In the Aftermath
After Rabbit / In the Aftermath: Angels Never Sleep
USA / Japan 1988
Tom Dugan, Yasuyoshi Tokuma (animation) for New World
directed by Carl Colpaert, Mamoru Oshii (animation)
starring Tony Markes, Rainbow Dolan, Filiz Tully, Kenneth McCabe, Kurtiss J. Tews, Edward Holm, Bryan Ellenburg, Mike Hickam, Ian Ruskin (voice), Katie Leigh (voice)
screenplay by Carl Colpaert, music by Anthony Moore, animation sequences taken from the film Angel's Egg, screenplay by Mamoru Oshii, based on a story by Mamoru Oshii, Yoshitaka Amano, Yoshihiro Kanno, chief animator: Yasuhiro Nakura
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In a weird parallel world, angel Jonathan (voiced by Ian Ruskin) hands
an egg to his little sister (voiced by Katie Leigh), to go to earth and
find someone worthy enough to hand them the egg as a symbol of hope. But
the little sister doesn't think she's up to the task - and indeed, she
breaks the egg, but fortunately her brother is forgiving and hands her
Meanwhile on a post-apocalyptic earth where breathable
air's a rarity, Frank (Tony Markes) and Goose (Kenneth McCabe) have
started a search among the ruins of a city for pretty much anything they
could need for survival ... but they only run into a psycho soldier who
takes both their oxygen tanks, kills Goose and leaves Frank gravely
wounded - which is about when the little angel (in the live action scenes
played by Rainbow Dolan) descends to earth. She's immediately repulsed by
the barren planet, but sees compassion in Frank, so she sees to it that
he's saved by Sarah (Filiz Tully), a doctor who inhabits an operating
theatre, which is pretty much the only room with fresh air within miles.
But our angel observes them for quite a bit before she decides whether to
hand them her egg ...
Basically, this film is live action
sequences built around the Japanese anime Tenshi no Tamago/Angel's
Egg from 1985, a rather stunning film in itself that really didn't
need to be augmented with "new scenes" that totally changed the
story of the original. But that said, if you now expect something of the
likes of a schlocky Richard
Harrison Ninja movie, you couldn't be more wrong, as this
pieced together live action/animation hybrid is actually a very poetic
piece of cinema, one that's high on atmosphere and is of an eerie beauty
throughout, that has its sentimental as well as surreal scenes, and that
tells a story that's utterly unique and easily transcends the usual
post-apocalyptic genre fodder.
Quite an unusual ride to be sure.