Posted in Art & Animation, Fantasia 2011, Fantasia International Film Festival, Film Festivals, Reviews, Trailers, Video

Fantasia 2011: Review of Redline

redlineRedline (2009)
Director: Takeshi Koike, Screenplay: Katsuhito Ishii, Yoji Enokido, Yoshiki Sakurai
Cast: Takuya Kimura, Yu Aoi, Tadanobu Asano

The visuals and animation are absolutely beautiful in Redline and that is reason enough to watch this movie.  It’s set in a futuristic world populated with all sorts of fantastic looking aliens who bet on races where anything and everything goes.  That means the competitors can either drive faster, shoot down opponents or take shortcuts.  It doesn’t matter how they do it because all that matters is finishing first.  For the racers involved, the goal is to qualify and compete in the Redline race.  However, this edition of the race is all the more dangerous because it takes place on the militaristic planet called Roboworld whose leaders are none to pleased, vowing to destroy all the racers before they even start their engines.

Redline is as expected a high-octane ride and goes totally bat-shit insane during its racing sequences.  I can’t imagine any other work being able to come close to the craziness of the racing in this movie.  The visuals are vivid, colourful and at times very shiny.  When the Roboworld military starts their all-out assault on the racers it gets totally ridiculous and you pretty much have no idea what’s going on.

That is a weakness of the movie, it gets hard keeping track of all the racers and where they are relative to each other.  In general it’s hard to sort out all the ancillary events outside of the race itself and I have a feeling that some plot points and characters simply aren’t explained enough.  Also don’t expect much characterization either except for the main human characters.  This is too bad since the other alien racers are quite intriguing.  They have grudges against each other that play out during the race but have little to no set up.  Still you probably won’t even realize any of this because the racing is just so awesome.  Your visual and aural senses will be completely overwhelmed.

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Author:

Longtime fan of East Asian films. Former "movie reporter" on the music radio show / podcast "Beats From The East" broadcasted on Concordia University's CJLO 1690AM radio station in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

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