Appleseed Ex Machina Review

This month Appleseed Ex Machina (Appleseed 2), another masterpiece by Masamune Shirow, was released so I had to pick me up a copy. As the sequal to the great movie Appleseed the bar is set pretty high already, and it definately lived up to my expectations. The plot.
Deunan Knute, a young female warrior, and Briareos, a veteran cyborg-soldier, are both partners and lovers. As members of E.S.W.A.T., the elite special forces serving Olympus, they are deployed whenever trouble strikes. During a mission involving several high-ranking E.U. officials held hostage by a group of unknown and heavily-armed cyborgs, Briareos is injured protecting Deunan from an ensuing blast. As a last ditch effort by an injured cyborg, E.S.W.A.T. assigns Deunan a new partner, a bioroid named Tereus. Largely based on Briareos' DNA, Tereus was designed as a prototype for a new kind of fighter bioroid. His appearance is very similar to the way Briareos looked before he became a cyborg. Deunan is not agreeable to the idea of having a new partner, but eventually befriends him. (from Wikipedia)
Sounds like a mushy love story doesn't it? :) Good thing this plot gets dressed up with all the cybernetical action goodness you can expect from Masamune: Cyborgs, Bioroids, even humans (I always said cellphones were evil!) go out of control; taken over by a nutty scientist who is trying to make the world a better place. Movie Execution The movie itself is a captivating blend of visual goodness and clever action scenes. Rendering and effects are fantastic, and I get a good chuckle out of the action scene choreography which reminds me of the fresh new style that was introduced by The Matrix trilogy. BUT... East meets west? Where is the liquid red stuff? This is an anime, right? One of the reasons I enjoy watching anime is seeing the raw exaggerated fiction of the harshness of life... IT'S NOT THERE!!! (Okay, its there twice, without any of the exaggeration). It was there in the first movie. If it had not been I would not have cared, but this movie is so clean my 3 year old would ask to see it again! From the occasional abrupt cuts I would speculate it has been sanitized to introduce it to the American mainstream. - Is this another case of censorship, like what happened to Urotsukidōji? That American version was cut up so bad you lost about half the movie. - BAD Warner Video? BAD John Woo? (East meets East?!?) However, I have not been able to find any indications the original Japanese version would live up to this expectation. Please leave me a note if you know more about this. Conclusion Despite the lack of red splattering this movie is definately a must see, worth your time and money! The movie comes in single DVD format (HD-DVD/DVD combo - nice an cheap!, Blu-ray) and Two disk special edition (DVD format). If you have not seen the original Appleseed movie yet make sure you watch it first! Enjoy! - Doc.

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