Animation: Weak
Depth: Weak
Design: Fair
Characters: Weak
Story: Bad

Type: movie

Vintage: 1999


» action
» sci-fi
Verdict: Reviews @ Archen's Anime Page


Summary: >

In the year 2100, Bayside city is a hub of smuggling. A freelance organization helping police the city called Angel Arms has nabbed a pretty big catch: a big time weapons smuggler. As someone who knows too much, he's become an assassination target. When military grade machines show up to do the dirty work, even Angel Arms may be out of their league. This job will be especially hard for Alisa, as their leader happens to be her (apparently not) dead ex-lover.

Thoughts: >

I've decided I'm going to be pretty hard on this one. I'd be lenient on any one of the many problems of Gundress, however it's not one problem; it's the combination of failures which makes it a real chore to watch.

In anime, the equivalent of an "action movie" is a matter of visual appeal, although the story usually fairs better. Gundress on the other hand seems bent on truly reproducing the brain dead Hollywood action movie experience with a pathetic plot, but completely fails with crap animation that is sub par even by TV budget standards. The excuse of "at least it looks cool" doesn't apply here.

The sci-fi appeal isn't there either. It has giant robots, but that's about it. Much of Bayside city is in ruins, but little is said about the earthquake that (I guess) caused it, the reconstruction, or how people were coping with that. I'm not going to say Gundress doesn't have a futuristic environment in the backdrop, however it almost goes out of its way to ignore it. If this were a half hour OVA that didn't have time to explore that, it would be fine. Gundress however instead stretches a full hour and a half not doing much of anything (noteworthy). It's the length that makes it so painful.

Also the climax is a showdown involving floating in cyberspace. I honestly think the studio thought this was clever.

The DVD has an interesting feature: the making of Gundress. If you've ever seen a disaster and wondered "what were they thinking?": well here you go. People working on it actually say things like "we wondered what kind of anime we'd like to see". "We wanted to make X", "We tried to do X". The explanations are surreal because that's totally NOT the anime they made. Gundress at least has a dub which is okay.

While I rate this anime poorly, it at least isn't purposely objectionable. Exempting decent voice acting, Gundress is basically a huge failure in execution in all areas. A waste of time to watch.

Quote: >

Silvia: A stray dog is always a stray dog; always alone.

Screen Caps: >

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reviewed by archen in 2016