Mardock Scramble: The Third Exhaust

Movie (1 ep x 69 min)
3.808 out of 5 from 1,895 votes
Rank #2,156
Mardock Scramble: The Third Exhaust

Rune Balot's struggle to bring the man who killed her to justice continues amid the world of high-stakes gambling and glamour at the Eggnog Blue Casino. The odds are stacked heavily in the house's favor and even with the aid of Dr. Easter and Oeufcoque, Rune's chances of winning are slim. But winning the golden chips containing Shell Septinos' memories is only the next step on a long and treacherous road. Rune's search for answers to the questions that haunt comes to a shattering climax.

Source: Sentai Filmworks

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The subtitle of this installment, "The Third Exhaust" couldn't be any more apropos, as it's an exhausting series to try and like. Story - 2/10 When I say the story left off where part two ended, I'm surprisingly not exaggerating. Rune and Dr. Easter are still seated at the blackjack table, trying to win enough chips so they can gather all the million dollar coins that store Shell's memories.  This goes on for half of the film, with time wasted on reciting card counting theory and other tips to blackjack. Once the house finds out what’s going on they send someone in to break up Dr. Easter's plan, so Rune must now rely on instinct to win. (Yeah this was all so very useless.) Upon completing their task, and obtained all of Shell's memories, they return home in an attempt to decipher what they can, to use as evidence in the trial against him, but unfortunatly this turns Shell from villain of our story, to just another tragic figure. With everything truly being perpetrated by the often used cliche of "The big evil rich guy/company did it.” A large majority of the ending consists of a gun fight between Rune and Boiled, which pretty much seems like the whole reason they made the series, to have a big knockdown battle in the end.  Animation - 8/10 The animation in this series will always take top billing, and it doesn't hurt when the first half of the film takes place in a venue that allows for vivid colors and scenes. They brought to life the world inside the casino, despite the entire scene taking place at one blackjack table. (Although personally I think Heat Guy J did it much better well over a decade ago.) Sound - 3/10 Again, sound is somewhat of an after thought here. There's so little put into it, which is sad because music and atmosphere can bring so much life to a series lacking as much as this one did. Characters - 3/10 Since things were finally being wrapped up they needed to explain the back story of at least one character, and that's pretty much all we got. The story of Shell and why he does what he does is finally explained, and it's straight from the cliche handbook.  Overall - 3/10 I can't help but think the writers of this series had just read a book on the secrets of winning at blackjack, and decided they wanted to have a cool casino scene in their film, having no plot they just cobbled together some random ideas, and then spent a whole ton of time explaining the tricks of the game. While there was some potential, they squandered that on putting most of the detail in a single gun battle, the blackjack game and gratuitous nudity (The hallmark of a bad series that needs to pull people in through gimmicks.) 


"Mardock Scramble: The Third Exhaust" brings the intricate and dark journey of Rune Balot to a climactic conclusion. This final installment of the trilogy continues to navigate the dense cyberpunk world established in the first two films, focusing on Rune's battle against the odds to achieve justice and find closure. As the culmination of her story, "The Third Exhaust" seeks to resolve the complex web of themes, character development, and narrative arcs introduced earlier, offering a conclusion that is both satisfying and thought-provoking. Final Revelations Narrative Convergence: The film adeptly brings together the many threads of the story, from Rune's personal evolution to the overarching battle against corruption and exploitation within the city. The pacing and structure of the narrative facilitate a coherent resolution to the series' intricate plot. Character Resolution: Rune Balot's character arc reaches its zenith, showcasing her growth from a victim to a protagonist with agency and strength. The depth of her transformation is highlighted, offering a compelling exploration of her resilience and determination. Visual Mastery: "The Third Exhaust" maintains the trilogy's high standard of animation and visual design. The cyberpunk aesthetic is further enriched with detailed environments and dynamic action sequences that complement the film's climax, ensuring the series concludes on a visually stunning note. Challenges Unraveled Complexity and Accessibility: As with its predecessors, the film's complexity can sometimes be a double-edged sword. While it enriches the narrative, it also demands attentiveness from viewers to fully grasp the intricacies of the plot and the significance of its resolution. Emotional Weight: The dark themes and intense narrative arcs that have characterized the trilogy persist, making "The Third Exhaust" a heavy viewing experience. The emotional and psychological depth, while compelling, may not resonate with all audiences. A Journey Completed Philosophical Depth: The trilogy, and "The Third Exhaust" in particular, delves into existential and ethical questions, challenging viewers to contemplate issues of identity, justice, and redemption. This philosophical underpinning elevates the narrative, offering a rich layer of meaning to Rune's journey. Closure and Continuity: The film provides a sense of closure for the characters and the storylines introduced throughout the trilogy, while also leaving room for reflection on the themes explored. This balance between concluding the narrative and encouraging ongoing contemplation is a testament to the trilogy's depth. Conclusion"Mardock Scramble: The Third Exhaust" offers a fitting and thought-provoking conclusion to a complex and visually captivating trilogy. Through its exploration of dark themes, character development, and philosophical questions, the film not only resolves the story of Rune Balot but also leaves a lasting impact on its audience. While the dense narrative and emotional intensity present challenges, they also contribute to the trilogy's depth and the final installment's satisfying conclusion. As the end of Rune's journey, "The Third Exhaust" is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the quest for justice in a flawed world.

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