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So Astro Boy is Pretty Good, Eh?

Published October 15, 2009 in Early Reviews
By Ryan Parsons | Image property of Summit Entertainment
Astro Boy Poster Astro Boy
Remember the time when a CG-animated toon was guaranteed to be good? I mean, putting Final Fantasy aside, Pixar lead the revolution with hit after hit. But today has come, and we now know that a CG-toon can be every bit of rubbish as drawn or live-action. So far I've liked what I've seen from Astro Boy. The animation is unique and vibrant, and there seems to be plenty of action. While the earliest buzz to come my way said the film was "entertaining as hell," the first official reports aren't as convinced.

Astro Boy Reviewed


Though they do remain positive. From what I can tell from reading a couple of the reports, the consensus is that, while the film is great to watch, it doesn't leave much of a lasting impression. Capiche? Well, to help clear things up, here are a couple snippets from reviews below:

Variety
Appropriately for a film about robots, efficiency is the primary virtue of "Astro Boy," a well-oiled CG-animated superhero pic that makes up in competence and vitality what it lacks in originality. Adapted from the classic Japanese toon, this thoroughly Westernized film will likely have little appeal to devotees of the source material, instead targeting tots and borrowing from a variety of recent animated pics. Slated for an Oct. 23 release Stateside, two weeks after opening in Asia, the film easily should draw sizable family crowds and hold their attention well; whether it sticks in their memory is another question.



THR
Derivative bits aside, the pint-sized Japanese icon takes flight in vibrant CG animation -- no 3D glasses required.

Finally going the big-screen, computer-generated route, the iconic Japanese hero manages to keep his innate lovability intact in a visually dynamic if overly eager-to-please family feature cobbled together with parts reclaimed from various animated classics. Although the social-political allegorical elements could have benefited from a slyer, less obvious touch, an energetic voice cast headed by Freddie Highmore and Nicolas Cage ultimately saves the day.


What has me worried is the political opinions that are evidently in the film. I hate it when films try to push an agenda, especially when blank-minded kids are watching. See for yourself by clicking the bold links above.

Astro Boy opens to theaters on October 23rd.

For the trailers, posters and more movie info, go to the Astro Boy Movie Page.
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Ryan Parsons
Sources: Image property of Summit Entertainment
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