This Swedish adult (not the type just coming to your mind) animated science-fiction movie is directed by Tarik Saleh. The interesting but very simplistic screenplay was written by Fredrik Edin, Stig Larsson, and Tarik Saleh after a story by Tarik Saleh, Fredrik Edin and Martin Hultman. I loved the animation technique which uses actual photographs been altered and heavily stylized in a computer program, to finally be animated. The visual style is inspired by the works of Terry Gilliam, Roy Andersson and Yuriy Norshteyn but it kept its originality.
I will say that Orwellian element are obvious in the story about terrifying Europe where the world is running out of oil, and a private underground network is created by joining all the various undergrounds together underneath Europe. The main character is Roger (Vincent Gallo) from Stockholm and he avoids the underground because he finds it disturbing. He uses a banned bicycle for transportation but soon things are starting to happen and he has no option but to use the underground. His problem is that sometimes when he is too near the transport network, he hears a strange voice in his head...
I liked the idea that ordinary people spotted on the streets were used as models for the characters. The main character Roger is based on a chef who worked at a restaurant in Stockholm where the Atmo (the developers of the story) employees were regulars, and Nina was found in a make-up store. Vincent Gallo accepted his part as the lead voice actor after having seen 30 seconds of finished animation as well as hearing that German actor Udo Kier, of whom Gallo was a fan, already was attached to the project.
As a movie I enjoyed it, even with the lack of effective narration, mainly because of the dark toned photography with a unique look and excellent collage of music, animation and suspense. Metropia has been awarded the prestigious "Future Film Festival Digital Award 2009" at the 66th Venice International Film Festival, recognized as "In perfect harmony with the story". I hope you'll have a chance to enjoy it.