Japan, 2077: Japan has become a renegade nation
closed to the rest of the world. Shielded from penetration
by air, sea and space for 10 years, the island nation has
become a dangerous mystery to the United Nations. The country's
isolation resulted when it fell out with other countries over
the development of robotics and its determination to continue
creating them even when they were banned everywhere else.
The fear is that it has now taken its creation of human androids
to extreme and the only way to find answers is to send in
a crack team of fighters to hook up with Japanese underground
rebels and find out what's going on. Enter Vexille, a female
special agent, whose squad uses ultra-high-tech uniforms,
weapons and vehicles to rocket into battle.
In terms of advancing technology, Japan is still one of the
undisputed pioneers. Take for example, the recent hi-def format
war between Toshiba and Sony that shake up the media world
and you get a vague picture of what “Vexille”
is trying to hint.
in the year 2077 (hence the title), Japan has been cut off
from the rest of the civilization world after withdrawing
from the U.N. as a result of a disagreement over a biotechnology
experiment. Shrouded in high security and secrecy, we learnt
that the country is now being controlled by an evil heavy
industries empire called Daiwa. An LA based special-ops, S.W.O.R.D
is thus assigned by the U.S. government to infiltrate the
country to find out more about it’s creation of human
you have watched “Ghost in the Shell”, “Appleseed”
or dozens of other Japanese anime, you won’t be holding
your breath for “Vexille”. Yes, there are the
usual cool androids, heavy machinery and over-the-top weaponry
and vehicles gracing the screen. Even the futuristic environment
of LA is a marvel to the eyes. The animation technique which
combines the use of 2D and 3D elements called 3DLIVEanimation
is simply stunning. You could feel the realism of the explosions
too. Even the rendering of the human characters I should say
look more alive than ever. When it comes to animation, Japan
has proven to the world they are again the undisputed (see
I used the word for the second time) King.
is the writer and also the director of “Appleseed”
and “Vexille”, Fumihiko Sori has little to convey
in the 109 minutes running time. Sori stressed he is trying
to put across the importance of ‘communication’
during the making of feature in “Vexille”. But
seriously pardon my ignorance, I don’t see that coming.
Droids controlling the world? Apocalypse? A lot of been there
a pity “Vexille” started pretty well but fumbled
towards the end. The roles of Vexille (the female agent of
SWORD) and the rebel, Maria respectively could have expanded
a little. However, you can’t really fault Sori for that
since it’s a stand-alone feature.
an accompanied exhilarating techno score by UK based DJ Paul
Oakenfold, “Vexille” has some fun action sequences
to satisfy your visual craving. Unfortunately, if you are
looking for something deeper, “Vexille” just isn’t
the cup of tea for you.
This Code 3 DVD comes with trailers, photo gallery and (to
this reviewer’s surprise) a making of feature which
detailed director Fumihiko Sori’s journey of making
“Vexille”. Running almost an hour, it’s
quite refreshing to listen to a director’s thoughts
and his interaction with the various voice actors and actresses
and also a highlight on the Tokyo international anime festival.
visual here is faultless. Colors are rich and no visible artifacts
are noticed. It’s a brilliant transfer all round. Audio
is only available in Dolby Digital 2.0 which is quite a pity
consider there are some intensive sequences which would sound
more fantastic in 5.1 surround.
Review by Linus Tee