by Keita Browne
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Synopsis: In the year 2000, Alice Hayashi wins the lunar sweepstakes and becomes the youngest person to go out into space. As she ventures through space, her shuttle malfunctions and forces her to crash in the North Pole. Alice soon learns that she has been catapulted to the year 2030. She enlists the help of some newfound friends Yuan, and his robot that she named Maria, to help her get back home. In the process, she discovers the strange phenomena of people who have gone missing in Lapland are some how linked to the environment and that her past is mysteriously linked to the future.
Good Points: This movie plays like a video game. This would be a great watch for Anime, RP (Role Play) Gamers, and Manga lovers. The graphics are pretty well done. At times, the movements were a little stiff or unnatural when some characters were moving around, but as a whole, the graphics looked great. The action in the film was excellent. I felt totally engaged with the very creative and unique fighting sequences.
Bad Points: The sound quality in the Japanese Audio isn’t very good. In the beginning, you could barely hear what they were saying. It took a long time for the storyline to become involving. Since a majority of the story was done non-linearly, it took a long time to figure out the storyline or the plot. Once the storyline and characters were established, the story took off at a rapid rate. Also, the storyline/plot was a little too predictable. Also, it took a long time to establish the history of Lapland (the name of the land), and to establish the ensemble of characters involved in the story. A.Li.Ce played out like the typical Anime/Manga sci-fi scenario of the hero is being transported to another time, the character’s past affects the future, and all the other elements that follow in the scenario.
A.Li.Ce was directed by Kenichi Maejima, written by Masahiro Yoshimoto, with art direction by Hirosuke Kizaki. In a nutshell, if you’re into Anime and Manga, then definitely check this one out. If Anime, Manga, and Role Playing Games aren’t your thing, you should probably pass.
Keita Browne is a screenwriter and Anime writer in Chicago.
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