So I said in a previous post that I wanted to look at my favorite media and analyze what about my favorite movies, books, TV shows, etc is so appealing to me. I decided to start off with what is arguably my favorite movie of all time: Speed Racer.
1) Stylistic Graphics
I am a huge fan of the graphics. I tend to like the aesthetic choices of the Wachowskis. Most of their movies are not great, truthfully, but their style, mixed with the feel of the anime I grew up with, made this world, and thus the movie, feel so beautiful to me. I understand this particular look is not something that a lot of people like (I think it may have been one of the reasons this movie did so horribly, but that might have also been the anime style that not many Americans appreciate), but reality that looks like a brighter, somewhat cartoonish version of reality tends to grab my attention right away. I also especially enjoyed the separation of the characters from the background, which allowed the background to move, blur, or even have different filters to change scenes or add emotion.
2) Fight Scenes
I really enjoy good fight choreography, and the races basically were fight scenes. In the Casa Cristo Speed and Racer X team up to fight off all the other cars in the dust cloud and it’s pretty amazing. Also when Speed gets Snake Oiler guy on the rail, bearing down on him with his tire. Or especially when Speed fights Jack ‘Cannonball’ Taylor and then leaves him behind.
I like the strong relationship between Speed and his family (which includes Trixie and Sparky). I like stories where there is a sense of trust between characters. Pops was willing to do business with Royalton if Speed wanted to, even though he knew big companies were not to be trusted. Trixie was willing to help Speed sneak away from home to go to the Casa Cristo because it was important to him. Mom kept everyone together when they tried to fall apart when they found out about Casa Cristo. And how Pops was willing to let Speed go when everything seemed to be spiraling out of control, but made sure to tell Speed how much he loves him.
I like the brotherly love between Speed and Rex/Racer X. Rex means everything to Speed and Speed is likewise crushed when his big brother turns ‘dirty’. When Speed tells Racer X they made a great team while driving in the Casa Cristo and how much Racer X probably wanted to tell him the truth. Then Speed accuses Racer X of being his brother, and how disappointed he is when he’s ‘wrong’, but how Racer X encourages him like only a big brother would be able to.
There is even romance and a world that feels huge with all the details and backstory they bring up (Which I appreciate as a fantasy author). I go back to this movie again and again, and there are really no scenes that I regularly skip over. Even the scenes with the monkey (I hate monkeys) are not long or drawn out enough to be an annoyance. This movie just hits a lot of sweet spots when it comes to what I enjoy.