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Steamboy | 2005 | PG-13 | - 1.5.1

Retro science-fiction anime, set in Victorian England, by "Akira" director Katsuhiro Ôtomo: a young inventor named Ray Steam is caught between his father's wish to share a new invention called a "steamball" with the masses and his grandfather's determination to keep it a secret, afraid that it will be ill-used. Harnessing the power of steam, the steamball is capable of providing power for the whole country, or of destroying it. With the voices of Anna Paquin, Anne Suzuki, Alfred Molina, Manami Konishi, Susumu Terajima and Patrick Stewart. [2:00]

SEX/NUDITY 1 - A boy and a girl get close to each other (nearly kissing) and a girl hugs a boy. A girl says that a boy, "whistled at me on the street." A man is shown bare-chested.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 5 - A man is struck by a bullet, he falls to the ground and we see blood pool under his head. A man shoots a man and he falls to the floor (we hear that he has a bloody leg wound).
 Two men fight, a boy and girl run away, a woman hits a man who falls to the floor, and he pulls a gun and fires a flare into the sky. A man hits a boy in the head and he falls on the floor. A boy teases another boy and tries to hit him, and the boy being teased hits the other boy with a metal pipe (we hear later that he almost "broke his head open").
 Police officers carrying axes approach a door, and men wearing metal suits come out of the building and fire their steam-powered weapons: statues are shattered, police officers retreat, and holes are blown in the ground.
 A boy launches himself into the air using a steam-powered launcher, the boy is shot at, he lands on a flying building, and he launches himself again when he is chased by a flier in a winged steam-based suit. A boy with a flying machine flies through a chamber, and he is chased by metallic arms.
 Tank-like steam-powered machines fire at each other, and one is destroyed. People with winged steam-based suits are flying and drop bombs on buildings and vehicles on the ground; one flier goes through a window and crashes to the ground, he drops a bomb and it explodes. A man drops a bomb into a building, it explodes and a man is injured.
 Cannons are fired at a large building that begins to break apart: it rises off the ground, other buildings begin to collapse, a ship in a port is pushed by large waves created by the falling buildings, and steam freezes the water around the buildings. A building rising off the ground sprouts long legs that lower onto other buildings and crush them; the building tips and crumbles and crashes onto other buildings and a river.
 A large vehicle crashes into a house, and then chases a boy on another vehicle; the boy jumps onto train tracks, a train bears down on him and he is pinned between the train and the other vehicle, but the boy climbs onto the train and the other vehicle is pushed off a bridge and into water below (no one is hurt). A boy jumps and runs from a man who chases him, the boy jumps and slides along a cable, he runs through water and into a drain, the drain pipe fills with water and the boy is pushed out of the building by the stream while men shoot at him. A large metal claw pierces the side of a train and pulls off the top, and a net is dropped onto a boy and he is pulled up while he struggles. A man lunges at a boy.
 Several scenes show steam pressure building up in pipes, blowing bolts out, breaking pipes in half, etc., and in some instances people are injured; one such scene shows men being knocked back by water pouring from broken pipes and it is suggested that at least one man has been killed. A pedestal rises from the floor lifting three people in to the air. A bridge begins to crumble and we hear about many people being in peril. A blimp nearly crashes into the side of a train station. A door is blown off its hinges.
 We see a man with a patch over one eye and patches of missing hair after he has been sprayed with steam. A dog yaps and whimpers when a girl squeezes and hits him.
 Two men yell at each other in several scenes, and a man yells at his grandson.
 A man tells a boy that his father is dead. A boy is punished by not getting to eat dinner.


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LANGUAGE 1 - 1 mild anatomical term, insults and name-calling (rotten, stupid), 2 religious exclamations.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Steam power, the power of science, imagination, greed, capitalism, arrogance, vanity, ignorance, security, realization of dreams, pure hearts.

MESSAGE - Science should be used to benefit mankind, not to destroy it. From risk comes progress.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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