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Title Info

  • alias: Love City
  • type: movie
  • grade: watchable
  • Other elements of this title:
    • This title may offend the sensitive.
  • form: sub
  • made: unknown
  • Review created: Recently, but I didn't record the date.
  • mod: none

A strange old tape with a strange title. What was it going to turn out to be, perhaps a shoujo piece? some twisted shounen-ai? Nope, while it's called Love city this is a dark and violent show full of horror and psychic combat. The story takes place in a huge city during a single night (so no sun to interfere with the mood). It seems there's a developing battle between two headmeters (so called because, um, there's a digital readout on their foreheads) with immense psychic powers. One was the scientist (and leader of an immense organization) and the other the assistant who suddenly developed massive powers and went rogue. Caught in between these two is a `defective' headmeter (albeit with cybernetic implants) who has rescued a young girl from further experimentation. In truth his ties are a bit deeper, and his role that of a father. While they're allied with an older detective, and a psychic assassin who accidentally went rogue (but has since fallen for the detective) the enemies ranged against them are numerous and potent. Both sides are also vitally interested in the young girl, who seems to hold both power, which could decide their conflict, as well a clues to why this world is different from our own.

And so the stage is set for some action, gore and special effects in this twisted world. The characters aren't terribly deep (although there's some nice work from the minor characters) and there's not too much time for character development. Actually I must give acknowledgement that the rogue agent and the detective are much more fun than their roles actually require, and the quite spooky `tuned men' are likewise good. The plot itself is straight out of a bad B movie, with the essential core being on the dangers of biotechnology gone rampant...although some (well, a lot) of generosity is required to ignore some of the plot holes. The conclusion itself is weird but not too believable. Then again, at least it tries to tie it all together. So, given that there's definite problems in the story and character departments, why is this still watchable?

Well, the reason both is and isn't due to the animation. The first thing is that this movie looks very dated and pretty clunky. This is obvious in the visual style, the use of `paint' tricks to do special effects and even some `arty' bits which just look awful by today's standards. If you've got no tolerance for old animation you need go no further. Where it does win is that some of the action scenes are quite imaginative and nicely staged. The psychic powers giving rise to some very interesting scenes, some of which are suprisingly good. And suprisingly enough the animation for the physical action (as well as gore) is occasionally pretty good. Thus some of the acrobatic leaping, combat sequences and exploding corpses (don't irritate psychics), while reduced in effect due to their age, are still quite impressive. At some point in time there must actually have been some money behind this. So while this movie is no classic, and pretty ancient, it's still worth a watch. The voices were nothing special and the music (apart from a song break) was mostly spooky stuff to accentuate a scene rather than full background music.

Other Reviews

  • Anime Review review This excellent review is considerably more positive. While admitting that the style is dated the review considers the story to be impressive and strong, and the movie to hold together well. He also liked the `tuned' men, and draws an interesting parallel between them and the film `Dark City' (4/5).


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:14 WST 2009