Review of 'Vexille (Bekushiru: 2077 Nihon sakoku)'

vexille.jpg In the not-so-distant future the world has decided that caution should be exercised in the development of robotics and technology with the UN imposing such restrictions. Japan disagrees with this approach and eventually seals itself off from the outside world by installing a shield around it that cannot be penetrated. No one outside of Japan knows what is going on inside. Ten years later our story begins.

Vexille is the leader of the American SWORD unit that is tasked with penetrating the Japanese barrier and finding out what has happened to the country. What awaits her and her team is nothing short of shocking.

A startling display of Japanese computer animation, Vexille never leaves the viewer time to catch their breath as one set piece flows into another. The human characters do not entirely convince the viewer with plastic-like skin which contrasts with the vividly photo-realistic backgrounds all around.

Character development here is minimal though I found the humanity expressed when they finally get into Japan very touching, and tragic. This is very much an anti-Japanese Development movie written by the Japanese which itself is quite refreshing – It questions the long history Japan has of isolating itself from the world around it and rejecting all that is foreign. The main heroes here are actually American with the bad guys being Japanese. Interesting.

An interesting and exciting work of modern Japanese animation. Definitely one to have a look at…

Rating: “Nearly perfect, but not quite”

Review Date: 2008-05-06

Directed by: Fumihiko Sori

Studio: Momentum

Year: 2007

Length: 109 minutes

Genre: Japanese Animation

Other reviewed films by Fumihiko Sori: