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ICE
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Reviewed by: Mike Catalano

Directed by: Makoto Kobayashi

Starring:
Kurumi Mamiya
Junko Minagawa
Yűko Ohshima

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
In a crazy future, a strange environmental disaster has wiped out the entire male population. With the world dividing harshly into separate female-lead territories, a small population in Tokyo has been split into two sides: one that accepts the world is going to end and the other that believes there is a way to save the world through science.

Is it good movie?
First of all, I think it's only fair to state that I am not a big fan of Japanese anime movies. When the entire thing is subtitled, forcing me to look down to read during all the action, I'm even less of a fan. Nevertheless, because I love Arrow in the Head, I sat through ICE and now, I can safely say... I don't have to sit through it again.

Again, please don't be too put off by my harshness. I say this because clearly, I could see that the animated film was well-made (by anime standards, I suppose). There's some swift action and pretty heavy gore. The filmmakers did put together a story that tried working some creative angles (however, the whole thing was pretty tough to follow, which may have been due to the translation barrier).

I just don't get why most plot lines of these anime flicks have to be so damn complicated and convoluted. I honestly couldn't tell who the main character was because, first of all, there were so many, and second, there were these flashbacks or flashforwards with people from both times sort of crossing paths, uh... Shit, now my brain hurts. I'm not sure where I was going with the previous sentence anymore. Maybe you can decipher it. If so, then maybe ICE won't be as tough to digest for you as it was for me.

Also, maybe I've just been spoiled by the incredibly vivid animation I'm used to seeing nowadays on the big screen, but for an animated flick that didn't come out too long ago, the animation seemed very old. Maybe that is just the type of look that the makers of Japanese anime always go for, but I didn't care for it. The colors seemed too dull to fully accentuate the type of action that took place during the running time. In other words, ICE wasn't that cool.

Video / Audio
Video Widescreen 1.33:1

Audio Japanese dolby digital with English subtitles.

The Extras
Just so you know, this aspect of the DVD was not handled very well. All you do is click on a link labeled "Special Features" and the three things below just start running/

A featurette called Ice Goes Global.

A Music Video by some group called AKB48.

Finally, the film's Trailers.

Last Call
Too many characters, dull animation, and annoying subtitles further confirmed my distaste for Japanese anime flicks. Even a somewhat decent story seemed to be squandered by way too much exposition. Should have been more about the bloody action than all the commentaries on the environment and science.

ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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