6.9/10
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81 user 105 critic

Suchîmubôi (2004)

In 1860s Britain, a boy inventor finds himself caught in the middle of a deadly conflict over a revolutionary advance in steam power.

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(as Katsuhiro Ohtomo)

Writers:

, (as Katsuhiro Ohtomo)

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
James Ray Steam (voice)
Masane Tsukayama ...
Eddî Suchîmu-hakase (voice)
Katsuo Nakamura ...
Dr. Lloyd Steam (voice)
Manami Konishi ...
Scarlett O'Hara (voice)
Kiyoshi Kodama ...
Robert Stephenson (voice)
Ikki Sawamura ...
David (voice)
Susumu Terajima ...
Freddie (voice)
Osamu Saka ...
Army General (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Keiko Aizawa ...
Mrs. Steam (voice)
Rosalind Ayres ...
(voice)
...
Alfred Smith (voice)
...
Robert Stephenson (voice)
...
David (voice)
...
(voice)
...
(voice)

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Storyline

Rei is a young inventor living in the U.K. in the middle of the 19th century. Shortly before the first ever World Expo, a marvelous invention called the "Steam Ball", behind which a menacing power is hidden, arrives at his door from his grandfather Roid in the U.S. Meanwhile the nefarious Ohara Foundation has sent men to acquire theSteam Ball so that they can use its power towards their own illicit ends. Written by Bruce Osborne <saitoh-hajime@neo.rr.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for action violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

18 March 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Steamboy  »

Box Office

Budget:

JPY 2,127,519,898 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$534,095 (Japan) (16 July 2004)

Gross:

$410,388 (USA) (15 April 2005)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (theatrical)

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In both the Japanese and English (dubbed) versions, Ray's voice is provided by a young woman, which is common practice in casting roles for boys ages 15 and under. See more »

Quotes

Jason: You! Brat!
James Ray Steam: You could hurt someone like that, and my name is not brat!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Under the end credits, images of future events in the lives of the characters are shown. See more »

Connections

Featured in Katsuhiro Otomo Cinema Anthology (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
An extraordinarily inventive depiction of an alternative 'steampunk' Victorian era, but plotwise, it's as vapid as anything produced by Jerry Bruckheimer.
17 December 2004 | by (Melbourne, Australia) – See all my reviews

The latest film from the director of Akira, Katsuhiro Ôtomo, is a pacy thriller anime set in an alternate 1850s London, in the middle of the industrial age. Rai Steam is the third in a line of engineer inventors who dreams of going to the first ever Great Exhibition – when his grandfather unexpectedly returns from the United States with an new invention, the steamball. About the size of a bowling ball, the steamball is a source of immense, self-renewing power and the people who funded the invention want it back at any price. Rai escapes on his steam-powered unicycle, and the race is on. On the way, he encounters a steam-powered cyborg, a giant steam-powered "Death Star" and a feisty, economic rationalist sidekick, the Gone With The Wind-inspired Miss Scarlett (Manami Konishi).

While the plot is nothing new – and very much in the Hollywood thriller style, the inventiveness of the world Steamboy is set in is exhilarating. Imagine steam-powered individual submarines, flying machines and more, all drawn in painstaking detail – with thousands of cogs and wheels all impacting on each other. Although some CGI is used, most of the film's made in the traditional anime style – around 180 000 individual pictures were used to make Steamboy, and it shows.

Steamboy's a rip-roaring 'steampunk' piece of entertainment, complete with an insane despot who plans to take over the world. Although it's strange to see a film set in London where all the (Anglo) characters are speaking Japanese, it's best not to take Steamboy too seriously. Comic relief is provided by Miss Scarlett and Rai's grandfather, Loyd Steam (Katsuo Nakamura). Loyd Steam also speaks for the natural order, something that's often found in Japanese anime and was inspired by both the animist former national religion, Shinto, and the WWII atomic bombings. Unlike Miyazaki's Princess Mononoke, however, it's barely touched on here. Steamboy succeeds because of the fantastic imagination behind the animation, not for its philosophy. ***½/***** stars.


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