Love, Death & Robots: Beyond the Aquila Rift

Love, Death & Robots: Beyond the Aquila Rift ★★

You know how I like it. Sultry and slow.

Had no real interest in watching any of these shorts in this Netflix series, but at the request of a friend, I will at least be checking out a select few of them, starting with this one. It sure does (mostly) look neat. I find it intriguing that we are now at a place with CGI where not only settings and props but human characters, their skin and their other features, can have this much attention and detail put into them. One has to wonder if there will come a point where it can be used not only to digitally enhance actors in blockbusters, but to create entire individuals who don't exist in reality but could naturally blend into a live-action setting. The uncanny valley's final challenge is humans, and that may be a feat soon attained. Not quite there yet, and you can have all of the impressive animation you want with a project, but there should be something going on behind the scenes. If you've ever seen The Matrix or are even familiar with its plot, unless you're high out of your mind, I don't really see how this could disturb or even offer base level intrigue to science fiction fans. This is mostly just poor short filmmaking beyond that baseline aesthetic. Poor voice acting, weird decisions with the length of certain scenes (One must wonder if the end goal of this really is just to have photo-realistic T&A to ogle at for a couple of minutes.), and there is a somewhat fascinating creature design, but that again connects more to the look instead of what's in the inside. That inside is hollow as can be, if you ask me. The creators of Love, Death & Robots have said that the series takes influence from the loose structure and boundary-pushing nature of Heavy Metal. As someone who very recently watched that film for the first time, even when I was blasted on alcohol watching it, I can tell with sincerity and clarity that Heavy Metal has more substance going on with its aesthetic and genre-blending in one of its fingernails than this short has in its whole being. Maybe there's more to offer in other shorts with the series, but as a first taste, this was a poor start.

4/10

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