Blame! Would lead you to believe that Netflix is testing out the possibility of expanding this to a series but wants to see their subscribers’ response is first.
In a dystopian future, after humanity has lost control of the machines they created, we are introduced to a small village on the brink of starvation. However, thanks to one traveler named Killy, who is searching for a human being with the net terminal gene, which allows a human to control machines [note]Which was lost a long time ago thanks to a contagion[/note], they are saved.
Then, when brought back to the village, he takes part in the discovery of this being named Cibo. A human whose mind was seemingly placed into a robot over 1900 years ago. But, before she died, and found herself isolated below the village, she was on the brink of discovering a synthetic net terminal gene. Leading to the heart of the story which is Cibo, Killy, and the members of the village, tracking down the device Cibo needs to perhaps reclaim the outside world for humanity. Though between the camera like watchtowers and the safeguards [note]Also known as executioners[/note], they call upon, the journey is long, with massive amounts of sacrifice, and traumatizing for those who do get to survive.
The Action Sequences
The battles against the safeguards and this being known as Sana-kan contain the only real highlights of the movie. For not only are they visually stunning, but also violent. To the point, you have to wonder if humanity may be on its last leg and we are about to watch said leg get cut off.
On The Fence
Not a Huge Amount of Backstory, But It Does Leave You Intrigued
I know, I know, “If you want to know what happened, read the manga” I get that. However, like said with Gantz:O, I’m under the impression that adaptations serve two purposes: The first being to bring a story to life, outside of the flat pages of a book, and to also drive up the sales of the source material and merchandise. Now, while the movie does bring the manga to life [note]Disclaimer: I didn’t read it[/note], I wouldn’t say it inspires you to want to become a fan and purchase the source material, get a key chain, or what have you.
Which isn’t at all to imply Blame! Is bad. More so, it just feels very bare bones. As if, because it was “Visually Impossible,” as the Netflix trailer states, they decided to stick to the minimum amount of story needed to get the point across. Meaning, when it comes to the characters, you get only what you need. You get a name, what is their immediate concern, which is a lack of food, and that’s it. Outside of Cibo, no character is given any significant sort of backstory. Making it rather hard, in general, to connect with the characters, and also difficult, in the beginning, to really be able to differentiate between one villager to another.
Yet, despite this criticism, it is hard to not want to see and understand more of this world. From why were the safeguards made in the first place, much less programmed to discriminate against non-net terminal gene having humans to why the builder robots aren’t violent? Outside of the characters, we are left with a massive amount of questions which really push the idea that if this is a hit with Netflix’s users, they may expand on the story.
Overall: Mixed (Divisive)
While the foundation of world building is done well, unfortunately, there isn’t much development from there. We learn little things about characters like they have a sister, they were a chief scientist centuries ago, and things of that nature, but there is nothing given to develop an emotional connection. But, overall, what Blame! Appears to be is a pilot or pitch. That is, rather than a summary of or even a major plot from the source material.
Hence the mixed label for while there is a desire to see the story continue, if this is all that will be given then I find little reason for anyone to check this out.