Around the West Midlands, it’s rare to find anime film screening in cinemas (unless it’s the next Studio Ghibli film) but thanks to the people at We Love Anime and the folks who have organized the Flatpack Festival, I got the chance to see Redline at The Electric Cinema in Birmingham.
This was the first time going to see an anime film on the big screen, so the amount of excitement that went through me was immense. I also invited one of my friends, who is a newcomer to Japanese animation to experience this film.
As I made my way inside the theatre room, I found the audience very varied in both age and gender which was great to see, another great sign is that the room was almost full; there were a lot of keen moviegoers inside with huge interest.
At the start I knew nothing about Redline; all I knew is that it was a take on racing genre, which hasn’t really been touched in anime unless I mention the “Initial D” series or to go really old school “Speed Racer”, Madhouse studios who have created such magnificent films such as “The Girl Who Leapt Through Time” and “Metropolis”, when their name came up I knew I was going to watch something amazing.
My initial thoughts reminded me of a certain scene from the popular franchise Star Wars, the pod-racing on Phantom Menace was fast and quite exciting the first time I watched it when I was a young teenager. What Redline does is takes that concept and puts it on steroids and adds a bit of Wacky Races in there as well.
The film takes place in a futuristic setting were advanced racing vehicles take part in tournaments. It’s a popular sport all across the galaxy, which brings in many alien racing fans. They do this to try and advance into the biggest racing tournament Redline.
The races were phenomenal throughout, showing amazing creativity and colour that really shone through, when the nitro boosts start, the animators did very to show how characters would react to these massive speeds. The animation of the worlds shown and the many alien cultures brings the movie a lot of life into it and watching it all in high definition was a big treat.
Are main character known as JP is a likeable character who wants to do his best to win but its not all about him, the film does well to at least give the basic character development to other racers, all showing there unique features and vehicles. One character flashback reminded me of the career progression to Formula One, where racers would have to win Go-kart races.
The film was unique, adrenaline pumping and most importantly fun. I will need to watch this again purely because I might of missed some animation and seeing it in the cinema with that loud bass soundtrack was worth every single penny. I fully recommend seeing it in the cinema if you ever get the chance but if not; MangaUK will be releasing Redline on both DVD and Blu-Ray on 6th September 2011.
I want to thank again We Love Anime (http://www.we-loveanime.com/) and the Flatpack festival (http://www.flatpackfestival.org/home/) for making this possible.