Critic Reviews

59

Metascore

Based on 13 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
The plot is often bewilderingly complex and the dense layers of subterfuge hard to follow, but by the climax the fairy tale has been twisted into a fascist fable of realpolitik mercenary opportunism.
90
L.A. Weekly
Where Okiura leads the art of animation into truly uncharted territory is in his character work, the precise behavioral strokes that bring people to life in two dimensions.
80
Village Voice
A superbly crafted science-fiction fairy tale that's both Grimm and grim.
75
The film is built to quaver and buckle along with its victims and martyrs. In an almost soulful way, it bespeaks the reality lingering when the final fantasy ends.
50
Characters are undermined by the inexpressive animation that mars the majority of animated films: Their haunted inner lives are clearly meant to take center stage, but their faces are blank and two-dimensional.
50
New York Daily News
Dubbed for U.S. audiences, the film has suffered in translation.
50
It's a gorgeous albeit depressing mess, as distancing and despairing as a realpolitik wipeout.
50
Christian Science Monitor
The story's emphasis is on action, but there are some sensitive moments and interesting ideas along the way.
50
New Times (L.A.)
It makes as good a case as any for the use of animation as a medium for serious, mature features.
40
Something to behold; it's just not much to watch, despite admirable ambition and a few tense, well-thought-out sequences.

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