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Metropolis

4.2 out of 5 stars 287 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Brace yourself for a totally new experience in cutting-edge animation. Based on the classic comic created by Osamu Tezuka (Astro Boy), written by Japanese anime legend Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira) and directed by Rintaro (Galaxy Express 999), Metropolis is a spectacular film featuring stunning imagery and unforgettable characters. In the industrial, tri-level world of Metropolis, Duke Red is a powerful leader with plans to unveil a highly advanced robot named Tima. But Duke Red's violent son Rock distrusts robots, and intends to find and destroy Tima. Lost in the confusing labyrinth beneath Metropolis, Tima is beginning a friendship with the young nephew of a Japanese detective. But when Duke Red separates the two innocents, Tima's life - and the fate of the universe - is dangerously at stake.

Additional Features

The 3 1/4-inch "pocket DVD" includes production drawings, two scenes in various stages of production, and a short biography of Osamu Tezuka, the "god of manga," who was instrumental in creating both the animation and manga industries in Japan. The interesting but often frustrating making-of featurette focuses on director Rintaro, screenwriter Katsuhiro Otomo, voice actors Yuka Imoto (Tima) and Kei Kobayashi (Kenichi), and composer Toshiyuki Honda. Curiously, Rintaro and Otomo agree that Tezuka would never have given them permission to film this early manga; Rintaro adds that he fears being haunted by Tezuka's ghost. Honda explains why he needed to create a memorable theme song for the film, but not why he used a New Orleans jazz idiom. Although they include brief remarks from the computer graphics crew, the documentarians neglect the artists who designed the dazzling art deco skyscrapers that dominate the title city--and the film. --Charles Solomon

Special Features

  • Two disc set including first ever "pocket DVD"
  • Animax Special: The Making of Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis
  • Exclusive Featurette: Interview with Rintaro Katsushiro
  • Two Animation Comparisons
  • History of the "Metropolis" Comic Book
  • Theatrical Trailers
  • Biography of Osamu Tezuka

Product Details

  • Directors: Rintaro
  • Producers: Haruyo Kanesaku, Osamu Tezuka
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Animated, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1), Japanese (DTS 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Georgian, Chinese, Thai
  • Dubbed: French, English
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    PLEASE NOTE:
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG-13
    Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: January 1, 2002
  • Run Time: 109 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (287 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005V4XG
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,279 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Metropolis" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Marc Ruby™ HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on February 23, 2003
Format: DVD
Between 1947 and 1949, Osamu Tezuka - who was to become the world's best-known anime producer - issued a small series of manga about a world of the future where industrialization, robots and humanity are all at odds. Sharp class differences also contribute to the tensions of a world largely in the hands of the power hungry. Now, 50 years later, Rintaro, another famous name in anime has decided to create an film from the original manga, sparing no effort or expense.
We find Metropolis in the throes of a celebration. Duke Red has completed the Ziggurat, an immensely tall building whose central tower conceals a solar weapon that will make the city the capital of the world, and Duke Red its ruler. The intricate politics of Metropolis are based on three tiers - the upper class, a vast and impoverished lower class, and beneath all else, the robots. There is great conflict over the role of the robots. Many fear them, and an anti-robot faction called the Marduks watch the streets, ready to destroy and automaton that acts out of line. Duke Red is the power behind the Marduks, but secretly he has hired Dr. Laughton, a criminal scientist, to build a super robot in the image of his daughter. This is Tima, whose destiny is to command the weapon hidden in the top of the Ziggurat.
Into this come Shinsaku Ban and his nephew Kenichi. Shinsaku is a detective, come from Japan to track down Dr. Laughton. As he is doing this, Duke Red's adopted son Rock, leader of the Marduks, is plotting to destroy Laughton's lab and Tima with it. The resulting conflagration catapults Kenichi and Tima into a wild race for life with Rock right behind them. On the way, we get to see much of Metropolis's underground, bringing home the social message.
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1 Comment 45 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Well, for once I will not cut corners around this review, this film must be watched by everyone. It could quite possibly be the most well-done anime of all time.
Now, to start off with the basics, "Metropolis" is a state-of-the-art anime that was based off of the old Osamu Tezuka ("The God of Manga", creator of "Astro Boy," "Kimba," and "Adolf" to name a few) comic from 1949. It's modern update was written by Katsuhiro Otomo ("Robot Carnival," and "Akira") and directed by Rintaro ("X:The Movie," and "Galaxy Express 999"). But you all know that after reading the shallow Amazon review from above.
The film's story has been brought up again and again, so I won't go into it that much. However, I will say this, the story is executed in a form in which I would call "Noir Disney." Don't worry, it's nothing bad, it's just saying that although the film looks like it takes a childish approach to things, it tends to be a bit more on the dark side. Thus, the film seems like a very interesting blend of two different genres. Besides, Otomo takes extreme cautions with the script, knowing that the material it's based on is nearly half a century old.
Characters are something to gleam over as well. Unlike "Akira," "Ghost in the Shell," or "Arcadia of my Youth" the characters have a full understanding of their emoitions. This can be credited not only to the superb animation, but also to the very talented JAPANESE (not English) voice cast. It is very easy to fall in love with all of these characters. From the robot, Pero, to the detective Shunsaku Ban, even to the enigmatic Rock of the Marduk. A rarity even in Disney movies.
The animation is the real star of the show.
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2 Comments 56 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Based on Manga by Osamu Tenzuka (the "Godfather" of anime responsible for the familiar doe-eyed look) and adapted to the screen by Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira), "Metropolis" only bears passing resemblance to the Fritz Lang film that obviously inspired it. While the animation is breathtaking and the story good, it never fully delves into the possibilities of the various philosophical problems it raises: artificial intelligence, surrender of freedom for security, and responsibility of outsiders to do the right thing. As a result, "Metropolis" ends up coming off as a really, really nice piece of fluff - one that, unfortunately, cannot compete with other `serious' anime titles like Princess Mononoke, Akira, or Grave of the Fireflies.
The story alternates between Kenichi, the son of a Japanese private eye sent to the gigantic future-city of Metropolis to find a doctor who is accused of making illegal human-robot hybrids, and Rock, a slightly off-kilter policeman who is head of the fascist-leaning goon squads that kill robots and revolutionaries with equal gusto. When Rock discovers that his adoptive father, a powerful Duke who plans on taking over Metropolis, has ordered the creation of a robot that resembles his dead daughter, he attempts to kill her, but she falls into the city's seedy robot/worker underworld where she meets Kenichi. He forms a bond with her, but her innocence is soon replaced as she realizes she was created for one purpose: the completion of a mysterious ziggurat that sits at the center of Metropolis. As the story moves towards its inevitable, Akira-esque conclusion, the revolutionary workers in the city attempt to gain control, although it becomes clear they are merely pawns of a larger force.
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