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Appleseed Ex Machina (2007)

Appurushido: Ekusu makina (original title)
With Brialeos convalescing after a mission, Deunan is assigned a new and remarkably familiar partner as a strange wave of terrorist attacks plague Olympus.


Shinji Aramaki


Shirow Masamune (characters) (as Masamune Shirow), Kiyoto Takeuchi (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Ai Kobayashi Ai Kobayashi ... Deunan Knute (voice)
Kôichi Yamadera ... Brialeos Hecatombcales (voice)
Yûji Kishi Yûji Kishi ... Tereus (voice)
Kong Kuwata Kong Kuwata ... Aeacus (voice)
Shinpachi Tsuji Shinpachi Tsuji ... Commander Lance (voice)
Gara Takashima Gara Takashima ... Athena (voice)
Rei Igarashi Rei Igarashi ... Nike (voice)
Rica Fukami Rica Fukami ... Yoshino (voice)
Takaya Hashi Takaya Hashi ... Dr. Kestner (voice)
Miyuki Sawashiro ... Hitomi (voice)
Yasuyuki Kase Yasuyuki Kase ... Yoshitsune (voice)
Takaya Kuroda Takaya Kuroda ... Arges (voice)
Naoko Kouda Naoko Kouda ... Dr. Xander (voice)
Atsushi Imaruoka Atsushi Imaruoka ... (voice)
Ken Yamaguchi Ken Yamaguchi ... (voice)


When a paramilitary task force called E.S.W.A.T. and its operations in the year 2133 Olympus, a futuristic utopia where humans, cyborgs, and bio-engineered human beings called "Bioroids" are attempting to live in perfect harmony. However, a series of random terrorist attacks perpetrated by cyborgs and humans alike threaten to throw Olympus into total chaos. As it turns out, these humans and machines have come under the influence of an unknown electronic signal that hacks into their nervous systems and they then become the unwilling servants of a malevolent computerized entity. Thrown into the action is the plucky female E.S.W.A.T. warrior Deunan Knute and her cyborg lover/partner Briareos as they investigate these bizarre occurrences with the other members of their unit. Things become complicated when a bioroid named Tereus, who resembles Briareous in his human form, joins their unit and threatens to come between their relationship. But these three must put aside their differences to ... Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Where there's despair, hope comes in threes: a Human, a Cyborg and a Bioroid.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for action/violence and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


A fan of the original Appleseed movie, Miuccia Prada jumped at the chance to design some of the costumes. See more »


Briareos: I'll always protect you, even if the world comes to an end.
Deunan Knute: I know you will.
See more »


Featured in Troldspejlet: Episode #40.6 (2008) See more »


Performed by Ryuichi Sakamoto & Haruomi Hosono & Yukihiro Takahashi
Courtesy of commmons/Avex Records
See more »

User Reviews

John Woo Needs To Be Stopped
16 March 2008 | by ebossertSee all my reviews

I've never been a huge fan of John Woo. I think Hard Boiled (1992) is one of the greatest action films ever made, and I liked The Killer (1989), A Better Tomorrow (1986), and Bullet In the Head (1990), but we need to be honest with ourselves and recognize that this guy sold his soul to Hollywood in the mid-1990s and hasn't made a great film since 1992.

He has, however, completely destroyed a sequel to one of the best American movies of recent memory (Mission Impossible) by over-Hollywoodizing a uniquely non-Hollywood film made by Hollywood. That's quite an ironic feat that he should be particularly ashamed of. Now we have Appleseed: Ex Machina (2007) to add to the list of Woo-ish debacles over the past 16 years.

This sequel to the exceptional anime drops the ball in a number of respects, yet still proves to be a marginally entertaining movie. The most obvious fault is that numerous events are near copies of science fiction movies from the West, thus making this endeavor much too conventional for a Japanese anime. In addition, the storyline wasn't as well-conceived as the original. Luckily, this movie has just enough positives to earn a watch. The protagonists are very likable characters, the plot is engaging, and the visuals are very good. The action scenes don't reach the levels of exoticism or quality of the original, but they are still moderately entertaining. In the end this is a very flawed picture that will only satisfy anime action junkies that can look around some mediocre elements. I'd give it a 6/10 compared to an 8/10 for the original.

Now, there were some very specific Woo-ish aspects that really annoyed me. First and foremost are the doves. Yes, there are heaping amounts of flying doves in this Japanese anime film! Why the hell is John Woo so obsessed with doves? Yeah, they provide some ironic symbolism during action scenes, but using them to the degree that he does I have no doubts that he touches himself to pictures of doves when he's alone at night. And the fact that he uses these little birdies in almost every one of his movies proves to be almost as annoying as Rob Zombie's habitual use of white trash folk in his movies. Yes, it's that annoying.

But wait. Maybe I'm jumping to conclusions regarding just how much influence Woo had in this watchable (yet severely disappointing) sequel. So I fired up the Special Features option on the DVD menu and watched the 16-minute "Making Of" featurette that focuses specifically on John Woo's influence as a producer. It provided some much needed information regarding just how far this has-been shell of a director has fallen. Let me run down some of the statements made by the Japanese director and producers of this film:

"This is the first time a big time Hollywood director has tried to tackle Japanese Anime."

So Woo isn't even recognized as a director of Chinese cinema anymore. How quaint. No one in this "Making Of" feature even mentioned his Chinese filmography.

"Japanese producers wanted to expand into the Western market and saw that working with John Woo would be a good match."

Nice. If your name is dropped by someone as the foremost expert in Hollywoodization, would you really take that as a compliment? Man, this guy has really hit rock bottom.

"John brought his years of experience in Hollywood to it."

Well, he certainly brought all of the negatives of Hollywood cinema to this production. That was obvious from watching the movie. How many times do you see a Japanese Anime film copy scenes from I Robot and The Matrix Revolutions? Yes, it's really, really pathetic.

The most enlightening statement was with regards to the preliminary Japanese storyboards.

"John took a look at it and came up with some really great notes."

What was particularly hilarious about this statement is that on-screen you see John Woo's head shaking in a disapproving, almost disgusted manner while watching the initial storyboards. It's almost like he's saying to himself, "This is way too Japanese for an American audience. We need more slow-mo shots and conventional elements to reach a wider audience and make more money." Nice job Johnny boy.

Director Shinji Aramaki apparently conceived Ex Machina to be nothing more than a tribute to Woo's work. He says:

"We devised the Cathedral scene before John showed up to pay homage to his work."

It's really too bad that Aramaki was so accommodating to implementing all of Woo's ideas into the film. It effectively crippled a movie that should have been as good as the original.

I hate to say it, but John Woo is a no-talent has-been who has only harmed the international film industry since making Hard Boiled in 1992. I have no problems with him making tripe in America. Heck, that's what American cinema is for. But don't you DARE to take your new-found money-grubbing mediocrity to Japanese anime.

Someone needs to stop this guy before he attempts to wreck another Asian movie.

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Release Date:

20 October 2007 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Appleseed Ex Machina See more »


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital (in selected theatres)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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