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I'm confused. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Vexille or Appleseed Ex Machina? Was the former born from the latter's twin embryo, or was it the other way around? Because it only takes ten minutes of watching each of them, to see that they're the exact same goddamn thing. For ten minutes, anyway...

- futuristic setting involving cyborgs / androids / bioroids - check
- hot chick in the lead role - check
- random imposing building assaulted by the good guys - check
- the good guys making an airborne insertion - check
- idle chatter during the flight - check
- pew-pew - check
- the bad guys are cyborgs - check
- big bad guy with a big bad machine gun - check
- random imposing building goes boom - check

The pattern is there, it's clear as the day, and it's absolutely infuriating. Yes, I'm pissed off. I'm pissed off because somebody is clearly ripping off the other production team, and I have no idea who's who. I can only assume that, since Vexille was made by (some of) the creators of the original Appleseed CG movie, they may have borrowed (some of) the ideas for the sequel, and used them in Vexille. However, even if that's the case, I will still congratulate them for doing a much better job with Vexille, than the others did with Appleseed Ex Machina - which, I have to confess from head start, is certainly not my favorite between the two.

Things may have been completely different, had I seen the two films in another order, or had I bothered to re-watch the original Appleseed from which both of them are obviously drawing their inspiration - visually and thematically (I was too wasted at the time to remember much). But beyond the frustrating feeling that I have been watching the same thing again and again, there's something about Vexille... Well, there's something about Vexille.

For one thing, Vexille's story has a very cool twist halfway through the movie, whereas Ex Machina was so predictable that it made me sick; hell, if I could see "it" coming, anyone can. I also found Vexille to be more refined in many ways, in contrast with Ex Machina's more commercial style. Then there's the issue of a love / emo triangle with two hot chicks in Vexille, versus just one in Ex Machina - but that's more like a matter of taste, I guess (if you're into yaoi'sh triangles, Ex Machina is for you). And not least of all, it also depends on whether you enjoy a fresh new start, or the continuation of something you're already familiar with; and maybe even attached to (me, I'm all for freshness).

Perhaps the only aspect that everyone will agree on is that, visually, both of them look superb! Nice boats cel-shaded characters, intense action sequences (Ex Machina wins in quantity here, but the quality is debatable), and overall they share a very, very similar look. Some rough visual differences would be that Ex Machina sports plenty of mecha stuff and a more "plastic" look, while Vexille seems to focus on realism and more impressive animations. Ex Machina's high production value may have been expected from something produced by John Woo, but to see Vexille also rising up to that challenge - and surpassing it, I'd say - is quite the surprise.

If I were to delve deeper into this parallel, I would risk spoiling pretty much of their story. So it might be a good idea to wrap this up early. Rest assured, though, there's a lot more "sharing" going on between the two movies, including their very ending scenes. Maybe not in essence, but in the surroundings which are... well, enough said. I can only advise you watch both Vexille and Appleseed Ex Machina, as they're both well worth it, and then choose to favour whichever suits you best. If not even my comrade agrees with my position, don't expect any unanimous decision from us in this ongoing debate...

P.S. I'm right. He's wrong.
Timoteiwrote on Mar 17, 2008 at 17:22
Ooh, didn't know about Vexille. It looks like a pretty awesome movie, gonna have to check it out. I didn't quite like Appleseed (2004) but hopefully Vexille is a nice one.

They both look gorgeous though!
animestar282wrote on Sep 30, 2008 at 23:51
I don't know what the problem is, they aren't really the same, sure they are alike in some ways but they both kick some major ass!!! Personally i liked Appleseed Ex Machina more than Vexille. I mean don't get me wrong, i loved Vexille and all but i think Appleseed was better. They should sooooo have sequels to them though. If you have any info about other shows like these please e-mail me!!! I agree with Timotei, they both do look gorgeous!!
anonymouswrote on Oct 11, 2008 at 23:13
They are done by the same person, idiot.
Stokkywrote on Oct 13, 2008 at 03:10
Say what? And who exactly would this "same person" be who "did" both Vexille and Ex Machina? If you mean Fumihiko Sori, he only produced the first Appleseed afaik, not Ex Machina.
strangerwrote on Dec 29, 2008 at 01:43
really liked appleseed ex machina and didn't think it was predictable at all, but i will check out vexille
anonymouswrote on Feb 2, 2009 at 11:02
Hey TC!

if you think Vexille VS. EX Machina was like dejavu, then how about FF Spirits Within and Applseed 1?

Try watching them again and you'll see the striking similarities in the beginning of the movie.
Vexille #1wrote on Jul 19, 2009 at 12:12
Comparing Vexille to that ex machina **** is an insult to Vexille and the writers and developers of Vexille. Sure there are similarities, like between Star Wars and Star Trek.

Ex Machina was the most predictable, idiotic non-linear "fate" driven drivel I had the pain to view. If you're 12 years old, Ex Machina's for you. If you're an adult who likes a bit more depth and intrigue to the plot, definitely Vexille.
Anonymouswrote on Aug 3, 2009 at 08:06
Wow. There's one thing you ALL need to get straight here, and that's the fact that Appleseed Ex Machina and Vexille were created by the same production team within the same studio.

The similarities are intentional, as explained on the Vexille DVD commentary (which I assume none of you read) as a method of post-advertisement for Appleseed Ex Machina.

Seriously, guys. Get a grip.
anonymouswrote on Dec 11, 2009 at 07:25
Appleseed 1 wins haha! But out of these two (Vexille and Exmachina) I think Vexille was much better.
anonymouswrote on Feb 15, 2011 at 08:45
You have to know that Vexille was made to please the american public with a larger audience. Appleseed and Ex-Machina were mostly made for those who loved the manga 20 years ago. The story may lookt the same, but the overall isn't.
Fariswrote on Feb 15, 2011 at 15:01
Could've fooled me, Ex-Machina looked a lot more 'hollywoodian' than Vexille to me.
anonymouswrote on Feb 5, 2017 at 07:35
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