We’re back, fully licensed and fueled up to have some more Anime Fun Time with our special guest Basil from the OSMCast. This time we’re talking about the 2009 anime film, Redline, directed by Takeshi Koike. Topics of discussion include this under-appreciated film as well as Tom’s staggering Ranma 1/2 addiction and Basil’s improbable fascination with shojo and sports anime. CLICK HERE or on the Youtube banner above to download our review of the film. While you’re at, you can watch Manga Entertainment’s official English dubbed version of the film here.
Let’s look at a few results of the “Screencap a Random Scene from Redline to Use as Your Computer Wallpaper” Challenge.
We didn’t talk enough about the Boin Sisters.
Princess Supergrass is best princess.
It’s a dog-eat-dog world.
I really need to check out this one when I can.
I liked Redline, though I never thought it was the “savior of anime,” as some people touted it to be. Then again, I don’t think any anime since Fullmetal Alchemist has quite hit the level that show did. Not even Attack on Titan, which I’m not going to say was overrated, but I found it to be a little too grimdark for my taste. Much like Game of Thrones; which I fully admit is an awesome show, but I think you’ve seen everything in its bag of tricks once you get past the first season.
Don’t want to go on too many tangents though, so I’ll just end by hoping for something that can hit the level of mainstream appeal and all-around awesomeness that FMA did. And soon too, it’s been ten years since that show came out, and anime’s kind of been working the backwaters for the past few years, in my opinion. It’s gotten a bit too “niche-y” again, and we need something to kick it out of its rut. Maybe something already has, and I’m just not paying enough attention. I liked “The Wind Rises” a lot, for what that’s worth.
Until listening to this, I never realized that the guy in JP’s flashback was the mafia guy holding Frisbee hostage. That is what makes this such an amazing movie, such an important detail was conveyed entirely through visuals and only those who actually look well can really notice it. I feel you guys should have spent a bit more time just talking about the music, like all the different racer’s theme songs. I know that isn’t how the gme usually roles, but with this movie it sure is deserving. As a single movie, few things are as fun and maniacal as this, I give it my full recommendation to everyone.
Every time the mafia guy is on-screen, there’s golden light reflecting off of his gold eyepatch, or gold tooth, or gold ring, etc…this is supposed to reference the flashback scene, which is awash with golden light.
Another clue that Machine Head is Sonoshee’s father is near the end of the race. It’s been a while since I last saw the film, so I can’t remember exactly how it goes, but he either challenges Sonoshee to use the Steamlight, or notices that she’s going to use it and acknowledges that, which ties in with the “given to me by my father” backstory.
I don’t think Redline is “surprise” Wacky Races in the least, as that should be plainly apparent once they introduce the racers and their vehicles. This is where you see that many are duos driving very specialized vehicles outfitted with extravagant and silly weaponry, such as missiles with cartoony faces drawn on them. That first happens about three minutes into the film.
I touched upon this in my Amazon review years ago (which is still listed as “most helpful”), but Redline’s lack of success is less a failure of the film itself than its distribution. Its intended audience hasn’t been able to find it easily. Sure, being free to watch on Youtube is a massive boon, but EVERYTHING is on Youtube. There’s no curation. The Akira/Vampire Hunter D/Ninja Scroll generation of the late 1980s/early 1990s found those titles because they were made available in outlets they were already using to pursue other media interests.
Redline doesn’t need to be on Crunchyroll, where the believers already frequent (and, as we’ve seen, reject it to some extent on account of it not resembling what’s current). It needs to be on Netflix and Hulu. It needs to be paired up in a recommendation algorithm so it comes up as part of “because you liked Fast and Furious/Mad Max” etc. It needs to play on the Cartoon Network, with the like, 5 seconds of female nudity trimmed out of it.
But none of that ever happened, and we thought it was a matter of time…except it’s been six years now. This is the real reason why Yoshiaki Kawajiri can’t get projects made, and his understudy Takeshi Koike had to leave Madhouse upon completion of this film: it’s the sort of production that a lot of people would love if only they saw it…but not the sort of production that people willing to spend $80 on single Blu-Ray discs tend to shell out money for.
It’s unfortunate. But at least we got this movie.