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Genre: Sci-Fi Fantasy Animé Thriller (Japan)
Directed By: Kôji Morimoto (Segment 1 "Magnetic Rose"), Tensai Okamura (Segment 2 "Stink Bomb"), Katsuhiro Ôtomo (Segment 3 "Cannon Fodder")
Overview: Three short stories
In Animé, there is a certain amount of melodrama and exaggeration to be expected, depending of course on the seriousness of the tale. These three stories fell into each of the spectrums: silly, serious and middle of the road. These shorts were subtitled, as usual, so it's a little harder to gauge, but definitely nothing distracting, and it was never over the top.
As animation is done in controlled environments and the limits of the visuals of this kind of story lie solely in the imagination of the animators, you can usually figure that animation is a pretty good medium to score high in this category. Again with these three tales we find a mix of traditional and computer animation that could compete with all the rest. The scenes in Magnetic Rose were grand and panoramic, technically perfect, excellent zero Grav effects. In Stink Bomb, the tanks and planes and personnel really conveyed a sense of real attention to proper detail. Cannon Fodder's gritty style made the story perfectly oppressive, and the Cannon itself was as grand as it should have been.
They were all well written stories deserving of a good rating, though nothing stood out as being exceptional. Magnetic Rose was the story that stood out most of all in this category. The sense of confusion that was the Theme of this tale was intensified by the writing, most definitely.
Magnetic Rose had a fairly linear and predictable plot line, but the story was really well delivered, and believable. Very dramatic ending. Stink Bomb had too much suspension of disbelief, but once you went ahead and accepted the premise, everything fell into place really well, great ending. Cannon Fodder was less about plot and more a slice of life character study, so nothing really tosay about that. Unfortunately, I didn't sense any sort of connection tying the three stories together. I think they took the title Memories from one of the themes of Magnetic Rose, then gave up when there were no other parallels in the other stories to keep the title appropriate to each tale.
If you can't convey proper mood in Animé, what makes you think you could pull it off anywhere else? Magnetic Rose conveyed the elements required beautifully. The over the top ridiculousness of Stink Bomb took the story on a humourous twist you wouldn't normally expect with this kind of tale. Cannon Fodder was drawn in a less traditional style, more gritty, more 1984, more 1927's Metropolis. It was very a propos for the story being told. Excellent mood throughout.
Overall Rating: 78% (Well Done!)
Well I liked it a lot. It won't stay in my mind as a great movie that everyone should see, but if it's on, don't look away, by any means. None of the stories stood out as being tremendous or anything, but it was a film of superior quality.