If you love Anime, live it, breathe it, you may have seen or may have heard about Redline, a great movie released over 7 years ago, but is still making waves today. It is in my opinion one of the best Anime movies, ever...period.
The plot is simple. Redline is the most popular race in the Galaxy. Racer Sweet JP with a checkered past is racing in the Yellowline as the movie starts on the world Dorthy, a world of dog people of course! He nearly wins the race when a accident ( or was it) takes him out of the race and qualifying for the Redline race, his and every racers dream to compete in. While nursing his wounds and entertaining an old friend he finds out that the Redline race was announced to be taking place on Roboworld. A super militarized world that does not want the race on it and vows to stop it. A couple racing teams pull out because of the threats from the Roboworld leadership. Due to a extra slot and a fan vote, JP and another team slip into the race.
But is JP there for the race? For romance? or for something more, watch it and find out.
So why does a simple plot like this garner such a cult following that it does. The plot is simple enough, but this movie was made by animators that are fully aware of where animation is going, and what stereotypes they have garnered.
Lets take a step back. Animation has evolved a lot in the past 20 years. From quality Disney animation, to the cheap factory animation of the 70's and 80's, to bringing computer animation in the 90's and 00's. But has all this progress actually been progress?
The creators of Redline clearly said, meh! We are going to do this in the best way we know how, and to use our hands.
Still using computers, they hand drew the entire movie, scene by scene. It took 7 years to animated, some scenes took several months on their own. The avoided cheap computer tricks such as using them to animate motion and speech. Every syllable is drawn, every single one! Instead of 1 motion per frame, they have fully drawn out action scenes. They do not go cheap on the action or the detail of it. Yeah sure, since this is hand drawn, the occasional misshapen eye or head that appears, but that is hand drawn. But be sure JP's extreme ducktail rock-a-billy hair do is no mistake!
Another thing I noticed, is they are actually aware of how women are portrayed in their society when they made this movie. One of the main characters, Sonoshee, and a racer is as strong as any man. In one scene she even scolds our hero for being a coward. and in the end it is she and he that end up having to find a way to win, with each other. Equal footing baby!
They do even make fun of some other racers for acting too "cosplay". All this tells me is these creators and their team are also being progressive. They are aware of the stereo types there are, and what they are playing to, and or making fun of.
In the end, the attention to detail is absolutely stunning, it takes a couple viewings to catch it all. Animation, plot, characters. It is a must watch.
This is truly a movie that get more out of, the more you watch it.
It is available in English Dub, and Sub. If you do not know those terms, watch it anyways. In the end, if you find that asking yourself "What would Sweet JP do?" don't be too surprised. He knows how to roll with the punches.
In the end, this is just MY opinion, others may share it, others will have their favorites for their reason. Trust me, saying this is the best Anime movie ever, is not a troll, I just know that we all have our opinions, and I welcome those. Have fun!
But if I have convinced you to at least watch this movie, I have done my bit.
Take care and be at ease!