Saturday, April 17, 2010

Dante's Inferno is the anime adaptation of the game with the same name, both developed by Visceral Games. It is originally based on the first part of Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy, "The Inferno". Just like in the game, it tells the story of Dante, a war-worn christian crusader and his quest to save the soul of his betrothed, Beatrice, who was abducted by Lucifer. The story starts with Dante returning home and discovering that his family slaughtered, along with his wife, Beatrice. As he held the body of Beatrice in his arms and watched her soul goes up to heaven, Lucifer suddenly appeared and wrenched Beatrice's soul to be taken to hell instead. Enraged, Dante ran in pursuit of Lucifer in an attempt to save Beatrice, until he reached the gates of hell where he met Virgil, the poet who then became his guide in his quest. Similar to the book, Dante journeyed through the seven circles of Hell, overcoming several obstacles like the judge of the dead, King Minos, the great worm, Cerberus.

In addition to this, he even battled his corrupted and monstrous father, Alighiero and those closest to him like Francesco, Beatrice's brother and ultimately, Lucifer himself. The animation is rendered by a number of renowned animation studios such as Production I.G (Ghost in the Shell), Dong Woo (Akazukin Cha-Cha), Film Roman( Garfield and Friends) and more. Because of this, the character designs as well as the backgrounds are inconsistent. There would be scenarios wherein Dante was portrayed as a long-haired crusader while there would be parts where he wears a helm. Though the adaptation is not that bad, it is not that impressive as well and people familiar with the video game would likely prefer playing the game since there are numerous scenes omitted from the animation which are available in the video game. A good example of this is when Dante ventures off in the circle of Lust. In the game, he battles the guardian of the circle who is Cleopatra and her lover Anthony but in the animation, they are totally removed. In addition, the circle lacks the detail compared to the game in itself. A possible reason for this may be because of the sensitivity of the scenarios since the actual design of the Circle of Lust based on the game contains graphic animation as well as genitals of both genders present as background dressings. Moreover, Minos' illustration was half-done compared to how he appears in the game. In the game, he is able to maintain a regal appearance despite his monstrous form. Though he was portrayed the same way as the one in the animation, the rendering was not done with the same quality as the one which appears in the game. Other than this, the pacing of the story is a bit off in comparison to how the story was narrated in the game. It's like watching a video game without you needing to press any buttons to hack the enemies. In fact, the PS3 game rendition appears to have more depth when in comes to the story compared to the animation. But then again, this may be due to lack of screening time since the animation was not made to be a series but rather, to be a one-sitting movie which is limited. The best compliment that I could probably say about it is how impressive they were able to adapt the Divine Comedy's description of hell, and how each circle of hell looks like and the story itself. It is unique in every aspect.

Overall, as mentioned above, Dante's Inferno is not a total let down. It just so happens that the rendition and attention it deserves was not given to it. It would have been more promising if the character designs were consistent and if the animation was serialized rather than released as a movie.

Reviewed by Raven Knives


bambie said...

hi liz. i have an award for you.

you deserve this award because of all the help you're extending not only to me but to other bloggers as well. may God continue to bless you!

Liz said...

Great! Thanks a lot! I'll grab this as soon as I'm up tomorrow. Hehe. Sleep muna. Mwah!

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