Appleseed: Ex Machina Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ November 4, 2007
Shinji Aramaki successfully follows up Appleseed, with Appleseed: Ex Machina.While seen as a continuation of its predecessor, it is possible to view this installment without having seen the first. The story is more or less standalone, but the buildup for the existing characters and futuristic setting is nearly non existent in this one. This is where Appleseed comes in to play.The 1 hour 40+ minutes is an appropriate time as this film delivers everything it needs to. The story is interesting and heavy on the science fiction, while the the Japanese voice work is a positive.The action seen throughout the picture has John Woo's signature all over it. Guns are a blazing and bullet casings are dropping all over the place. It is definitely fun to watch.Visually this film gets high praise. Japanese animation already looks good, but turn it into CG, render it to look like cel shading, and it all dazzles the eyes.Overall, Appleseed: Ex Machina has little in the way of disappointments and is a compliment to the Japanese animation genre.
Super Reviewer
½ March 7, 2009
The Appleseed saga continues as Deunan and cyborg sidekick Briareos are joined by a bioroid created from his genetic template and fight to prevent an evil scientist from taking control of the entire population with an insidious communications device. The first Appleseed film was a visual feast that perfectly captured the essence of the Manga it was based upon. The story here is rather predictable and derivative, involving the usual stereotypical mad scientist having megalomaniacal designs on the human race, but it was never really the plot that the original was all about. This sequel obviously concentrated on upgrading the visuals, and they are a lot slicker and more up to date than the originals; but that does not necessarily mean that they are "better". Everything has a glossy sheen on it that lacks the gritty, dark style that made it so good, and they manage to make it look more like a cut scene from a Final Fantasy game rather than less. The action sequences are far less intense and exciting as a result, and the simplistic characterisation means there is little in the way of emotional involvement. There's still some gorgeous images and fantastic manga-style production design, but as a whole it's another case of a franchise becoming a glossy shadow of its former self.
Super Reviewer
August 4, 2008
I prefer the story of Ex Machina to the 2004 Appleseed, but it does require you to have prior knowledge of the characters in order to enjoy and feel the emotional components of the story (which drive it more than mere plot incidents). You will still get the visual stun, but I don't know how well a new viewer can cope with the character details in Ex Machina as I saw both versions of the first Appleseed and was one of the anxious awaities when Ex Machina came out.

I was not at all disappointed. This is visually astonishing and the character development runs VERY deep if you have seen the '04 film. A must see for any scifi, action, or animation fans. This is the new standard for CG film. There are a few hiccups, but I'll need to rewatch before I can compile a list of complaints.
Super Reviewer
March 20, 2008
Incredible sci-fi anime pic that is once again unforgettable...thanks to the participation of John Woo. Pick this up only if you are a Sci Fi Anime fan.
Super Reviewer
January 14, 2009
Not as good as the first one, but still a decent enough action movie. I found the story and dialogue a little corny, and I wasn't impressed with the animation the second time round, having been blown away by the first one.
Super Reviewer
October 28, 2008
Wow! The computer technology for animation is very high tech in this amazing CGI movie. Pretty cool movie.
September 20, 2012
This is a good sequel to the huge succsess of the first film. In this one we have Deunan Newt and her lover Briareos continue to work for E-Swat and protect the human utopia of Olympus. In this one there seems to be terrorist activity affecting anyone who uses electronics or people who are cyborgs or have cybernetic parts in them. When these people start attacking other humans it becomes a huge issue. Things take a huge turn for the worst when Briareos gets infected by whatever is causing this. It will be up to Deunan Newt and Briareos to help stop this calamity before it destroys the entire world. Good action, good plot even though not as engaging as the first to me, and with a new CGI realistic animation style, this is a sequel worth seeing if you've seen the first movie. 9 out of 10.
April 6, 2008
A poor mans Ghost in the Shell. I know Appleseed is another manga from Shirow Masamune, but it's clear that John Woo's productive influence just tried to cram too much into one movie. Ghost in the Shell is so smart and fast and expects viewers to be able to keep up. What starts out as something simple enough and fun to watch quickly turns into clicied anime sci-fi for dummies. And an unbalanced voice cast drags the overly complex plot through the mud.
At least it looked kinda cool, I guess.
November 10, 2008
This was the best John Woo high animated 3g formated type of Anime I have ever seen & it was off the chain...U gotta see this it was great with all art work & detail.I want more...
October 26, 2008
Brillant! 10 times better than the first installment and that was awesome! The animation is better and the storyline is more complex. We get to see more of Deunan and Briareos's lives. This movie seems much more realistic than the first one all the way around. As usual the animation is beautiful and the fight scenes enticing. I hope there is a 3rd installment! I would recommend this to any Anime or action film fan!! It's a great watch.
July 17, 2008
Just stunning to look at, this film is the best argument I've come across thus far for owning the Blu-Ray player and hi def television.

The story is alright, but the visuals make it well worth a look.

July 17, 2008
Fast, imaginative and reliable anime hits close to the mark with gloriously executed CG mecha animation and insightful and diverse characters. The cumbersome and confusing plot with everyone somehow turning into zombies (huh?) adds meaningless weight to the film but the climax thankfully whets our appetite after a few, well executed and beautifully rendered action scenes. Recommended.
May 13, 2008
Anime kind of creeps me out, and the storyline was mildly creepy compared to, say, Akira, but I respect the artwork. Very fast paced scenes Wu worked with them on, and of course the guy who worked on the transformers and robotech cartoons made some amazing contributions as well.

I give it 3 stars because the action was so impressive along with the voiceovers.
April 25, 2008
Even better than the first one! The computer animation is absolutely amazing, and the characters don't even change from the last one (other than the quality of their art of course), and the action and mech fighting sequences are undoubtedly some of the best ones since Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children. Make sure you rent/buy the first one right along with this one for a kick ass mini-marathon!
March 17, 2008

Shinji Aramaki: "Okay, for this next scene, Deunan rides a grappling hook wire up a building and lands on the rooftop."

John Woo: "Excuse me, but...wouldn't it be better if Deunan shot some sorry n!&&@ on the way down?"

Shinji: "Hmm..."

Woo: "In slow-motion, of course."

Shinji: "Brilliant! Now... in the next scene, Deunan and Briareos are shooting some cyborgs..."

Woo: "...And they're back-to-back, right?"

Shinji: "Umm..."

Woo: "Then we show a slow-motion close-up of falling bullet casings?"

Shinji: "...Yes! Exactly right, Woo-san!"

Woo: "And then, in this one establishing shot of Olympus, we could have white doves..."

Shinji: "Uh-huh..."

Woo: "And then, for this next scene, instead of Triareos just shooting at the car, he should dive sideways-- in slow-motion of course-- shooting as he flies through the air."

Shinji: "..."

Woo: "Shinji, why don't you sit this one out?"
March 30, 2008
Best Appleseed movie yet. Visually a treat and a new spin on the love triangle. Very entertaining.
March 25, 2008
First off, I would just like to say that this movie was beautifully animated. The artists and developers really did an amazing job with the aesthetics. It's a shame all of that talent went into an over-the-top, John Woo action production. The film seems to have all the right ingredients necessary for an awesome movie experience; but the pieces just don't seem to fit together (especially if you watch the English dubbed version). I was very disappointed.
½ March 16, 2008
More action packed than the first one, but as a whole I prefer the first installment much more. Still very entertaining on its own, with kick ass fighting scenes and beautiful animation.
May 3, 2015
Fantastic film. A little corny jokes here and there.
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