If there is any movie who is and will remain relevant to the present situation of the world is none other than the anime movie ‘Akira,’ created by Otomo in the ’80s. The cyberpunk film is revolving around Neo-Tokyo, and it’s societal and political disruptions. More than 30 years old, the movie has portrayed the real-world circumstances so beautifully, which proved to be just on-point in the latter!
Otomo deserves praise for the amazing visual effects, plot execution, and the stunning wardrobe collection, including the iconic red Akira Jacket, which is still trending in the fashion world. The movie is more than what meets the eye.
From covering the societal breakdown to the inefficiency of the government, Akira still has no match. Let’s dive into the movie’s deeper meaning to see how it is still relevant to today’s world.
How Incompetent Governments Use Its People:
In Akira, we saw how the people in authority used a child to test some experiments. Not just one, but many children were kept by the government, including Akira and the Espers. These boys’ bright futures got spoiled by the government when they started developing psychic powers and supernatural abilities.
They didn’t remain the same normal children. The superiors didn’t consider the citizens as humans, just like the present. Governments still do what they want to do, what they think is right for themselves, without considering the common people. Even if it costs them their lives, they wouldn’t think twice about going for it.
The Use of Power To Stop the Protests:
A lot was going on in the streets of Neo Tokyo. People were up against the government and its policies. One moment the protest was extremely peaceful, and with a blink of an eye, it got turned into a violent one. The reason was still unknown, but some media reported it as a protest for tax reforms. People suddenly started to get aggressive by attacking the military weapons as the police began to use tear gas on them.
Today, as an American, we are also marching against government policies concerning racism and police violence. The rich people were getting the advantages in Neo Tokyo, and the common man was being oppressed just like the current condition of the world. The use of the military against the people has now become so common as predicted by Otomo three decades earlier.
Effects On The Teenagers:
The use of drugs among teenagers was so common in Otomo’s portrayed Neo Tokyo. Kaneda and his biker gang were illicitly involved in all the bad things instead of investing their teenage life in high school. Also, the movie draws attention to the harassment being caused by the bikers against an official person. The troublemaking nature of the youth resulted in murder, revolution, and death on a citywide scale.
Nowadays, the use of illegal drugs is common too. Although the awareness and importance of education have been built in the youth’s minds, they still are attracted to these things. The respect of elders has also long gone forgotten. You will always find them doing all the bad stuff out on the streets by deceiving the police like a pro.
Influence On The Cinemas:
Akira was the first movie that focused not just on providing the audience with entertainment but also on showing them the reality that may sound bright from the surface but has a dark side underneath. Neo Tokyo was the perfect example of this. Otomo’s masterpiece proved to be the trendsetter for the later movies.
Akira also became the gateway for the directors and produced from the west to the Japanese animation world. The recent hit TV series ‘Stranger Things’ is said to be based on the idea of Akira. Like Tetsuo developed strange telekinetic powers after the crash but was kept by governmental facilities for experimentation, Eleven is also a child who escaped from the government and later realized that she has supernatural powers. It was later confirmed by the Duffer brothers too!
Another inspiration from Akira is said to be ‘Looper’ by the director, Rian Johnson. The movie shows a child who has the power to know what is going to happen. Just with using his mind, he killed his to-be assassin.
Many other influences involve the music video of Kanye West’s song — who is the biggest Akira fan — ‘Stronger’ that featured many remake shots of the movie.
Fans are recently waiting for the live-action remake of this movie as declared by Warner Bros. It has been working on it for over a decade. And the direction of the film has been fallen in the hands of the director Jordan Peele. He called Akira his favorite movie to work on but later rejected the project for god knows what reason.
It has been handed over to Taiki Watiti, who told us that the production would end on May 21, 2021, but the date might get delayed due to the current pandemic. Everyone is geared up in their iconic Akira Leather Jacket to go to the cinemas as soon as Taiki announced the final date.