Metropolis and Metropolis

A few weeks ago I was lucky to see the restored Metropolis (1927) with the new footage (or rather, original that had been lost for decades). This was my first time watching Metropolis, and I fell in love with the movie. The movie really did catch my attention, and held it better than most modern movies. I even cried when I thought Freder or  Maria were going to die during the end fight scene. But they didn’t. And no, that’s not a spoiler if the movie is older than everyone reading this. If you have not seen it, I urge you to do so. Netflix has the movie on instant watch (which you can stream into XBox or Wii), however that version is the shortened version. It’s not as clear, and the story is much different without the added scenes. Still, this movie is an exceptional film.

So naturally, I sought out the anime Metropolis. Based on the manga by God of Manga Osamu Tezuka, the movie has a similar core message, but it still hits the mark. What is truly impressive, is that Tezuka wrote his Metropolis based on stills he saw of the original Metropolis. The movie has the lower class (robots) rising against the upper class. There is a robotic girl based on a dead loved on, and there is heart, brain, and muscle in the film. There is also tons of homage to the Fritz Lang film. The original Machine Maria can be seen in the movie. When we meet this movie’s robot girl, she transforms much similar to Machine Maria. The other similarities are there: A cruel dictator, a son who is at odds, and again, a robot. But that’s it. This story is its own movie. It’s not a remake, not does it try to be.

This movie is also fantastic. You will feel empathy for some of the characters, and you will be engrossed by this film. However, this movie has the best animation I have seen in years. Fluid, colorful, stunning, and just beautiful. Cell animation and CG blend perfectly to create this amazing world of man and machine. The pacing is a little slow at times, but your eyes will not get bored. This movie doesn’t need sound, but it has it, so whatever. The music was odd. Jazz as opposed to sweeping orchestra music. Still, it worked.

Go see both. You’re life will thank me.

-Lauren

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