for that. They didn’t just rely on drawing out the sequences then digitally mapping them with a 3D render. No, not for this film. They went ahead and used motion capture technology to have it as life-like as Sci-Fi Fantasy animation would allow.

Here’s a quick rundown on the story:

There’s this badass legend-in-the-making special forces chick named Deunan Knute who gets rescued and then “captured” to help run things over at Olympus, which is a virtual metropolis utopia created after the Third World War in 2131. Olympus is 50% Bioroids, which is basically extremely human-esque androids. The Bio’s are peaceful and passive. Humans, not so much. Deunan’s ex-lover/ex-squad leader, Briareos Hecatonchires, is now like a super Robocop type dude who also works on the military side of Olympus. Some “outsiders” come to bring bullets and explosions to Olympus, and stuff just goes down the traditional road from there.

I’m not going to sit here and type out the whole synopsis of the film. Why? Because I know some of you folks still haven’t seen this marvelous flick. To that, I say SHAME ON YOU! And I urge you to go and check it out IMMEDIATELY . . . or as my Spanish speaking friends would say “RAPIDO, MUCHACHO!” Oh, did I mention that it has a devastatingly good soundtrack? I did? Well . . . allow me to dwell on that for a moment, shall you? Good.

The soundtrack features work from various Big and Small names in the electronic music department. From All-Across the board Electronic Japanese duo Boom Boom Satellites to the world-renowned dance music master Paul Oakenfold, the soundtrack just trumps. Even the musical score by Tetsuya Takahashi is stunning and soul stirring. The deluxe version of the bloody thing houses both the Score and the songs featured in the film. If anything, opt for that one, folks.

Though it wasn’t the first in its field to be created, it was definitely one of the best. Some can argue that Advent Children was better. To which I couldn’t argue there. But, the fact remains, ApSe was released first. So, AHA! Not to mention the designs were completely different, but that’s just too obvious to point out, isn’t it? Still, ApSe allowed folks to look deeper into what was created here, and, then, go forth and multiply on top of that. The last hallmarking Japanese Animation movie to do that was, again, it’s “sister” film Ghost In The Machine which inspired the monumental feature film franchise The Matrix. So, don’t be surprised if you see something live-action that, somehow, reminds your action taste buds of a little old seed from an Apple.


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MacFarlane’s Still Unspawned Sequel

Posted by Scotio on April 22, 2008

There are constant mixed emotions regarding the film adaptation of the hit/cult comic series Spawn by Todd MacFarlane. Since being one of the artists for Marvel Comic’s flagship line, Spiderman, Mac went off and did his own thing. Creating a gritty, foul-mouthed, and demented comic that took all the more aggressive comic fans by storm. Yeah, I just mentioned it, it’s Spawn. I, myself, was only a moderate fan of the comic, but the ones I did read . . . brilliant. I guess I can attribute the fact that I was stuck in the middle of nowhere for my high school years, which was the same time that the comic came out, resulting in me not being able to properly collect those little dirty hellfired gems.

Anywho, back to the main topic, the movie. The movie was both a hit & miss amongst many(Mac included). It was a hit to have a leading black Superhero(Anti-Superhero, to be exact) blasted across the cinema with powers that would drive even the nerdest of men into raving blood-crazed maniacs. Most critics panned it as a misstep in Superhero movies. Plus, it didn’t help that Blade came right after it and made most forget all about the film for a few years. So, the sequel stayed in development hell for quite some time. It wasn’t until HBO started pushing the animated series that revived the thirst for on-screen Spawn carnage. So, Mac said that there will be another, and it will be better suited to the series.

It’s 2008, and yet again, they are talking about the movie should come out this year. Almost every year since 2001, they’ve been saying that the movie will be released, eagering rehashed fans of the franchised only to be let down year after year. It’s disappointing, because not only has the movie became a cult-classic, the soundtrack has become an animal of its own right. It spawned 2 hit singles. The entire soundtrack was intelligently created. It mixed Alternative/Metal artists with Electronic geniuses. In fact, no one has been able to successfully emulate the formula that was used(the sequel of the movie that overshadowed the film, Blade II, to unsuccessful results, and even previously, Judgement Night, somewhat did the same but not as strong).  So, the pressure isn’t just to see if they are able to make the film truer to the franchise, but if they are able to make the soundtrack even more groundbreaking than the first.

Again, I state, it’s 2008, and the movie is again said to be on its way to cinemas, or even home entertainment systems. The topic behind the film’s plot has, too, changed multiple times over the years. From it being a direct sequel to the first, to it being based around Sam & Twitch with Spawn making cameo appearances, to it being unrelated to the first film and truer to the franchise. Still, we’ve seen no screen shots. No production shots. No facts of who the writer(s) is going to be. No concrete director. Nothing. But, we still have hope. And, hopefully, the movie(and its soundtrack) can finally be delivered this year with satisfactory results.

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