I've had to have a think
about this review a bit more than usual when reviewing a DVD. What do you do
when a DVD is so good that you know that you must get the next one to find out
more, yet are not provided enough information to reach a conclusion with just
the one disc? That's the problem I am faced with and thus the score on the
I based the review on
this disc by itself and if we are lucky enough to go through the whole series,
I will then give a score for the whole tale. Now on with the review.
Last Exile is the superb
tale of a retro futuristic world caught up in a war. There are three main
groups fighting in the sky in huge armadas of sky ships. Whilst we don't get
to know too much about them in this disc, they tie into the overall plot.
That's the problem with this first edition though, there are so many loose
ends as they attempt to introduce all the elements of the storyline into the
This is one of the first
times that I've wanted to score what is an incomplete feature so highly. Why?
Last Exile is intriguing to say the least with a gorgeous animation style to
kill for. We just aren't really told anything, just quickly shown people and
events. We do get to meet our two main characters (I think) Claus and Lavie,
two fifteen year old couriers who seem to unwittingly get caught up in
something much larger than them.
There are four episodes
on this disc and this is where the confusion really kicked in as the first two
introduced us to Claus and Lavie and the battle that was taking place in the
sky, then the third all of a sudden takes up to a race that they are flying
in. Then in the last they are protecting a young girl who needs to be escorted
on a seven star mission (the most dangerous type of mission at all - they are
rated by stars, one being the easiest and so on). Just when you think that
they've lost you again, one of the captains of the battling armadas shows up,
thereby tying in the first episode but leaving you on such a cliffhanger that
you will kick yourself that you don't have the second disc to put in
Are you still with me on
this? Good as I highly recommend this disc once you get the chance to buy the
second installment at the same time as it's too much of a tease otherwise. For
those who are curious to know, my first impulse was to score this disc between
9/10 - 9.5/10. It will be interesting to see what happens in other
installments, however based on this first DVD, I did have to take a breath and
realise that as a single disc, it's not the strongest storytelling experience,
however as a whole series, it promises to be something very special.
Putting it simply; I
can't wait to review the next disc in the series.
The disc is shown in
16:9 and looks absolutely beautiful with no errors on the disc and all colours
being sharp and vibrant. It appears that Team Gonzo mixed computer animation
with traditional work to great effect.
The soundtrack is a bit disappointing as I think that it
would have enhanced the feature a lot more to be fully surround sound as there
are dogfights and races, all of which would have benefited from a full
surround mix. What we are left with is a very strong Dolby Digital 2.0
soundtrack that sounds great and it may just be a bit picky of me, but the
subject matter lends itself to the surround experience. The theme song and
music is great.
The extras on this disc are pretty limited however I would
strongly recommend that you look at character profiles to get a bit more of a
feel for the characters. There's not a lot of info there however it's more
than we get told during the feature.
The extra trailer is of another series that I am currently
enjoying called , all other
extras don't really enhance the viewing experience anymore than what you have
Last Exile 01:
First Move Features