Released in 1987. Earlier work by Masamune Shiro, perhaps better known these days as the creator of Ghost in the Shell or the less successful Appleseed.

This had the honor of being the first anime I saw, at the age of 13. I was enthralled - mainly by the possibilities of animation in the hands of an adult imagination. Until I saw this, I had thought cartoon characters were supposed to whack each other with mallets, not disembowel each other with their fists. Now I know better.

It's a modestly interesting take on the berserk, homicidal robot story, set in a Blade Runner-esque future. Shiro shows a wonderful attention to visual and thematic detail, which shines through what is basically the japanese equivalent of Terminator - another wonderful berserk robot B-movie. And if you think about it, there are actually a number of similarities between his and James Cameron's work.

Two androids are hijacked in transit and crash in a park. They happen to be carrying a "test program" that involves hunting down and killing the (cute 16 year old) daughter of their (whiny, ridiculous, cyclonic-eyed) inventor. The military is pretty sharp, and they manage to stop one of them fairly quickly (too bad for the 40-50 guys that get lasered, karate-chopped in half, and fragmentation grenaded in the process), but the other one escapes, and trails the anime chick to a downtown cafe, where a rogue journalist who happened onto the story decides to try to save her life, and in a fairly dramatic and well-paced finale, does.

If you have the choice, skip the dubbed version and go for the subtitles. The voice acting is awful.

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