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Final fantasy: The spirits within

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

The year is 2065 and Earth is under siege. A meteor has crashed onto the planet, unleashing millions of alien creatures which roam the Earth. Decimating field and city alike, these predators are threatening to extinguish all life on the planet.

The survivors of the initial onslaught have retreated to barrier cities built to protect the inhabitants of Earth from the marauding invaders. But the few cities around the globe are in decline and time is running out. Yet, the spirit of humankind is resilient and embodied in the brilliant and beautiful Doctor Aki Ross (Ming-Na). Determined and capable, Aki strives as earth's last hope against extinction.

Fighting both the enemy within and the scheming General Hein (James Woods), who would destroy the Earth in order to save it, Aki valiantly pursues her final fantasy.

Theatrical propaganda posters

Final fantasy: The spirits within image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film animation science fiction future game supernatural invasion

Persons of interest

  • Ming-Na .... Doctor Aki Ross
  • Alec Baldwin .... Captain Gray Edwards
  • Ving Rhames .... Sergeant Ryan Whitaker
  • Steve Buscemi .... Officer Neil Fleming
  • Peri Gilpin .... Officer Jane Proudfoot
  • Donald Sutherland .... Doctor Sid
  • James Woods .... General Hein
  • Matt McKenzie .... Major Elliot
  • Hironobu Sakaguchi .... Storywriter
  • Al Reinert .... Screenwriter
  • Jeff Vintar .... Screenwriter
  • Jack Fletcher .... Screenwriter
  • Moto Sakakibara .... Director
  • Hironobu Sakaguchi .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Secret Agent Acid Thunder

Theatrical report

I will start by saying that Final fantasy: The spirits within demonstrates the next stage in the evolution of animation. You begin with flicking pages in your notebook at school, advance to photographing a few hundred thousand hand painted-pictures, move on to painting them with pixels, continue to drawing a few thousand pictures then letting the computer fill in the gaps and now, at last, creating everything on the computer using 3-d maps, lighting, motion and dirt.

Dirt is important because it's the biggest difference between reality and traditional animation. There's neither the time nor the money to draw in every little twitch, swish, mole, scuff and snort with traditional methods, not to mention the fact that it takes huge amounts of talent and persistence. With three-dimensional modelling and a large enough rendering farm, you just tell the computer that Aki has a freckle on the side of her nose and the freckle algorithm paints one in whenever the camera can see that side of her nose, adjusted for angle, light and motion, one frame at a time.

The story was pretty lame and the dialogue was boring because the script was badly written but I'm not going to trash Final fantasy because you aren't going to pay money to see it on the basis of story, dialogue and script. You're going to pay your hard earned money (plus GST) to see the fancy new special effects that can be produced by geeks with the right software. The upside is that you won't be asking for your money back. There is so much detail that sometimes you don't know where to look.

Final fantasy: The spirits within is more like a cinematic version of the game than anything else, in high resolution, DVD quality, surround sound God mode. See it to believe.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Disc: 2 x single side, dual layer discs
  • Picture: Widescreen (1.85:1/16:9 enhanced)
  • Languages: English, Spanish
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, Portuguese
  • Blue tinted box
  • Holographic foiled outer box
  • Ground-breaking 2 disc set with over 10 hours of entertainment
  • Disc 1:
    • Commentary by co-director Moto Sakakibara and crew (in Japanese with sub-titles)
    • Commentary by Andy Jones (animation director), Christopher Capp (editor) and Tani Kunitake (staging director)
    • Isolated track of music score with commentary by composer Elliot Goldenthal
    • Rough cut selects - the process of creating Final fantasy, see the entire feature in various stages of production (optional commentary)
    • Original movie trailers
    • Picture disc
  • Disc 2:
    • Deleted scenes
    • Alternate opening sequence (optional commentary)
    • The making of "Final fantasy" - 30 minute documentary with interactive link-outs to additional featurettes on characters design and development
    • Build your own scene - interactive feature: you become the editor and create a scene from the film
    • Character files
    • 12 featurettes focusing on the film's design including conceptual art for props, vehicles, costumes and characters
    • Toys and licensing featurettes
    • 10 additional featurettes that include a look at characters, props, model making, the Square Pictures crew, vehicles and more!
    • DVD-ROM features: complete script, virtual tour of Square Pictures studio where the film was made, screensavers and more!
    • Bonus movie trailers
    • Picture disc

Security censorship classification

M (Adult themes, supernatural theme, low level violence)

Surveillance time

102 minutes (1:42 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 26 July 2001
DVD rental: 21 November 2001

Cinema surveillance images

Final fantasy: The spirits within image
Final fantasy: The spirits within image
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