As you may have guessed by some of my previous reviews I am a fan of animated entertainment. I don’t think I qualify as any kind of expert on the subject, I certainly don’t like to think of myself as an overenthuasitc basement dwelling fan or even, dare I say, a Weaboo. I suppose you could say that I skim the surface.
Occasionally I listen to a podcast called The Greatest Movie Ever. On a recent episode of a “spinoff” cast of that show, I can’t remember which one the hosts talked affectionately about a movie called Redline. I had never heard of it before, but the way these guys wouldn’t shut up about it convinced me to have a look for it.
I’m glad I did. If there is anything that I don’t like about this movie it is that I hadn’t heard of it sooner, and what it represents. We will get back to that in a moment, first, the good stuff!
Redline is set in a fictional universe that I really like. I could easily see this movie being set in my own, Worlds Set Free universe, just a few hundred years later in history. The environment clashes the forces of anarchy against the forces of order in the most direct, clean, balls to the wall insane fashion possible. This is about as far from a Star Trek style, clean, crystal spires and togas, socialist utopia as you can get and still have it be science fiction.
The soundtrack, I really like a good soundtrack, this might be the best soundtrack I have ever heard in terms of number of songs I really want to hear over and over again. I mean listen to this.
And I don’t even like this kind of music.
Even the short songs are awesome.
Do not listen to this while driving.
The plot and writing is decent. The main plot line is utterly insane, yet it works, at least for me. It’s one of those movies that made more sense after watching and pondering on the characters motivations. Not too many movies have that effect on me. Usually the longer I think about them the more plot holes and nonsense spike up. That said, you do get a slightly different story in the dubbed and subtitled versions. The English subtitles and Japanese voices do make a bit more sense. However since this is a movie that is all about the visuals an argument can certainly be made for favoring the dub. Repeated viewings are highly recommended, especially under the effect of substances that increase the human minds ability to appreciate detail and react to new information. Speaking of visuals…
The character design is spectacular, the level of detail, even in the smallest elements that is just absurd. When you know how difficult and expensive animation can be you realize that this movie is something akin to a Bugatti Veryon. An absolutely insane amount of work went into this movie, which brings me to what I didn’t like about Redline.
It is an unfortunate rule of development that the ultimate form of a technology or craft is realized just as it becomes obsolete. Redline reflects this in spades, starting with the fact that the cars in the movie are all propelled by “retro” style engines. Piston and gas turbines as opposed to antigravity drives. More than that is the fact that Redline is one of the last entirely hand drawn animated movies ever made. That upsets me quite a bit, especially considering that Redline was a financial flop.
Which becomes all the more absurd to me when you consider the success of the Fast and Furious franchise by comparison. Redline has better characters, visuals and, as weird as this may sound. A more realistic plot than any of those films. So in short, get over to Amazon and get yourself a copy of this film. If you can keep up with the frenetic action I think you will enjoy it.