April 2, 2005


steamboyFrom Katsuhiro Otomo, the director of Akira, comes this apocalyptic, evils-of-technology fable set in the Steam Age: Victorian London, 1863. Otomo rages against the danger of science perverted to serve capitalistic, warmongering influences, yet at the same time he fetishistically showcases fantastic steam-powered technology. Besides the preachy moralizing, Otomo shows a disappointing misogynist streak- there are barely three speaking parts for women in the movie: The protagonist's mother gets a few lines early on, the Queen of England has one line, and the "comedy" relief is a ugly, spoiled, elitist preteen heiress who beats her Chihuahua and calls everyone 'stupid'. (Kendall Square Cinemas)