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Avalon
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Reviews & Ratings for
Avalon More at IMDbPro »

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Somekind of masterpiece....

Author: human movie database from Cuijk, The Netherlands
2 January 2004



Dear viewers,

I heard a lot about this movie, and when I saw it down at the shop. I just HAD to buy it. It's a wonderful film, TimeOut Filmguide described it as 'Somekind of masterpiece' and they're right. People who think they are going to see 'The Matrix' come out cheated just as some people did who gave comments. And they are right too. Oshii loves long shots where nothing happens, but it gives you an insight in what kind of person 'ASH' is. The person who wrote 'Huge dissapointent' said that Oshii repeats a whole piece of the movie but that falls into place in the end when she finds something out about 'Class Real'.

I think it is a masterpiece, I love the movie. And if you open your eyes and you let yourself be taken into that strange 'Avalon'-world. You will come out a different person!

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Beautiful

9/10
Author: Nephilim-6 from Holland
25 October 2002

First of I have to say that I LOVE this movie. It's beautiful in the way it looks and sounds and tells its story.

First of I'd like to comment on a few reviews I've seen on here.

1st the one about it being in Polish: Yes it is in Polish but so what? If a movie isn't in English does that mean it's not worth as much as a typical Hollywood movie?

2nd the one about the 'bad' music: The music is beautiful. This isn't meant to be a rock and roll type action movie like The Matrix. It wants to create mysterious atmosphere. And it succeeds in that. The music reminded me a lot of a mixture between the music of Ghost In The Shell and the music of the Riven game. Haunting and elegant

3rd the slow storytelling nature: People... This is not The Matrix. THAT was an action movie. THIS is a cyberpunk thriller. Furthermore it questions alienation and the dangers of virtual reality and ofcourse what makes something reality.

On to the content. Sometime in the future people are becoming addicted to am illegal virtual reality war RPG simulation. Why is it illegal? It's dangerous to your health... VERY dangerous. One woman called Ash is one of the star players. Many players form parties to gain more experience, however she doesn't want to... Why? Ghosts from the past perhaps? But then she gets an incentive... A hidden level... What's a good gamer to do? EVEN if it means it might leave her a vegetable in real world... But does she care? And why is she doing it? Those same ghosts? Or is it something else..

In conclusion This isn't a movie for everyone. However if you like intelligent movies and science fiction then this is highly recommended.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Best VR movie ever

10/10
Author: Ilya Kochetov from Moscow, Russia
24 September 2002

Avalon is another masterpiece of the Ghost in the Shell creator, Mamoru Oshii. While borrowing some elements from the Cyberpunk world, Oshii definitely moves forward and deep into the realm of philosophycal and mind-twisting concepts. Aesteticaly pleasing, the movie is very appealing with its nice mix of action and story-telling episodes. While focusing on Virtual Reality concept, Mamoru Oshii didn't forget to forge something that will make your feel like you are on the Avalon battlefield too.

Soundtrack also adds quite and atmosphere and is definitely worth buying if you can get your hands on it.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant. 20 years ahead of its time though for most viewers.

10/10
Author: Kropotkin from Austin, Texas
5 August 2002

Unless one has spent months, even years, of real time in the virtual worlds that do exist today, as limited as they are, this film may have limited meaning, and even then the full story requires much of the viewer. If virtual reality comes to be a replacement for the real world, then Avalon gives us a taste of where humanity (or what remains of it) may stand. In this sense, Oshii's work is far (far) ahead of its time, and is more significant than popular movies such as The Matrix or ExistenZ.

Ash is the heroine and anti-heroine at the same time. The world in which Ash lives is drab and dank to no end. Humanity appears to have forsaken the real world, leading one to think a massive deflationary depression has occurred. Clearly, virtual reality has come to transcend regular reality. One's economic status follows from success in the game world: Ash can eat real food; others must eat government slop. Even clothing and housing seem to not matter to people- maximizing life in the game is all that's valued.

In the heart of anyone who has become a passionate player in today's simple virtual worlds (Everquest, UO, etc.) is that desire to get to the highest level, where you are god-like. Ash is no different, and the story unfolds as she tries to make her way to the highest level: Class Real.

Oshii's conclusion has two opposing interpretations to the viewer: a warning, but not to people today, but to those who see this film in 20 years (or whenever VR comes to devalue to the real world). A hope, that virtual reality will be a kind of salvation, where one can become a kind of meta-human who has broken free of the ugly real world.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

A superb movie

10/10
Author: Osoph from Hannover, Germany
29 July 2002

Wow. This is one of the best movies I've seen over the last few years. Something completely different in content as well as in style.

See it for content. The story really is bizarre but interesting to follow through the movie. Don't expect to know what's going on after the first twenty minutes ;) Still, you'll get to know what it's all about; you don't have to spend 2 weeks trying to figure it out like in "Mulholland Drive".

See it for style. What I particularly liked about Avalon is the lack of "Hollywood features". The way the camera rests on certain details for a long time - reminds me of "2001" - allows the viewer to think about the meaning of all that is shown - hardly seen in any Hollywood movie lately. It also creates a really tense atmosphere. On the other side, this movie is perfect in quality and special effects. I especially liked the coloring of the pictures.

So, if you're interested in a refreshing different movie than the usual stuff you're watching at the cinema, get this movie and you will not be disappointed.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A work of art

10/10
Author: Valentina Riva from United Kingdom
5 November 2005

One of the most beautiful movies I've seen so far. The beauty of the nearly static shots juxtaposed to the high-tech special effect was sublime. I particularly liked the semplicity of the 'real world' where everything is minimalistic the room where she lives, the sounds that inhabit it, the other citizens portrayed as unnamed shadows. There is also an absence of feelings in both world. A prime example is te emotionless close up of Ash's face after receiving compliments from the Game Master for the completion of the mission. The story in itself is a fine example of how to make Matrix a more sophisticated and engaging piece. Oshii's own take on the King Arthur myth add depth to the piece. Also look out for signifies in the movie such as statues with missing heads. There is so much more to say but unfortunately I don't have enough time to cover it all. Anyway I advise anyone to see it for one of the most sensational experiences

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant

10/10
Author: demoniz from Belgium
3 May 2004

I'm going to keep this plain simple : a person that's considering this movie a boring crappy movie has a lack of artistic feeling. You are either to young or not smart/mature enough.

Sorry for the harsh words but avalon is a work of art, not seeing this says more about you then you think. The plot and entire movie is a total joy for the mind, its breathtaking how some scenes are the work of a genius, and the music gives you cold shivers from pure emotional feelings.

Don't miss this movie , if you admire art and stylish movies this will be your number one for a long time! Forget the matrix , the matrix is just a dull action movie compared to avalon.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

beautiful

10/10
Author: cheezman20
1 January 2004

i would give anything to see this on the big screen. odd, but great choice for oshii to film this in poland in polish. the visuals are great with what seems to be a lot of jeunet and caro influence as well as a real-life anime/manga style. while watching i began wondering what a sci-fi movie from j & c would be like (with an original story... not Jeunet's Alien 4). having been a game tester there were times where i was so tired that i thought i was in the game and as games are growing more and more realistic and interactive i think this is going to become more common. of course when the real world begins to fall apart more people will be playing these games and the way the movie discusses reality/gameworld/heaven is (i think) pretty accurate about how life will be. secret societies, religion, violence, reality are discussed well here and accompanied by the best original soundtrack i have heard in a long time. highly recommended.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Fantastic

10/10
Author: the_jaguar from Washington Heights
4 August 2003

This is film is an extraordinary achievement.

Mamoru Oshii, has successfully transformed virtual world and translated it so beautifully as a film image. While this film may seem incomprehensible, once you break through the shell (no pun intended) this film was incredibly rich.

The problem is that a film critic or a layperson will easily dismiss this film as another 'video game film' or an crappy action film. The game references are numerous enough and may not make sense to the uninitiated.

The problem for gamers is that this film is essentially about personal transcendance, as is the quest for the grail that the title implies. Not really about good or bad, it's about searching for transcendence in a virtual space.

This film isn't like any other I've ever seen. While the Wachowski brothers lean on Hong Kong and H.R.Geiger to inform their visual space in 'The Matrix', Oshii instead goes for something of a cross between Jeunet and Caro in 'Delicatessen' and the work of Tarkovsky. And while 'the matrix' relies heavily on dialogue to discuss the 'philosophy' of the film, Avalon relies on pure imagery.

It is, and probably will be for a long long time, the most interesting movie about a video game ever made. Now the only problem is getting your hands on this film.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Beautifully Simple, and stunningly Unique

10/10
Author: Ladydeath from Vatican City
7 May 2003

"In a future world, young people are increasingly becoming addicted to an illegal (and potentially deadly) battle simulation game called Avalon. When Ash, a star player, hears of rumors that a more advanced level of the game exists somewhere, she gives up her loner ways and joins a gang of explorers. Even if she finds the gateway to the next level, will she ever be able to come back to reality? Or does she really want to?

I couldn't agree more with those in their comments say that it's very wrong to compare this film to for example The Matrix. Matrix can't even get close. Matrix is a film for the flesh, Avalon is a film for the mind. It's tells the true story in a world were one is bored of the ordinary life, and start seeking deeper into world of games, virtual reality. But, are we ever happy? are we ever satisfied? Ash is not happy, until she encounters a level so real, it could be.. real..

I feel this film tells us that, reality is in the end, what we really want.

Have you ever played any online games like MUSH, MUD, Counter Strike, Ultima online? What if those games were to be real once? would you play, and be happy? or would you reach for reality, in a game?

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