The animation is excellent. The plot...hard to say. If you've
read the books the you'll understand the first 40 minutes or so
and be confused by the rest of the movie. If you haven't read the
books then you'll simply think the plot is just a tad discontinuous.
Still, if it plays near you, I'd recommend seeing it.
As for its relevance to cyberpunk, I don't remember any direct
man-machine links or machines gaining intelligence. However,
Tensuo's (one of the main chars) transformation is induced
(I think) by a machine during an operation. Also, Akira is
imprisoned in a machine to keep him...uh...from being active.
Really, go see it.
communications design center
carnegie mellon u
I have seen the movie about ten times on videotape. While I've never
read the literature, I don't believe anything that happens to Tetsuo
has anything to do with cyberpunk. In fact, the movie has a lot more
to do with ESP gone mad than Cyberpunk.
If you're looking for Anime with an *almost* Cyberpunk theme, then I most
strongly suggest Black Magic Mario, and perhaps Bubblegum Crisis. However,
these too have little to do with man-machine interface and more with
"Can we build super-robots which look human and can destroy things in
really neat ways?" Bubblebum Crisis also involves people *inside* machines,
driving them like overgrown automobiles. Five Star Stories involves some
of this, too, but because the machines (Mortarheads) are too large and
complicated to be efficiently controlled by humans, scientists(?)
genetically engineer super-humans whose whole purpose in life is to
drive these mega-Robots.
Certainly Akira has the best animation and artwork of all the Anime
I've mentioned, and that alone makes it worth seeing, but I too have
serious doubts about what the plot is supposed to say. I have been told
by someone more knowledegable that the authors of Akira had the protests
and riots in South Korea on their mind when they wrote the story. If you
watch the movie over and over again you can indeed see some parallels.
I missed the movie when it was here, but not the 'manga'! B-)
'Manga' is the Japanese term for comic book. This may just be stating (or
restating) the obvious, but I'm sure it will provide enlightenment to someone
out there. ;-)
Joshua Bluestein jblue...@eagle.wesleyan.edu
Beauty is a French phoenetic corruption of a short cloth neck ornament
currently in resurgence. --Frank Zappa