In 2142, mankinds ecological rape of the planet has sparked a global catastrophe, with survivors living within Ecoban, a city whose energy is provided through the exploitation of proletariat diggers. Jay (Cavadini), a young female trooper, must decide
For years, korea has been the secret powerhouse of global animation production, working quietly away behind the scenes, providing support for American, European and Japanese studios. But when it comes to homegrown product, theres been a reluctance to move far away from the narrative or stylistic conventions of Japanese anime.
To an extent, this is true of Sky Blue and its tale of an ecologically ravaged future-world and elite survivors, exploiting the mass underclass for their labour. Throw in a young female lead who must confront her past as her childhood friend instigates bloody rebellion, plus a love triangle for good measure, and this veers dangerously close to anime cliché.
But the weaknesses of the plotting are forgiveable when the visuals are so luxurious. Combining 2-D and 3-D animation elements with the occasional model effect, Sky Blue virtually invents a new aesthetic, a dazzling celebration of old and new crafts that combines with a hauntingly evocative score to play out like some exotic Fantasia update. It will certainly appeal to hardcore animation fans but, on the strength of its looks alone, deserves to find a wider audience.
The plot may play second fiddle to the visuals, but theres no denying that these visuals are to die for.