Although much American animation is farmed out to Korean studios, ARMAGEDDON is that rare animated feature that was created and produced entirely in Korea. Although its tale of ancient alien races using Earth as a battleground owes much of its style and substance to Japanese animation,
it remains a creditable entry for a burgeoning animation industry.
In 1996 Seoul, Korea, a high school boy named Haesan is sought out by visitors from the future who inform the teen that he is the reincarnation of Delta Boy, created 4.5 billion years ago by Delta 8988, a super computer built by a race from the Andromedan nebula. The visitors, Pandora and
Tantarose, are Elkans, survivors of an advanced race that once lived on the ancient, now-sunken Pacific Ocean continent of Mu.
Haesan's protectors are killed in the act of bringing Haesan, now transformed into Delta Boy, through the time tunnel to 2150 Earth; there, the underwater kingdom of Elka is in the midst of fighting off invaders from the planet Ede.
Delta Boy allies with Queen Hera, Pandora's twin sister, and her adviser Hades, whose mission is to get Delta Boy and Hera to mate. As the Edian invasion steps up, Hades escapes with Hera and Delta boy to get final instructions from Delta 8988; the computer orders them to the dying Planet Ede to
battle Gamma 6666 and its living avatar, Commander Cassarose, who is Delta Boy's counterpart. In the final battles, Delta Boy defeats first Cassarose and then, with Hera's help, Gamma 6666 itself. The Edians give up their invasion of earth and agree to settle on the moon.
While the film owes much to Japanese animation, there are enough subtle differences of character design and visual style to give ARMAGEDDON a unique look that will please anime buffs searching for something a little different. Several sequences showcase computer animation effects to illustrate the
evolution of species on Earth, the creation of the heavens, and fleets of spaceships soaring through space. Other sequences use surrealistic imagery to represent parallel dimensions and interior dream states.
However, the film suffers from an overcomplicated plot and an abundance of technical details which fly furiously at the viewer throughout the often fast-paced action. Unlike Japanese animation, which manages to anchor the most far-fetched goings-on in some kind of everyday reality, this film
abandons its Seoul/high school setting early on and never returns, taking the action to increasingly abstract levels as it soars through great leaps of time and space. (Violence.)
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- Released: 1996
- Rating: NR
- Review: Although much American animation is farmed out to Korean studios, ARMAGEDDON is that rare animated feature that was created and produced entirely in Korea. Although its tale of ancient alien races using Earth as a battleground owes much of its style and su… (more)