|DVD Space Battleship Yamato
Run time: 131 min
Genres: Action | Adventure | Drama
Director: Takashi Yamazaki
Writers: Leiji Matsumoto, Shimako Sato
Stars: Takuya Kimura, Meisa Kuroki, Toshirô Yanagiba
In 2199, five years after the start of the Gamilas attack on Earth, the planet has been ravaged by the aliens’ radiation bombs and the remnants of humanity have fled underground. One day, former pilot Susumu Kodai discovers a capsule sent from the planet Iskandar that tells of a device that can remove the radiation from the Earth’s surface. The United Nations of Space Administration rebuilds the battleship Yamato, with a new type of propulsion system – the wave motion engine. This enables it to make the long trip to Iskandar and back in hopes of saving the Earth. Within 73 days the radiation will drive the rest of humanity to extinction. Written by Anonymous
|Plot Keywords: radiation, yamato, battleship, capsule, bomb|
Release Date: 1 December 2010 (Japan)
Budget: $12,000,000 (estimated)
This latest production of Reiji Matsumoto's classic series deserves high ratings for its production value especially considering its low budget of 12 million USD, which is less than a fifth of average Hollywood motion pictures.
In the year 2199 earth is under attack by planet Gamiras and is hopelessly contaminated by radiation. One day they receive a transmission from planet Iskandar with a plan for warp engine and a wave cannon. In their last hope, people of Japan uses this information to transform battleship Yamato – a world war II relic that is now exposed out of a dried up sea bed into a spaceship. They set out to Iskandar which exists in the great Magellan nebula in hopes of finding an answer to earth's problem.
I see touch of Babylon 5 and Battlestar Galactica in the overall looks and feel of the props, ships and the battle sequences, but it's certainly the very best special effects science fiction I've ever seen to come out of Japan. I'd say that Japanese sci-fi have finally come of age in this movie.
The final sequence of this movie is very Japanese in my opinion, and might be over melodramatic for the international audience, but the movie was made for the Japanese viewers, so I don't have any problems there.
Takuya Kimura has a habit of stretching out the ending of a word when calling out orders, and speaking dramatically which sounded odd at times, and the dead pan acting of Meisa Kuroki could have been more charming, but overall things were believable and didn't mess up the story.
Beautifully done movie with real feeling of being out there in space, with unbelievable special effects considering its budget. This is certainly the best sci-fi movie to come out of Japan, and is Toho's new masterpiece.
Well, considering the length of the original series, the movie producers have done well cramming it all into a 2-hour long film.
There are a few flaws in the movie I thought needed a bit more work on.
1. There is little feelings of romance between Kodai Susumu and Mori Yuki. It just felt flat. This, I attributed, to the target audience of the original animated series.
2. The melodrama at the end, on the bridge, was very Japanese….. in the 1970s. It should have been shorter and more modernized. I guess one has to be a die-hard fan not to find that scene particularly long-winded.
3. There wasn't enough battle footage of the Yamato and her enemies. This I was seriously looking forward to, but was left disappointed.
4. I wish Mr Kimura would shed a few tears, that would have made his performance more believable.
That said, there were quite a few good points about the movie, 1. Realistic space-fighter maneuvers. The big turnarounds of spaceships and fighters in American sci-fi is just plain BS. The only other sci-fi that got it right was Babylon 5.
2. Up until the bridge scene right at the very end, I was actually not aware of the time passing.
3. This movie have some of the better Japanese actors in recent years. Overall, their performances are well delivered and their friendships believable.
4. Swearing and vulgarities are non-existent in the entirety of the movie (or none that I am aware of). This is a rarity these days, especially with all the filth coming out of American and European films.
5. The graphics and SFX are quite good. They are quite realistic. I have no problem with much of it except for those SFX sounds the lasers and beams made…. sound very arcade-like and very 70s.
This movie is worth the ticket you paid for.
I watched and loved the anime 'Starblazers' as a kid and now 30+ years on I find out they've made a live action version of the series that I knew absolutely nothing about! Well, I just HAD to watch it, not expecting anything great…. putting my hopes as high as a SciFy movie of the week or a campy Godzilla movie.
Boy was I surprised! The movie does leap right into things without the background development of the main 'spaceship' or real character introductions, but to enjoy the movie, especially if you have any familiarity with the source cartoon, it really didn't hinder it that much. When the 'Yamamoto' took off and the special effects were introduced, I almost crapped my pants! It looked FANTASTIC!! Exactly like my 9 year old mind pictured as if it were brought to life!
This movie is FAR from Shakespeare, but for an action space romp, popcorn munching entertainment vehicle… it sure impressed me silly… especially compared to the dreck coming out of Hollywood these days.
If you have fond memories of 'Starblazers', this is a MUST SEE… even if you never saw the cartoon, I'd highly recommend this as a decent time waster…. you could do far worse!
While I'll grant you similarity in the setting of a space cruiser named after a famed WWII ship in space (USS Enterprise was a famous WWII air craft carrier, senkan Yamato was a famous WWII battleship), beyond that, nothing about Yamato has anything to do with Star Trek other than Matsumoto Reiji may have been inspired by it.
That said, no further invocation of American media landmarks is necessary in discussing this title.
The film was entertaining. I didn't look at the clock until the end. At times, the film was a bit melodramatic but all-in-all the movie was good.
The special effects were very good. I've heard it said this was a low budget film. I can accept that assessment. But the story telling was decent and conveyed the starry-eyed intensity of the comic nicely!
There were some downs but the only one I'd bother with was the romance between the main character and the ace pilot. It hit me like a pizza delivery scooter from outside my peripheral vision. Never saw it coming and didn't quite understand it.
In the end, I enjoyed it and I'd recommend people familiar with the comic/anime series check it out.