Using dark sequences along with mind bending puzzles or clues to this film, Oshii himself said he didn't know what this film was about while he directed it. A quaint but subtle story about a nameless girl protecting an egg she keeps hidden under her dress while at the same time is introduced accidentally to a military looking man who is also nameless that wields a cross shaped weapon. Normally one would just escape such an intimidating individual except the girl reluctantly begins to trust him slowly, and shows him some of the oldest, and strangest art she had come across while staying in such a desolate, and Gothic looking city gathering water.
For 1985 this movie was well done since it was hand drawn. NO CGI interfered, or was used for any frame. Artistically it's a marvel, but the story was quite deep with its existential plot. One could interpret the girl as being a caretaker of a sort while scavenging for food and water while the solider was someone destined to take her place after his death, which seemed to fit his character. Both of them were killed at one point in their lives but at different times. After he arrived by way of armoured tanks you never see them again.
The egg itself is a symbol of life. Maybe... she did take care of it since her arrival of who knows when, but as soon as the soldier broke it open the little girl decides to exact vengeance for his actions. Instead falls into a dark watery pit to her sudden death where her last breath of bubbles floats up to the surface in the form of eggs. After that on a lonely beach of despair you can see the solider looking over the horizon on a dark ocean where a great orb rises up. From the silent stands of idols however is the little girl sitting on her own throne holding the egg in diligent manner.
All he can do is watch the orb ascend to the heavens helpless, and alone. For his actions of breaking the egg says he must now take her place in order for retribution to his violent nature to be appeased. This film was quite satisfying as far as the story went. Many people could interpret who they were or why they were nameless. Souls that would be wiped out in an instant might travel to far distances in the afterlife. Maybe that's what the film was trying to say. The destination is the key. For the solider his travels were just beginning. For the girl, hers had ended. Horrible as it was she still fulfilled her duties, and got her just reward to heaven by way of a holy transport. The movie is very cerebral, often taking weird turns but leaves a nice taste behind for another part to be revealed. I highly recommend this film for two things... One it is hand drawn only. No CGI was used in any part of it. Second, the artistic display shown was fantastic.
Dark, dismal, but very poetic in some ways. It's not often such an animated film like this comes along but when it does it is so refreshing to watch. For action lovers this is not a film for you. You will get bored, and decide to shut it off or change the channel. For the more intellectual people I say take the time to study this film.
Review by blackmamba99971 from the Internet Movie Database.