Silent Mobius the Motion Picture
In 2028, a secret war is being waged against horrific demonic invaders dubbed the "Lucifer Hawk" by a small band of women with unusual powers, the AMP. During a routine battle against one of these creatures, Katsumi Liqueur, finds herself under attack and flashes back to several years earlier when she first joined the AMP. Soon she will have to make some difficult choices concerning her destiny and her role in the AMP.
Silent Mobius is a fairly lengthy manga with a large cast of characters, so trying to compress the story line into 50 minutes is effectively impossible. It seems the script writers of this movie adaptation, perhaps aware of the futility of such a task, opted not to attempt that. Instead, what they have wisely done is focus in the development of the main character from the manga, Katsumi, and using her AMP origin story to help flesh out the background of the conflict. The result is a fairly accessible episode in a long running story that provides a good look at a woman dragged by fate into a vast and horrific conflict against decidedly alien invaders.
Unfortunately, because they focus so much on Katsumi, there is little development of any of the other characters. While this might annoy fans of the manga or television series, as a stand alone feature, I think it was wise for them to focus on Katsumi, as you don't really feel all that cheated in the character development department since they do such a good job with her. I tend to think if they had to tried to spread out the character development a bit more, it would have just ended up shallow overall.
While normally I'm a bit leery of flashback as a plot device, it is highly effective in this feature allowing them to develop the background story without having to resort to unnecessarily expository dialogue or just otherwise advancing the story without explaining to the viewer. This was my first exposure to the Silent Mobius franchise and I had no trouble following what was going on or understanding the issues involved. The resolution of the feature does not complete the story of the fight against the Lucifer Hawk, but the closure, particularly in regards to Katsumi's character development, did not make the film seem open ended. It made me interested enough in checking out the franchise later without feeling like I had wasted my time by watching the film.
Despite being a bit of an older title, the technical aspects are still of good quality. There was an unusual attention to detail in a lot of the design work and the action scenes flowed rather well. While it has been surpassed by a number of films, the production quality still tends to stand up pretty well to a lot of more recent titles. It has been about five or six years since I've seen this title, so honestly I have a bit of trouble remembering the background music in and of itself, but the end theme was pleasant sounding enough. I don't remember having any particular gripes with the music though I don't remember being particularly impressed with it either.
A good stand alone science fiction action piece or a nice introduction to the Silent Mobius franchise. If you are a die hard fan of the manga or television series, you might be disappointed that they have such a laser-like focus on Katsumi at the expense of the other characters and might want to subtract a star. If you don't like science fiction or demon invasion stories, you also might want to subtract a star. — Jeremy A Beard
Recommended Audience: While not as gory as similar titles, there is still a lot of AMP versus demon battling going on which in some scenes can be somewhat graphic. There is a bit of nudity here and there but really it is the violence that makes this more of an older teens title.
Version(s) Viewed: VHS, Japanese with English subtitles
Review Status: Full (1/1)
Silent Mobius the Motion Picture © 1991 Kadokawa / Starchild / AIC
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