Imagine an Afghanistan in which the fighting is done by elite teams of soldiers who are actually werewolves. Or an underground fight club where humans “pilot” Chthonic beasts in the ring. Or a post-apocalyptic Earth inhabited by robots who tour dead cities and encounter sentient cats. Or an off-world farming colony where the “bugs” require a bit more than DDT to be kept under control. Or a steampunk Hong Kong haunted by an avenging spirit-beast from a past age of magic…all these scenarios (and more) are imagined in the animated anthology, “Love, Death, and Robots”, a collection of 18 short animated films ranging in style from full CGI to hand drawn anime.
Dark, violent, quirkily humorous and often (no pun intended) graphic, “Love, Death, and Robots” is short-form anime film-making at its best. As in any anthology, some of the stories work better than others, and the widely varying visual styles will either charm or grate, depending on the aesthetic sensibilities of the viewer. But given most of the films run for less than ten minutes, they pack in an awful lot of subject matter on the back of very high production standards. If you’ve never previously had much exposure to animation, or you’re not sure you could sit through a full-length animated feature, this anthology, with its bite-sized chunks of anime splendour, may provide you with an accessible entrée to worlds weird, wonderful, and terrifying.
© Text Copyright Brendan E Byrne 2019. All rights reserved.