HEAVY METAL 2000
Heavy Metal 2000 deals with a space pirate by the name of Tyler (voiced by Michael Ironside) who stumbles onto the key to immortality. The holder of the key however becomes more and more psychotic as long as the key is in his possession. The key itself is a crystalline shard that when placed in a sacred stone on a distant world releases the locks that protect a virtual fountain of immortality. In his pursuit of immortality, Tyler kills all in his path. His initial conquest is in the way of the Planet Eden. Tyler and his band of pirates lay waste to the planet and kill all but two of its inhabitants F.A.K.K.2 and her equally buxom sister. From here, Tyler begins his quest for galactic domination. There is one thing that Tyler has under-prepared for and that is the vengeance wielded by F.A.K.K.2 (as voiced by Julie Strain)! Heavy Metal 2000 takes you on an action packed journey from planetary carnage to galactic devastation with more T&A than you can shake a stick at. Be warned, this is definitely NOT for children.
The audio and video for the disc are both first rate! The disc boasts a 5.1 platform that literally blast you from your home theater into the center of the action. A Heavy metal soundtrack that blisters your ears drives the film. Perfectly chosen for the feature, the soundtrack drives the film home with all the fury needed to deliver the unique aural textures used in the movie. The center is perfectly used and the front to rear left to right action is fairly intense. Definitely a lease breaking experience should you're volume be loud enough! The video is a very clean artifact free transfer that's pretty incredible for an American made "cartoon". The colors are vibrant and the textures of the film are equally intense. The marriage of CGI and traditional American animation are put to good use in the feature providing some pretty stark contrasts and surprisingly enough some pretty decent imagery. Not at all on par with Anime, this does provide a fairly decent video experience. If you are a fan of anime as I am, you are spoiled by the level of intensity and attention to detail that Japanese Anime has incorporated in the bulk of its films. Unlike Anime, the characters are blocky and full of hard edges that typify the American animated experience. The fluidity needed to propel the film from cartoon to anime is definitely missing in this film.
For those of you who actually know who Julie strain is, you'll be happy to know that a 30-minute feature on her entitled "Julie Strain Super Goddess" is included on the disc. In addition very short animation tests and 5 animatic comparisons are included. For the Heavy Metal fan, an isolated music score is included as well. A photo gallery featuring Julie Strain and a few of the matte shots for the various planetary scenes is also included. As well as trailers for other Columbia Tri-Star films are included.
Heavy Metal 2000 is different. It's not good but it's not terribly bad either. There's a fair amount of nudity and a great degree of bad language so, this is definitely not for the little ones. As an animated film, I would have expected more had it been an anime title. As it isn't anime, it met all of my low expectations for video quality and execution. Typically, no one but the Japanese present animation in the way it should be seen. Anime is an art form. Heavy Metal is for lack of a better term scribble scrabble. The artistic differences are so great that once you've seen anime, everything else is going to pale in comparison. However, if your animated feature tastes fall within the genre of Scooby-Doo and Captain Caveman, then you won't be disappointed. Heavy Metal has a following that stems from it's long standing magazine to it's first foray in to feature films back in the early 80's. Then, it was groundbreaking film work, as America had never before seen an "Adult" animated title. Now with so many advances in the field, this particular effort is more of a throw back to a time at the beginning of the whole animated process. Simply put, if you are a fan of the whole Heavy Metal experience, you don't even need to read the review. However, for passers by, I'd say rent it first to see if you're into this kind of thing. Rent It