"Unless you like giant Mech armor movies, pass on this one."

- Equinox21

Elysium (2002)

Director: Gweon Jae-Wung

Writer: Park Jeong-Hun

Producer: Kim Seok-Gi , Oh Won-Cheol

Cast: Kim Jang, Kim Jeong-A, Lee Jae-Myeong, Sa Seong-Wung, Ahn Jong-Ik, Yu Dong-Gyun, Lee Jong-Gu, Kang Gu-Han, Jeong Ok-Ju, Im Eun-Jeong, Lee Ho-In, Lee Gyu-Seok

Running Time: 75 min.

Plot: ELYSIUM - The name of planet which invade the earth. A scientist newly found a planet at AD 2113 which is located at the end of the Galaxy and they give it a name to Elysium. The story is about the message that only love for humanity can save the earth and the human beings in aggressive and resistant historical situation with the motive of brave worrier's adventures saving the human from attacks of outer world.


EQUINOX21'S REVIEW: Wonderful Days was the first Korean animation I’ve seen, and Elysium was the first 100% CGI Korean animation that I’ve seen.  But, it really doesn’t hold a candle to Wonderful Days or any of the full CGI movies to come out in the US.

The plot is pretty basic… Evil Alien General Necros assassinates the leader (and peace delegation) of his own race, the Elysium, and blames it on the Humans.  He uses this as justification to invade Earth.  Van is a pizza delivery boy who survives the initial invasion, and eventually finds himself piloting an enormous Mech armor suit (which looks an awful lot like Slave Zero from the video game of the same name).  He is one of four pilots of the human versions of the Mechs, but the Elysium have countless of their own.  Who do you think wins?  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out.

Now, about the animation, here’s a run down of the good, the bad and the ugly:


  • Characters’ skin – looked very realistically textured, well done on that
  • Space and Mech battles – pretty fluid looking and quite impressive
  • Music – a couple decent songs… the rest was ok
  • Lighting effects – VERY well done.  Great shadows, and reflections in the correct places; this added a LOT to the animation
  • Rain effects – for the 30 seconds it appeared on screen, it was pretty cool
  • Faces – pretty well animated, for the most part (except lips, see below)
  • Water effects – looked VERY real
  • Shattering of General Necros – General Necros gets attacked and shatters at one point (then reforms himself).  It was pretty cool… kinda like shattering glass
  • Metal look – looked very much like brushed metal, instead of the cliché shiny-as-hell-metal
  • Tentacles – Necros’ tentacles were well animated
  • Explosions – looked like real explosions… they might very well have been and just stuck in the CGI, I’m not sure


  • Hair effects – lousy;  looked like it was just “hair textures” stuck on the characters’ head models
  • Whole movie was like a “last time on…” segment – at the beginning of Part 2 of a 2-part episode of ANY TV show, they always start off with a “last time on (whatever show you’re watching)”, where they show a quick summary of what happened on the last episode; this whole movies felt that way.  There were no segues from one scene to the next… it simply JUMPED to the next scene.  It was very distracting.
  • The Pinball “Pod Race” scene – felt like it was right out of Episode 1, and not done well AT ALL, terribly choppy animation during that scene
  • Lips not animated synchronous to voices – the lip movement was negligible at best, you could barely tell a character was talking (instead you’d think the voice was coming from a character off screen), because the lips were hardly animated at all.  Crappy job.
  • Body/Hand movement – Perhaps this is just one of my “CGI Animation pet peeves”, but I HATE how many companies animate bodies and hands and don’t use motion capture.  In Elysium, the characters (when NOT in Mech armor) moved in a very “animated” way.  Example: When a character is swinging his arm, and it abruptly stops by his side (a bit like a “snap to” feature)… it’s not realistic, no one really moves like that.  This was annoying.
  • “Plasticy” textures on dress (but good fabric movement) – Van’s girlfriend, Lydia, wears a dress at one point that looks like it’s made out of plastic (the way it shines and such), however it moves like silk.  The look was bad, the movement was good.
  • Clipping – When Lydia is lying in the grass, you can see blades of grass moving through her hair that’s resting on top of it.  There were a few other things like this that should have been fixed
  • Flickers – Not sure what caused this, but there were at least a dozen incidents where a shadow or another element on someone’s body would flicker.  There was no excuse for this not being fixed
  • 75 minutes long – had they added more segues in to connect the scenes it could have been longer than only 75 minutes and really helped it not flow so damn fast.  Within 10 minutes of the move starting the Humans were already at war

Anyway, that’s more or less all of it.  Not bad, but not NEARLY as good as most of the full CGI movies I’ve seen.  Unless you like giant Mech armor movies, pass on this one.