Monday, March 10, 2014


I was reading DVD reviews in some obscure film magazine last month, and I stumbled on an animated feature called "Metropia", from Sweden.  I liked the dark semi-realistic visuals of the still image, so I got the film from Netflix.  What a unique and amazing film!  It's a sci-fi film set in a dystopian 2025 Europe. 

Roger, a mid-level bureaucrat, decides to track down these voices in his head, only to discover a nefarious conspiracy, spread through a giant transportation system and shampoo. 

The characters in the film are voiced by Vincent Gallo, Juliette Lewis and Udo Kier, and it's directed by music-video veteran Tarik Saleh.

But what interested me most was the look and style of the film.  It's a digital film with very minimal movement.  The lip-sync is the only real movement - except for an occasional eye-blink.  And the walking is your typical Japanese anim√© stiff-leg walk. 

In fact, the whole film is very stiff and limited, yet I was seduced by the backgrounds, lighting and story.  Of particular interest were the faces - they used real actors as models, and the resulting imagery was quite powerful. 

I wish this film had enjoyed a bigger release - it's really a fascinating feature film.  But thanks to DVD, it's hopefully finding its audience.

I give "Metropia" a "B".

Bill Plympton

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