Jason Axinn (director)
24 August 2019 (released)
24 August 2019
It is well acknowledged that in animation for some reason almost anything goes; the levels of violence and language can be pushed that much further. Family Guy has been playing that card for years. To Your Last Death is an animation that gleefully exploits that freedom for exploitation though with an intricate storyline driving it.
William Shatner’s familiar tones narrate the early section as the film opens with the outcome of a bloody murder. Questioned by the police about the killings Miriam (Dani Lennon) is visited by the Gamemaster (Morena Baccarin) and informed that she is part of game which intergalactic beings are gambling on.
The Gamemaster lays out the rules, which can change at any time merely on a whim. The result is a dazzlingly complicated film with excellent voice characterisation from the cast and hyper violence.
As to the rest of the plot all that is required for you to know is that Cyrus DeKalb (Ray Wise) a very wealthy magnate has called his four estranged children (including Miriam) to see him about his estate and his health. It’s a surprise to the siblings who don’t get on with him and aren’t exactly on great terms amongst themselves. The meeting is fractious to say the least. What follows is a blistering ride of twisting storylines, violence and cruelty that is at times gratuitous in the extreme. Having said that writers Tanya Klein and Jim Cirile haven’t skimped on the characters giving them some depth too.
Directed by Jason Axinn, the animation is hand drawn and looks beautiful very much in the style of a comic or graphic novel. That could be why it is not the freest flowing you’ll and jars a bit. But that really is nit-picking for what is overall a very entertaining film.