Armitage III: Dual-Matrix
Originally posted on Planet Exile.
By: Kimberly Godwin – Thursday, July 1st, 2004 (01:55:40 PM)
Armitage the 3rd: Dual-Matrix returns to a future where Mars is still trying to establish independence from the matriarchy of the Earth Alliance. It is four years after the hellish events of the Armitage the 3rd OVA series, which was later remade into the shorter Poly-Matrix movie. We catch up to the Third (a type of android that can give birth to a human child) Naomi Armitage and her human partner, Ross Sylibus.
Armitage and Ross have settled into a quiet family life together under new identities, raising their four year-old daughter, Yoko. Everything is rather peaceful; Armitage has retired from her trash-talking, butt-kicking days of being a detective and settled into the role of being a housewife and mother. Ross has also retired from his days as a detective and has settled into a lower profile, security guard job.
The conflict in this movie is not too far from the past volumes: the people of Mars are still trying to win independence from Earth, but the major corporations of Earth are strongly opposed to the idea. The people of Mars are trying to grant Seconds (androids) equal rights by introduction of a bill in the Alliance Senate that would grant citizenship, while the people of Earth would rather not lose any profit or lower the amount of immigrants they can force on the people of Mars. The support for the bill falters when a report of a violent uprising of Seconds at a corporate research facility on Earth becomes common knowledge, thanks to the military general that led the team that stopped the occurrence. A Third that was murdered in the facility sent Armitage the true memories of the event, revealing a massacre of every being, human and android alike, by the military. Armitage decides to go to Earth to kill the man who murdered all the innocent humans and androids. Meanwhile, Ross gets pulled into the political struggle over android rights when he single handedly stops a terrorist attack on the facility that he guards and the only terrorists that manage to escape as Seconds while the only men that died were humans.
The battle for android rights continues on two fronts as Ross and Armitage fight their battles without the knowledge of what exactly the other is doing. Armitage doesn’t seem to have any sort of hesitation in killing or fighting to satisfy her own sense of justice after four years of a passive lifestyle. Ross goes to Earth as the reluctant spokesman for android rights with the Martian delegates to vote for the bill in the Alliance Senate when Yoko gets kidnapped to force him to vote against the bill. We don’t see much of Ross and Armitage together in this DVD but when they finally do get to be together again, their feelings for one another are quietly expressed before they move to the final battle for the future of their daughter.
The action sequences are still as fast-paced as ever with several one-on-one battles between Armitage and other androids as well as a car chase. The story is much like you would expect from a regular action movie and it keeps you interested as it progresses. I was really pleased to see how Armitage has grown emotionally as a person from the previous volumes, though being a mother has not changed her willingness to turn around and kill the bad guys. Armitage’s relationships with her husband and her daughter are downplayed so that you only understand that she does love them and would and does risk her life to protect them. My overall impression of the movie was that it moved along well and left no plot point unexplained. However, the mention of the Thirds and the allusions to past volumes will probably confuse any new viewers. I really recommend this movie to anyone who loves a good action flick with a heroine that is a strong character throughout the entire movie.