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ARMITAGE III POLY-MATRIX THE MOVIE ($30) is a top notch Anime release on DVD, which has been given the royal treatment with THX certification and a Dolby Digital 5.1 channel soundtrack. Like many of these futurist Japanese animated films, the plot of ARMITAGE III seems at least partly influenced by American science fiction films such as BLADE RUNNER and ROBOCOP. Set on Mars, the futuristic story concerns a deranged killer who has taken it upon himself to eliminate an illegal new breed of robots, known as thirds, which outwardly seem virtually indistinguishable from living human beings. The two Martian cops assigned to the case must unravel the mystery behind the thirds and why a madman has targeted them for destruction. Naomi Armitage, the cyber-punk lead investigator, has a personal stake in the case and will do whatever it takes to bring the perpetrator of these particularly nasty crimes to justice. Like most adult Anime productions, ARMITAGE III features some nudity, plus a lot of action and violence. While not for the kiddies, ARMITAGE III is superior Anime that will keep fans of the genre happy. The American language version of ARMITAGE III features the voices of Elizabeth Berkley and Kiefer Sutherland.

ARMITAGE III has been given a terrific Letterboxed release by Pioneer Entertainment. The Letterboxed presentation frames the production at 1.85:1 and the compositions appear well balanced at this aspect ratio. Image quality is excellent with everything appearing sharp and well defined. Color reproduction is also excellent. MPEG-2 digital compression artifacts weren’t very obvious on this DVD. The Dolby Digital 5.1 channel soundtrack is a knockout and takes full advantage of the sound format’s multi-channel capabilities. The sound surrounds the viewer, as well as having great directional effects and bass. The music on the soundtrack is also well mixed into the multiple channels. Other soundtrack options include a matrixed Dolby Surround track. Subtitles are available in Japanese and English. The interactive menus are slick and well produced with animation, music and sound. The menus give one access to a theatrical trailer and detailed production notes. ARMITAGE III is another excellent example of why Anime has found its perfect medium on DVD. Absolutely recommended.


Armitage - Dual Matrix/Poly Matrix


DVD reviews are Copyright 1998 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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