GLASS FLEET VOL. 1 (ADVANCE REVIEW)

Posted On October - 1 - 2007
  RELEASED BY:   FUNIMATION ENTERTAINMENT
  ASPECT RATIO:   16:9 ANAMORPHIC WIDESCREEN
  AUDIO:  

ENGLISH DD 5.1 & 2.0 AND JAPANESE DD  2.0

  RUNNING TIME:   125 MIN
  RATING:   TV PG
  RELEASE DATE:   10/16/2007
  REVIEW DATE:   10/01/2007
  REVIEWED BY:   HOLLY ELLINGWOOD

In space there is no wind, but fleets amass, war is at hand and revolution is in the air. One tyrant was deposed only for another to take his place. Now Michel, a noble with a courageous heart and strong sense of righteousness, leads the Peoples’ Army to overthrow Vetti, the self-proclaimed Holy Emperor of the Universe. But it is a battle they may be losing. On the edge of defeat, Michel is rescued by an unlikely savior, a rogue pirate with a band of outcasts and brigands in a vessel of seeming glass and immense capabilities. Surrounded by mystery, the handsome pirate Cleo is descended from the long lost royal family, true heir to the throne, and he just might think it’s high time to get it back…

A rich new science fiction saga involving nations at war, deadly politics and amazing spaceship battles, this is the series Last Exile fans have been waiting for. Complex, nothing is as straightforward as it seems. Vetti is the villain, but his obsession with Michel has yet to be truly explained. But getting Michel is Vetti’s utmost consuming desire, one he is willing to topple any obstacle to obtain. Working political in roads to consolidate his power, Vetti has learned of a prophecy, one about an eagle with two heads, one covered in iron armor, the other love, and when they become one, will unite the universe. Vetti believes this will be him and his proposed marriage to the Pope’s daughter. However Cleo has also heard this story and now the brigand who was biding his time, rages within to cross swords with Vetti. Who will rule the galaxy is a matter of destiny, a matter of will, a matter of where the wind will choose to blow.

The anime has a flair for a period piece, almost operatic story telling within a science fiction backdrop. The characters, their clothing and mannerisms, even the way war is conducted, all harken to an Elizabethan feel. This mix of past and future makes for an immersing blend and layered story with an intriguing look and feel. Even the score has the soaring orchestral atmosphere usually found in a historic European piece and suits the look and atmosphere of Glass Fleet well. The mystery and political maneuverings amongst the various and diverse characters and groups are involving. The situations are tense, the action scenes are fantastic and the animation is a shining example of excellence.

Animated by GONZO who did Last Exile, Trinity Blood, Gankutsuou, and many other superb anime series, challenge the imagination again with stunning visuals during incredible space battles involving entire armadas of spaceships. The Glass Fleet is a fascinating design and the ship in motion is beauty to behold and thrilling to watch. It’s not just the space battles that hold the action, sword duels that are done with suspense and intense passion raise the bar of animation in this series.

EXTRAS:
Bonus features include trailers, clean opening and ending animation, and original Japanese DVD release video interviews with Tsuda Kenjiro (Cleo), Yuko Kaida (Michel), Akira Ishida (Vetti), and Kana Ueda (Eimer). This first DVD volume release comes with two options: the DVD release or the DVD with art box to collect the whole series in.

IN SUMMARY:
Glass Fleet is the anime fans of Last Exile have been waiting for. Suspenseful, fantastic animation, and a bevy of intriguing characters, this is an involving sci-fi drama series filled with action, mystery, and the thrilling journey of a young noble in search of justice.

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