Overstuffed with vertigo-inducing visual effects and cheesy dialogue, Speed Racer is a disappointing film which will only appeal to hardcore comic book fans. Bombarded with scenes of video-game-styled images, non-fans will feel like they're trapped in a video game for more than two unnecessary hours. Keen fans of Japanese anime themselves, directors the Wachowski brothers - who created the far more impressive Matrix trilogy - seemed to have gone overboard mixing real life with fantasy. The combination of cartoon images with live footage detracts from the plot. A faithful adaptation of the original Japanese anime Mach GoGoGo storyline, the film depicts the battle between hotshot racer Speed (Emile Hirsch) and evil racing titan Royalton (Roger Allam). With the support of his devoted family and girlfriend (Christina Ricci), Speed races his way to the top. The characters' exaggerated acting and facial features make them look more like cardboard cut-outs from the comic strip than real persons. The repetition of racing scenes also greatly diminishes their climactic value. As if to compensate for the chaotic storytelling and paper-thin characterisation, the directors infused the film with gags about children and animals. But instead of providing comic relief from the never-ending tedium, the lame jokes only succeed in further repelling the audience.