Friday, November 30, 2012

ANI-MOVIES, *Armitage III: Poly-Matrix

Coming out a year before the Ghost In The Shell movie, this was one of the quintessential cyberpunk anime movies. Originally, Armitage III(not the "third" in a series, BTW)was a 4-episode OVA which blended Total Recall and Blade Runner. It was later put into this compliation movie, Poly-Matrix, which was redubbed with Elizabeth Berkley and Kiefer Sutherland cast as the main characters.

Taking place in the mid-21st Century, mankind has begun populating Mars. Ross Syllibus is a cop from Earth who transfers to the Martian police, but on the flight in, a female country singer is killed. The scantily-clad policewoman, Naomi Armitage, trails the killers in the terminal and abruptly meets Ross, although the main killer, Rene D'anclaude, escapes. The singer is revealed to actually be an android, first confused with one of the types called the "seconds", but she is really a "third" which is a female android totally identical to humans, and capable of giving birth. Armitage and Ross are assigned with bringing in D'anclaude. They track him down, however, Armitage is shown for being a third herself, and goes missing after D'anclaude arrest. More thirds keep getting killed, so Ross continues to search for their killer, and comes across Armitage along with a supposed male third. Another D'anclaude then attacks them, who it turns out is a second. Armitage and Ross then raid a hospital the original D'anclaude is in, and discover the creator of the thirds(and Armitage's father), Dr. Asakura, is lying in a compound in the Martian desert. They find him there along with a reprogrammed D'anclaude second. While there, Armitage and Ross admit their true feelings for each other, only to have to take on the Earth army the next day who bomb the compound. The two of them survive, and Armitage somehow realizes that she's now pregnant.

This compilation movie wasn't bad, as compared to some other ones like the Mobile Suit Gundam trilogy, and Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz. However, its a step above some of the shameless "movies" that were released in America that were actually just OVA episodes strung together in a single movie like Sonic The Hedgehog or Tekken. The original Armitage III OVA series is probably a better representation of the anime than Poly-Matrix, not to mention the dub is better too. It has the same voice actors in each one, aside from Berkley performing flatly as Armitage, and Sutherland as Syllibus sounding like he didn't really care about what he was doing. As a movie, there were some scenes left out from the OVA for time, even though there was an original opening and closing to it. You'll getta better feel for the series over the film though. It's also worth checking out the sequal movie, Armitage III: Dual-Matrix which was a fair conclusion to it.

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