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Avalon (2001)

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0:51 | Trailer

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In a dystopian world, a woman spends her time playing an illegal and dangerous game, hoping to find meaning in her world.

Director:

Mamoru Oshii

Writer:

Kazunori Itô (screenplay)
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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Malgorzata Foremniak ... Ash
Wladyslaw Kowalski ... Game Master
Jerzy Gudejko ... Murphy
Dariusz Biskupski ... Bishop
Bartlomiej Swiderski Bartlomiej Swiderski ... Stunner (as Bartek Swiderski)
Katarzyna Bargielowska ... Receptionist
Alicja Sapryk Alicja Sapryk ... Gill
Michal Breitenwald ... Murphy of Nine Sisters
Zuzanna Kasz Zuzanna Kasz ... Ghost
Adam Szyszkowski ... Player A
Krzysztof Szczerbinski Krzysztof Szczerbinski ... Player B (as Krszysztof Szczerbinski)
Marek Stawinski Marek Stawinski ... Player C
Jaroslaw Budnik Jaroslaw Budnik ... Cooper (voice)
Andrzej Debski Andrzej Debski ... Cusinart (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Elzbieta Towarnicka Elzbieta Towarnicka ... Soloist at Philharmonic
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Storyline

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? Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Dare to enter a world of future videogames


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

Japan | Poland

Language:

Polish

Release Date:

20 January 2001 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Авалон See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital EX

Color:

Color | Black and White (Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

All military vehicles and helicopters were borrowed from the Polish army for free. See more »

Goofs

The screen showing Ash's points after the first battle lists as a Gotten Item an SVD 7.65x56R. The SVD Dragonov is a Russian sniper rifle which uses 7.62x54R ammunition. See more »

Quotes

Ash: Sorry I messed up the room.
Game Master: Don't worry. Everyone has days like that.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Assault Girls (2009) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

Where Does The Heart Freeze Sooner? or: A Cybercar Named Desire
14 January 2003 | by schogger13See all my reviews

There is an interesting parallel between The Matrix and Avalon. The first is heavily based on Manga/Animee style, in visual dynamics much more than in pace as well as storytelling, the latter IS an Animee movie without the animations - in fact, Avalon is a VERY typical Oshii film in every other aspect going.

It's slow. It has to be. It either bores you stiff or chains you to a subtle, incredibly intense way of visual storytelling - takes you back to a time when the attention span as well as the will required to catch a drift - to hold a thought and work on it - lived longer than a few seconds.

On the surface, this movie is what one could call a cyberpunk poem. For that alone it already claims a unique position amongst whatever one might want to compare it to at first glance. A chillingly dark and detailed as well as beautifully crafted ballad of a heroine seeking much more than sense between realities and illusions. She seeks the home we all desperately try to cling to in belief for lack of knowledge.

As always in Oshii's movies, one has to be prepared to be drawn into the unsettling realm between suffocating rules of conduct and complete uncertainty to get at the tiny grain of hope hovering so painfully close to the wheels that try to grind you.

The dialogue doesn't tell us much. In fact, the more wordy the explanations get, the more they deflect us from what we see and feel. That's pretty much what Ash has to cope with as well to find the way to HER reality as well as illusion.

To call the acting understated, slow and painfully introverted would be an understatement in itself. To call it bad for that would be the most idiotic conclusion. Malgorzata Foremniak (Ash) is a true discovery. The intensity and sheer impact she can give to 'silence' alone makes her the ideal Oshii actress. There is no empty move, no hollow gesture, no shallow expression in her entire performance. Quite an accomplishment if one keeps in mind that Ash leads a depressingly empty, hollow as well as shallow life on the surface.

It's an equally depressing fact that this incredible Polish actress will stay in obscurity as far as the billion dollar mainstream movie world is concerned.

The cinematography and lighting by Grzegorz Kedzierski is nothing short of exquisite. So is Barbara Novak's production design. Budget-wise, this is a B-Movie, but they all turned that restriction into a virtue.

One last praise has to go to the composer as well as the musicians. The title track 'Avalon' alone, a grand piece for orchestra, choir and soprano, is nothing short of a masterpiece.

As I said, this movie is a poem. Take a quiet place, wind down from the hassle of your day and let yourself sink into illusions which might even show the occasional glint of YOUR reality.

* 10 out of 10

Schogger13


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