Synonyms: Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis, Robotic Angel
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: May 26, 2001
Duration: 1 hr. 49 min.
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 7.601 (scored by 13990 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular Tagsaction adventure drama sci-fi
Jul 16, 2007
The character development in Metropolis was appealing. The characters brought the movie alive; they are all one of a kind. Each of them had their own unique looks, styles, and distinctive personalities.
Metropolis is best known for its beautiful CGI; complete eye candy. The character animation didn’t blend in that well with the other CGI structures, but the strange daring mixture pulled me more into the movie.
I’ve seen Metropolis only in English dialogue, which I thought was great. Each of the voice actors portrayed the characters very well. The soundtrack to Metropolis was amazing. I really loved the music through out the movie, especially the ending song.
I would recommend watching Metropolis; it is a true delight.
Jun 18, 2009
This film is adaptation of one of Mr. Tezuaka’s earlier sci-fi work (before Astro Boy) Metropolis. There are some great interviews with the director talking about Mr. Tezuaka on the feature disc.
The music for this movie is awesome, does a good job of setting the mood, while also being diverse and enjoyable. One of my favorite songs is the opening music; it’s this great New Orleans jazz with leading saxophone.
The story is well pasted and has some social commentary with the use of robots.
Great movie guys, go buy this one. Has tons of great extra features.
Jun 25, 2012
The movie takes place in bustling, multi-leveled city of Metropolis, populated by an abundance of people and robots. A celebration is taking place for the building of the of the Ziggurat, a giant tower representing the height of technology. However, not everyone is celebrating, as the working class of the city find themselves in a depressed and frustrated state; blaming robots for taking their jobs and resenting the upper class that reaps the rewards of advancement as they struggle. In this volatile atmosphere Japanese detective and his nephew, Kenichi, arrive in the city in search for a wanted mad scientist. Their search eventually leads to Kenichi meeting Tima, a humanoid robot made at the behest of Duke Red, one of the most powerful men in Metropolis. The two are soon after pursued by Duke Red's violent adoptive son, Rock, who wants to destroy Tima. The tension in the city is about to come to a head, and Tima and Kenichi are right in the middle of it all.
Metropolis plays out equal parts sci-fi epic and suspense thriller. The futuristic city of Metropolis is the ideal setting for the theme of the relationship between humans and and robots. On the human's side of things, they treat robots with either indifference or aggression. For those in power like Duke Red, robots are nothing more than tools to serve their purposes; things to be disposed of when they no longer can perform their tasks. Others like Rock and the working class rebels take violent action. The rebels feeling that the increase of robot labor has displaced them as I mentioned earlier in my plot summery. Rock show a general dislike for robots and ruthlessness to anyone who gets in his way robot and human alike; however he has a particular resentment for Tima, angered that a robot has a higher place in his adoptive father's eyes than himself. The robots follow their assigned roles accordingly, however they also seem to be more sentient than humans treat them. This is most evident in Tima, who is so human-like that the fact she is a robot doesn't occur to Kenichi or herself; but also in the other robots in the movie, especially the robot detective that assists Kenichi and his uncle.
On the technical side of things, Metropolis is a well textured creation. One thing that makes it look striking is Tezuka's character designs. They are in the same roundish style as Tezuka's iconic Astroboy, giving them a kind of classic look; they come to life beautifully in the fluid animation of a feature film. The city of Metropolis is quite a sight, filled with intricately designed buildings, fantastical future tech, and enormous crowds of people and robots. The city is just stunning in detail and filled with color, at times it feels a bit too excessive and looks gaudy, but perhaps that is the point. The grandeur fits the rich part of the city nicely, but it is a bit jarring that the more depressed areas that are underground are almost equally as colorful. Ultimately, this is just nitpicking on my part however, because the movie looks gorgeous overall. The music is New Orleans style jazz, making the whole movie feel a bit like a Mardi Gras celebration, which fits the often over-stylized visuals perfectly.
The big stumbling point of the movie is its characters. Honestly, it was kind of hard to find a character I could connect or relate to, because all of them seemed to be devises to either move the plot along or make a point. Kenichi is really just another one of those kind, naive young boy characters that just embody purity; while that isn't a bad thing on its own, he never develops into anything more, which makes him pretty uninteresting. Tima's development raises some very interesting ideas about what might happen as technology becomes more advanced, but as she is just developing a personality throughout the movie, it is hard to find anything to attach to in her. Likewise, Duke Red is interesting, especially regarding his relationship with Tima and Rock, but isn't given enough screen time to fully develop. This isn't to say that they are bad characters, they are just lacking the spark which would have made them great characters. Rock is probably the most interesting as the vicious antagonist, driven by a superiority complex and jealousy of Tima.
The story also slouches near the end, turning into the doomsday scenario you probably saw coming. It is not that big a problem, as the climax is a fantastic visual spectacle with some impressive scenes of mass destruction, and the movie wraps up pretty well. However, it does come across as somewhat uninspired, and to an extent rushed.
Although not without some pretty big flaws, Metropolis is a well spent hour and fifty minutes. There are some really good high-concept themes that provide nice food for thought. On top of that, the visuals are nothing short of spectacular. If nothing else, Metropolis works as a thoughtful piece of eye candy entertainment.
Nov 30, 2009
And like it they do. As of this writing, the movie has 60 critical review on Rottentomatoes.com, with a 91% approval rating. Roger Ebert gave it four out of four stars, and called it "One of the best animated films I have ever seen".
For all this acclaim, the movie nearly didn't get made at all. Osamu Tezuka felt that his original manga was deeply flawed and far from his best work, and only after his death could the film be made.
If Tezuka through some working of magic or science was given the opportunity to see this film made against his wishes, even he would have to admit that it does his art justice. The original character designs are given fluid animation and backed by impressive and well-integrated CGI. The movie is simply gorgeous, and a viewer watching only for the eyecandy certainly won't be disappointed.
However, simple spectacle is not enough to carry a film for many of us, and this is where nuanced characterization and good storytelling come in. The central story, about a boy and an android girl on the run from the antagonist, is one with potential. Unfortunately, the supposed 'main' characters are hardly fleshed out at all, and the audience is given little reason to care about their fate. The obligatory 'android learning how to become human' moments never happen, or any other development of the two leads for that matter.
The setting and supporting cast are considerably more interesting. Over the course of the movie, the city undergoes considerable change, as social forces and malevolent schemes ultimately lead to upheaval and chaos. And the antagonists have a decent amount of personal issues and character development - more than the leads, in fact. However, the simple truth is none of this is enough to carry the film in lieu of an interesting central story.
And then, in the final ten minutes, the stakes are suddenly raised, and attention is suddenly riveted to the screen. The final scenes are moving - even devastatingly so.
However, despite its excellent finale and interesting setting, this film's core is empty. The eyecandy makes it worth a watch, but it fails as a dramatic piece.
tl;dr - Good visuals, setting, and bad guys. Unfortunately, two incredibly boring lead characters waste almost all the potential the movie had. The ending is good, though.
Of course, this is very much a minority view, and you'll probably see the movie anyways. I'd just recommend that you rent before you splurge on the super-deluxe box set. read more
Oct 25, 2008
The plot is fairly easy to follow and the characters are easy to like. It's a good sci-fi story with its own elements of social commentary. I rarely end up liking stories involving robots, but I have a soft spot for their oldschool portrayal in this film. I'll admit, though, the plot isn't as solid as could be, but it still has a very solid foundation and nice pacing to it.
Metropolis is an enjoyable film with eye-popping animation that I have no doubt anyone who starts this visual adventure of a masterpiece will watch all the way to the end, and will probably appreciate it. read more
Nov 5, 2012
Metropolis is…a manga written in 1949 by Osamu Tezuka. Its similarities to the original film are pretty limited, mainly because Tezuka hadn’t even seen the film when he wrote the manga. He’d only seen a single picture in a magazine and thought it looked pretty rad.
Metropolis is…an anime movie from 2001 that’s loosely based on Tezuka’s manga, but also tries to bring in some plot elements from the original movie. It had an all-star team on it, such as Rintaro the director, one of my all time favourite anime folks Katsuhiro Otomo doing the scripts, and the production being done at Madhouse.
Metropolis is…not very good.
I feel a bit awkward not liking Metropolis, because there’s a hell of a lot of things to like about it. For one, it’s fucking gorgeous. Incredible detail has gone into each background drawing and there is rarely a shot where characters aren’t moving. Even background characters are doing little things like picking up bottles and throwing coins and puffing cigars. It seems weird to highlight something like this, but when you spend all your time watching the usual cost-cutting techniques of anime produced for television, it really stands out here. The music is fantastic too. It’s very blues orientated, which ties into the seedy underworld feel the lower levels of this heavily class-based world have.
The movie clearly has an actual point to the story too. It’s about class warfare and how the lowest levels of society will rise up eventually. It’s particularly striking how the rebellion starts with the second class citizens throwing their little fight, but the real rebellion is right at the end when the robots all rise up under their ‘charismatic’ leader. Tie this is with government corruption and how the desires of those in power, as heartfelt and real those feelings might be, can lead to the destruction of their city. There’s some pretty obvious allusions to the Tower of Babel too and the danger of trying to become like a god. In other words, this movie is not like the other 2000-era movie with Katsuhiro Otomo on board, Steamboy. With Steamboy, all the pretty visuals in the world couldn’t hide that the story was a total damp squib with dumb idealism and pathetic characters mwahaha go my biased views go. With Metropolis, there’s clearly an artistic vision here and a story with proper depth.
So why am I not feeling all that hyped about Metropolis? This might be a bit harder to explain.
You know that thing I was praising earlier on in this review? How characters would always be moving, including the background characters? How detailed the background art was? The movie also seemed to realise how great it was at this and leant on it too much. You get a lot of scenes of one character walking, another character walking with him, the second character looking back and slowing down, then jogging to catch back up with the character they were walking with. There’s lots of scenes of characters walking through the streets, or robots doing busywork, or fat Tezuka designs smoking cigars. It’s all set-dressing to develop the world, but most of it is redundant. When I say ‘a lot of scenes’, I really mean it. At least half of the first hour of the movie was spent on these shots of ‘world-building’. They get very boring very fast, which also serves to give the movie a painfully slow plodding pace.
The story is told almost entirely through symbolism and representative actions, which I generally like. That’s how I normally feel a story should be told. Thing is, this leaves the characters with rather little to say, but speak they do anyway. This leaves them with nothing of interest to say beyond idle chit chat, which leads me to the obvious conclusion that every single one is a boring person. Occasionally they might say something of interest that ties into the overall themes of the movie, but because the animation has been diligently working that point constantly, it’s again pretty redundant stuff. Combine these non-characters with a story that takes forever to move anywhere and has very little of excitement occurring and you get what makes Metropolis such a drag.
I knew writing this review would be difficult. Reading back over the last 2 paragraphs now, a lot of the things I appear to be complaining about are aspects of other anime I love. The whole thing about characters not being people but merely ideals slotted into the story might as well be a line from a review of Madoka Magica. Letting the visuals tell the story and leaving the characters to just blabber on about whatever could be a line from a review of FLCL. So what is it that this movie is missing? Some kind of X factor? Some oomph to get me invested?
Perhaps the best course of action might be to look at the end of the movie and see what it did right. For all the plodding most of the movie did, the end really ramps up and provides some of the most striking imagery I’ve seen in any anime. Absolutely jaw-dropping, end-of-the-world events centring on what had previously been this figure of purity and idealism warp into a mutant-baby-from-Akira monstrosity, but still had parts of its original face intact to make the shock turn even more grotesque and eerie. That scene had oomph, but it also wouldn’t have worked if the proceeding 90 minutes of rather boring studge hadn’t existed to build up the themes in the first place. It’s one of those cases where some reviewers would claim you require ‘patience’, which is a nice way of saying that the piece suffers from an inability to make its world-building and set up interesting to watch and only becomes interesting once Shit Starts Getting Real.
When Shit Starts Getting Real in Metropolis, it’s an exhilarating experience that brings together the narrative arcs of several plot threads in one satisfying conclusion. It’s a shame that they couldn’t make the entire rest of the movie interesting rather than relying on high production values and hoping that alone will keep you entertained. read more
Jul 17, 2009
Metropolis for me, was very mediocre for numerous reasons, first lets start with the story. The story itself, was very difficult to follow. There are many sub-plots and all of those are trying to coexist peacefully, but that doesn't happen. You have the whole robot thing, and the whole rebellion thing, and Tima and Kenichi's relationship going on, and the whole father-son relationship, and Tima's struggle to figure out who she is; with all of that the director really needed to have all the sub-plots flow together smoothly, but it didn't. It seems like the only time you really feel like the story is going smoothly and together is at the end.
Another thing that REALLY bugged me was the music. You can tell the director of music really loves Jazz, because that's all there is in the movie. Don't get me wrong, I love me some Jazz, but it seemed the director just put anything he wanted anywhere. Yeah, there was maybe one song that fit well with its ironic tone in a random scene, but even at the end, the most dramatic part of the movie, the music seemed very anti-climatic, and drew my attention away from the scene.
The next contributing factor is the time period/scenery. Hey, the city was pretty cool and the idea was pretty unique for it, but in the movie, you barely get ANY info on the city, or the blimp like thing they introduce at the very beginning. I still don't even know what it was used for. :?. And the whole moving from level to level thing was never really explained either. The time period is also very confusing, because by the looks of some of the clothes, it seems some of them are in the 40's or something, yet they're in a city with robots? Weird, weird, weird.
Personally, I thought the only thing that redeemed the movie was its main character. The main girl, Tima, is interesting because she's very unique and she represents purity/innocence in the movie, and I liked that. She had a certain quality about her that made her appealing, for me at least; something that kept me guessing. Other than that, the other characters aren't really that interesting or different.
Altogether, I give this movie a 5. For me, it was built up to be something it wasn't, people going as far as saying this was a "classic", but really? I think anime can do much better than that. If someone were to ask if I would recommend this to them, I would say definitely "No, its probably just going to be a disappointing waist of time". If you want something better and similar, I say go for "Origins, Spirits of the Past". Personally, I would think that has a way higher chance of being something you'll enjoy, depending on what you like.
Feb 15, 2008
Jan 5, 2013
Each of the characters that actually have a big part to play in this show actually has nice personalities even though they sometimes fall into a norm. Tezuka always had an interesting way of mixing robots and human characteristics. His robot creations are unlike anything you really ever seen before this time for the most part. They have a playfulness even if the story is supposed to get rather dark. Tezuka always had a reason behind his stories and this is no exception. The story talks about what separates man and machine, what it really means to be human, and all that wonderful stuff.
The Artwork is definitely Osamu’s style with its large noses and hair that mostly falls over the eyes. Everything about it is rather fun looking and interesting. A lot of characters are strange proportions with rather thick legs, hands about the same size as gloved hands and so on. The colors are mostly bright and colorful even in the darker parts, of the show, the rust pretty much showing up brightly. There is a small feeling that we are looking threw an antic lens at times with some of the grainy feelings it gives off. Sometimes as well, we get a rather panted look for the still images like the face where the hair actually moves about it on a cell. At least, that’s what it looks like.
The English voices aren’t bad for how odd the show is though they play it off sort of like a radio drama. It works perfectly with the feel of the show since it looks like it’s from the time of ‘War of the Worlds’. The music also plays into that with the 1950’s New York attitude. It makes the show a bit more relatable in a sense because it brings the old charms we know and love about a actually city with this new futuristic world that may come soon to us. read more
Mar 28, 2008
Feb 20, 2013
1) a series instead of a movie. It has a very heavy on themes story yet only movie-worth of duration to show them. This obviously takes away a lot from what it could have been if more time was invested in each of its numerous aspects.
2) a lot more character-centric instead of story-centric. You are not made to believe that any one of its characters has the tiniest control over their actions. They are more like being pulled through events set in stone they can’t do anything about. There is also very little time invested one each one of them to feel like they are at least trying to do something significant in general. This tends to make the cast unsympathetic and even useless.
3) closer to the expectations of the era it came out. Its art-style is way too retro to appeal to the modern audience. Its themes have also been analyzed much better in older shows and movies to appeal to an older audience.
4) not feeling like a loose remake of the famous homonymous movie from 1927. Those who have seen it will most likely hate how they turned a live action to an animated feature with blobby characters.
So, why they made this movie then? I suspect just for the nostalgia factor. It is based on a manga by the late Osamu Tezuka (inspired by but not based on the homonymous movie classic), so it would feel nice to the people who grew up with his works. It is also a retro-styled movie which will appeal to all those who grew up with cartoons and anime from the 50’s. So as you can tell, it aims at a very narrowed audience, since most of them would by now be either dead or not interested in cartoons for decades. As for the rest who would really sit down to watch it for old times sake, I am not sure they would appreciate how it combined the old style with modern computer generated images.
Thus not even nostalgia will work. You get this obsolete-looking (in style) movie, showing a hundred events, each one not lasting more than a few minutes, and everything feeling like a dried up patchwork of sci-fi ideas you have already seen and analyzed much better elsewhere. How could it possibly work compared to Ghost in the Shell, or Blade Runner? How can these blobs of characters possibly make you feel anything?
And skip all that; let’s just suppose we are to criticize the events of the movie based on context and not proper duration or presentation, and without comparing them to any earlier works of fiction. They still suck in reasoning. Here, let me tell you why.
1) Workers take up arms to drive away the robots who steal their jobs. It’s as if the robots are to blame for everything when in reality it was man himself who created them to be so damn loyal and efficient. So instead of attacking the root of the problem (the people creating them or making money from them) they just randomly attack the symptoms (poor robots just doing what they were told). And even if that is supposed to be showing the folly of man, as he directs his frustration towards the wrong issues, it still makes no sense as these workers end up being eliminated by said robots. This renders all this aspect of the movie as completely useless, since not only they attacked the wrong people (or in this case, robots), they also didn’t manage to accomplish anything.
2) A detective and his nephew come to the city to investigate a case. Trust me when I say they didn’t do much of an investigation, as the robot girl was found by complete accident and the man responsible simply revealed himself. Another useless part of the film.
3) The big boss of the city wants to create a robot that will apathetically control all other machines of the world, and for that he asks to resemble a dead girl with feelings? This makes no sense.
4) What would the bib boss’ son would gain by sabotaging the whole project? He would definitely not make his father to like him more. Thus not even he makes any sense.
5) What is the detective boy’s role in the film? To look all cute and innocent next to the robot girl? He didn’t offer anything other than being dragged from one scene to another.
6) Why would we consider the robot girl to be a tragic character? It is a robot that hardly does anything in the whole film.
7) Why did everything go to hell in the end anyway? It is never explained.
So no, it is not a good film. Not by miles.
And now for some excused scorings.
ART SECTION: 7/10
General Artwork 2/2 (nicely done)
Character Figures 1/2 (blobs)
Backgrounds 2/2 (nicely done)
Animation 1/2 (basic)
Visual Effects 1/2 (basic)
SOUND SECTION: 7/10
Voice Acting 2/3 (corny but fitting with the feeling of the series)
Music Themes 3/4 (not great but fitting with the feeling of the series)
Sound Effects 2/3 (ok I guess)
STORY SECTION: 6/10
Premise 2/2 (interesting)
Pacing 1/2 (slow)
Complexity 2/2 (rich in context)
Plausibility 0/2 (none)
Conclusion 1/2 (messy)
CHARACTER SECTION: 4/10
Presence 0/2 (very weak)
Personality 1/2 (generic)
Backdrop 1/2 (generic and simplistic but it’s there)
Development 1/2 (overblown but it’s there)
Catharsis 1/2 (overblown but it’s there)
VALUE SECTION: 1/10
Historical Value 0/3 (none)
Rewatchability 0/3 (too boring to rewatch)
Memorability 1/4 (aside from nostalgia, no reason to remember it)
ENJOYMENT SECTION: 2/10
Nice visuals but that is all.
VERDICT: 4.5/10 read more
Nov 4, 2011
This movie has wonderful animation, in parts exceptional beautiful.
The soundtrack fits, and the story is very good and thought provoking.
The editing is done very well, and by my opinion makes the movie flow perfectly. The charcters have substance and you care for them.
And Its not a typical anime.
This movie is an animation adaption of the silent black and white movie from 1927 by Fritz Lang.
(Even though it's a silent movie you should watch it, Its great. The most expensive movie of its time)
I think this new version works well. It hasnt as much obvious references to marxism and the christian bible, as the original one does.
But they both have an interesting philosophy and also perhaps morale. read more
Feb 13, 2011
The story revolves around a city named Metropolis, a city filled with creation, structure, and many action. There is one scientist named Dr. Laughton, a Japanese detective named Shunsaku and his nephew Kenicihi. Soon, they arrive at Metropolis and the scientist (I guess or whatshisface) creates a robotic girl named Tima. Kenicichi befriends this girl and decides to help her through the dangers of the city.
Since I'm a child, I couldn't really understand this movie. It didn't have enough action in it as I thought it would, but many adventures and suspense. The movie did have a tearful ending and some interesting scenes, but that still didn't enthuse me.
The art and animation style didn't bother me too much; it was beautiful. Much like a Hayou Miyazaki film such as Spirited Away or Cowboy Bebop The Movie or anything that was made in 2001 with the same art style. I loved how this film was drawn and the characters too (even though they're a little smaller than I expected). The animation was also beautiful as well as the art style.
The dub I guess wasn't too bad. Reminded me of some of the Fullmetal Alchemist actors who dubbed their characters (if they're in this film) and some of them sound like the ones from the Lupin III franchise. The little boy was very cute as well as the little girl and the scientist did well with his voice.
The characters weren't too bad. Very imaginative and the kids were very cute, but sadly, I didn't have much enthusiasm with them as I thought I would; but they seem very connected to this movie.
I didn't really enjoy this movie. Although, like I said, the animation/art/dub/characters didn't bother me too much so I guess I can't hate the movie, but it's just something that didn't really interest me as well as other movies out there in the world.
The movie was a HUGE disappointment compared to all the other 2001 movies I've seen which were FANTASTIC but this one has to be the worst out of them. The movie put me half to sleep and I didn't really focus on it too much, it just made me almost turn the television off and watch a different anime. But I had to watch it so that I could review this, sorry.
Overall: 4/10 read more
Apr 28, 2013
Usually, I tend to drift away from anime movies that are not 2006 and up but, for 2001 it was genius and almost completely futuristic. I had heard of this movie before but, I never watched it until recently. I think that if you're looking for a movie that will keep you guessing and will maybe make you cry than I suggest this one :) read more
Apr 21, 2013
Story: In an age where robots are omnipresent and discriminated against, a mad scientist creates a new perfect being destinated to rule the world.... *yawns*. The story was simplistic, rushed, highly predictible (I could figure out everything in advance...) and with almost 0 character development. It is also very slow paced and could have fit in half the time. If you want an anime that keeps you on your toes, this is not the one. At least the story makes sense and flows fairly well, so it's watchable.
Art: Lots of eye candy which is the main reason I kept watching it to the end.
Sound: Well you gotta love jazz, I personnally think the music didnt fit at all.
Character: It's very unfocused, does not make me feel they spent a lot of time on character design...
Enjoyment: This is very slow paced for no reason at all.
Overall: Very underwhelmed for something so highly recommended, I give it a 6/10 just because of the eye candy.