Astro Boy is worth a see if there is truly nothing else more exciting on the screens.
Do not mistake this for the 1952 Osamu Tezuka production of Tensuwan Atomu alias Astro Boy which was a knee jerk reaction to post 2nd world war industrialization. This is more current and the plot is around apartheid practiced towards robots by humans. Nicolas Cage voices as Dr.Tenma of the Ministry Science in futuristic city called Metro City. He has a son called Toby with whom he has spent insufficient time bonding. The earth is now wasted and barren and this city hovers above it. Robots are assistants to humans, but treated as humans treat other humans in most conflicts, which is non-human. Dr Tenma the scientist meets up with Elefun who holds two special stones. The blue is the light side stone with good vibes and the red the dark side evil stone. The president of this city wants to take over the stones that Elefun holds to manufacture weapons.
El Presidente controls a big bad robot called the Peacemaker. Corny indeed. Using this cornily named robot he wants to blow up the surface dwellers of the city. He steals the red stone and now further chaos hovers above place of chaos. Toby the son of Dr.Tenma goes into the room while the robot is being tested and is vaporized. Tenma the father makes another robotic Toby using the blue stone who is brilliant and has incredible powers but finds that his human son was very different to his robotic son. The robot son gets thrown out of the scientist house, goes in search for solace and acceptance, meets the right dudes who can help him save the world after the usual bout of rejection by gladiators of the robotic order. He returns to do just that and becomes a super hero who is able to find reconciliation with his dad.
How good is it?
Can hold the attention of any one who is between one and half and two or three feet tall. Adults too might enjoy it provided they have something else in their hands to doodle once in a while. Not quite an ice age thriller but certainly one up more than Madagascar. Sufficiently thrilling for the animation family, but not the most thrilling made by Imagi Animation Studios of TMNT.
No violence other than the vaporizing Toby, Astro boy does a good enough job and also opens the world of manga to kids. The stones play a crucial role in the futuristic fable with the blue able to bring Toby back when all are mourning his demise.
Astor boy is well constructed and watchable, not quite blockbuster but a good start for the season.