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Astro Boy – Review October 29, 2009

Posted by Cello in Domestic Film Reviews.
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astroboy

The original cartoon of Astro Boy was first seen on Japan television from 1963 to 1966 as which is credited as the first anime cartoon. The character of Astro Boy first appeared in print as a manga in 1952 so naturally this film has plenty of Japan influence in it.  The story is similar to that of Pinocchio as a robot with incredible powers, and the purest spirit on the planet discovers the joys of being human while embarking on a worldwide journey to discover his true potential. As I try to do with most films, I only had a general idea of Astro Boy’s premise before walking into the theater.

So what did I think? Well…Astro Boy sucked pretty bad.  The film is actually marketed towards kids oddly enough which is strange since the negatives far outweight the positives in this movie. Very violent including (but not limited to) the death of a man’s son, attempted murder, and suicidal behavior.  The animation was smooth, capturing the tone I remember while using completely different techniques by switching to CGI. The CGI was a good fit for this future world. The voice-acting is decent, but it’s hard to say it’s good because there’s nothing that stands out. If I didn’t see his name in the credits, I wouldn’t even know Samuel L. Jackson was in the film.

astroboy2

I know this film tries to tackle certain important issues but I don’t care enough about this film to dive into them. Simply stated, underneath it all is a strong story of a boy who is just trying to fit in. Overall Astro Boy proved itself to be an entertaining film, one that shows an appreciative dedication to the source material despite its more mainstream requirements. But it almost feels like there are too many movies competing simultaneously in what is essentially a pretty standard tale of good versus evil.

The second half of Astro Boy just dies. And the characters Astro Boy runs into really do nothing to move the story along. I would highly recommend families to see this movie. It’s kid friendly with great animation and most importantly it’s fun! As to everyone else, pass on this movie. While it doesn’t live up to Pixar standards, the movie is quite an engaging family-friendly action flick. As a film, Astro Boy is quite simple and doesn’t offer much innovation to its animated-action genre.
astrating

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Comments»

1. Squire Starsquid - November 3, 2009

Though I haven’t seen it yet, I really think they’ve raped this one, just like they raped the Ponyo theme song for the American version. I don’t know, it lost its charm and looks like a bad Dreamworks animation as apposed to a superior Pixar production. I don’t think I’m even gonna bother watching this one hehe.

Cello - November 3, 2009

Indeed, with the legacy of Astro Boy, it deserved so much better. It’s a shame really…

2. Heather - November 3, 2009

I’m glad for this review. It doesn’t just sound like a bad adaptation, but bad period. My oldest son has been trying to convince me to take him to see it, and I keep hinting at some other movies, but I feel obliged because he’s sat through Star Trek and Wolverine with me. (though he liked both) I’ll continue steering him elsewhere after reading this. LOL.

3. hagiblog - November 3, 2009

We just watched this one around here and the kids thought it was awesome. I thought it was lacking and even the action was pretty limited. I guess it looks pretty, that’s good for something isn’t it!

4. bluedrakon - November 9, 2009

I agree with this post. It is a great Family film, but leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. My son loved it – though he covered his ears as it was very loud at times.
They did try to hard to have an adult theme (who am I and where do I fit in society) for a kids film and it overtook the story too much.


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