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Space Battleship Yamato - チョー


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This is something I won a prize in the 80s for drawing the battleship in ST (anyone has that picture? )

 

Looking forward to the show - and thanks God Disney did not manage to buy the script!

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBu1cZm4Gqg

 

One of the most significant pieces of anime to come out of the ’70s was the Space Battleship Yamato series, broadcast in the States as Star Blazers. The US broadcast paved the way for animated series that existed as connected story arcs, and the original three seasons spawned a set of animated films in Japan.  A live-action version of Space Battleship Yamato has been in the works for quite a while, and the film began shooting in October. Now there’s a trailer that actually captures the look of the original anime. Dare we hope that the feature might actually be good?

Based on what we know so far, the feature seems to be following the basic trajectory of the original series, in which a refugee band of humans crafts a starship out of the scuttled Japanese battleship Yamato. The ship travels to the Large Magellanic Cloud to score some alien tech that can cleanse Earth of radiation and help humans gain the upper hand over an aggressive interstellar antagonist.

 

 

Some changes have been made to the story, however. The Anime News Network reported a while ago that a couple of male characters from the original are now female, and suggested slight changes for at least one major character. But looking at this teaser it seems like the $22m production has got the look of the show down pat, especially when it comes to the Yamato itself and the battles in which it takes part. Way to tease the firing of the ship’s devastating Wave Motion Gun, too.

 

 

 

Read more: Space Battleship Yamato International Teaser | /Film http://www.slashfilm.com/2010/01/03/space-battleship-yamato-international-teaser/#ixzz0bebbbvX7

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  • 1 year later...

If you were a child of the 70’s like I was, you will no doubt be familiar with Star Blazers – the Americanised and sanitised version of the anime Space Battleship Yamato. I did not imagine that this will one day get a big-budget live-action featuring Japanese A-listers in its cast. And when the movie was released, I know that I just have to watch this.

 

Being a part of your growing up years, I thought I will be filled with nostalgia and go into the cinema hall with emotional baggage.  It’s a good thing that it has been so many years and I really cannot remember too much of the details of the original series; not enough to have any emotional baggage anyway. All I can remember was the warp drive, the 148,000 light year journey and of cos the Wave Motion Gun – arguably the coolest concept in cartoon anime then.

 

I will be honest and say I was expecting a lot of cheese from this show as most anime-to-live-action movies tends to be. And I was really really happy that an American studio is not hemming this. Space Battleship Yamato turns out to be a really enjoyable movie, even for anyone who has no idea of the original series it was based on. Indeed I think anyone who enjoyed a good Sci-Fi movie and/or Space Oprea will have a good time with this movie.

 

The movie is budgeted at US$22 million and it shows! While the Space Battleship Yamato is without a doubt the star of the show, it does not overshadow the varied cast of characters that makes up the show. And this is the true hallmark of any great anime series. The plot device that drew audiences in will be relegated to a supporting role eventually in the series.

 

The plot of the story is about earth being ravaged by a mysterious and evil alien race the Ganmilions. Devastated by deadly meteorite missiles, humanity is forced to live underground to escape the deadly radiation. A space capsule from the Planet Iscandar brings hope that an anti-radiation device can be found to rid earth of the deadly radiation and turn it green again. The Space Battleship Yamato is charged with making 148,000 light years journey to the Planet Iscandar and return back with the device. The story is a little cliche and the plot twist will not fool any seasoned movie goers; but its generally good and does not really insult your intelligence.

 

The show has a good mix of casts headlined by the dashing Takuya Kimura who plays the bash hothead squadron leader Susumu Kodai. Kimura may be a pretty face but he has acting chops and he plays Kodai right down to a T. He started the show with a lot of angst and anger and ended it with the ultimate sacrifice and heroism. The breakthrough for the character came when Kodai was the Acting Captain during a Ganmillions attack on the Yamato. He has to make a command decision that was painful for him (it went against everything he believed in) but was ultimately for the greater good of the ship.

 

Most of the Japanese casts will be virtually unknown to most of us but special mention goes out to Tsutomu Yamazaki and Meisa Kuroki who played the role of Yamato’s captain Jūzō Okita and ace fighter/love interest Yuki Mori respectively. Tsutomu Yamazaki cut a regal and imposing figure that bought up fully the aura of what a captain of a Space Battleship would behave. In the latter part of the movie, as he was dying and lying in bed, he still managed to portray that aura. It was a remarkable performance.  Meisa Kuroki may not be the most drop dead gorgeous Japanese actress on screen but my god does she looks good in that tight leather pants!

 

Overall the entire cast performance is competent and you do not get a lot of chessy acting that you come to expect from show like Power Rangers.

 

The space fights and battle scenes are also very nice and there were a few exciting action sequences. The SFX is ok but it will not blow you away. In fact, I think the SFX is just a slight notch above what you see in Battlestar Galactica.  Those expecting a long drawn start to finish space battles one after another will be disappointed. There are some action sequences but they are by no means the main focus of this movie. For a movie that runs for 110 minutes, I estimate that there is probably less than 20 to 25 minutes of action sequences.

 

Of particular mention has to be the launch of the Space Battleship Yamato and the initial firing of the Wave Motion Gun. The entire sequence from the charging of the warp engine, to the raising of the gun scope, the countdown and squeezing of the trigger will send chill down the spine of fans of the series.  

 

Despite the many conversations and characters interaction, the pacing of the movie is excellent and I find myself drawn into the character development and the unveiling of the story. In particular, the development of the characters of Kodai and Okita and the interaction between them was a key focus of the film and I am glad the director fleshed out both characters sufficiently well for you to have an emotional connection.

 

Space Battleship Yamato is arguably the best anime-to-live-action adaptation I have seen. It is highly recommended for anyone who grew up watching Star Blazers and anime fans in general. It is also recommended for anyone who is a sci-fi or space opera fan or anyone who is looking for a good time at the movie. It is also a movie suitable for kids so remember to bring your boys and relive the magic with them all over again.

 

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Just came out of the cinema - short post becoz Lonewolf has said it all so well. I enjoyed it tremendously. But just to nit-pick a few things - the final act is just mired too deep in melodrama... Kinda like the last 45min of The Return of the King (extended) which always makes my hair stand. Same-O here...  :-\

 

Pacing could have been better and some minutes could have been shaved to make the plot tighter. As it is, it feels like a TV series rather than a movie. It's probably just me but I feel how the small ships fly and shoot their lasers almost feel like Battlestar Galactica TV series. Sound effects are nearly the same too.

 

I just love ogling at Yamato... Beautiful. Actually it's the only thing I recall during my childhood in front of the TV

 

I am sure the writers never plan this - but writing abt a mission to locate an anti-radiation device is so so uncannily ironic in these present times

 

One last observation, usually by a movie's one week life span the number of audience would have dwindled off. Not true Tonite. At Plaza Sing GV, it was still 80% full and there are even Japanese folks watching. Niceeee  :D

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I made a mental note of it but failed to mention it in my review; but Kodai's pre-planet-landing speech was not the most stirring and inspiring speech we ever seen on cinema. I'm glad no one nit-pick that one cos I realised that we need to take things into prospective and remember this is a Japanese movie. And the Japanese are not exactly renowned for making inspiring and morale boosting speeches so I think its not too bad. However if you take into context the fact the Kodai probably learnt the truth about the anti-radiation device by then; and for him to make such a speech adds another complex layer to the man he has become by then in the movie.

 

I know that the pacing would bother a lot of people. I dun think its everyone's cup of tea to watch a group of people in a spaceship - interacting with one another, having drinks, celebrating and communicating with each other. eg. I love the segment where all crew were given 5 minutes to communicate with their family before Yamato left the solar system. Sure that segment could be cut to improve the pacing, but by leaving it intact created a connection between the audience and the characters.

 

Yes I was also surprised at the turnout at the cinema. I watched it a Vivo in probably its smallest cinema but it was relatively well attended. Anyway, its does not have a very wide screening (only showing on selected GV cinemas) so I'm not too surprised if its 80% full.

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Space Battleship Yamato - チョー

 

In the 70s, apart from Star Wars and Star Trek, one of the biggest phenomenons to across the seas from the US, was the anime series  Space Battleship Yamato, which was a successful hit based on the revival of the WWII battleship as a spaceship. I was one of the many kids who grew up watching the series, and even took part in drawing competitions based on this. So will a 2011 show draw the same success?

 

Firstly, all fans of this series will enjoy the show, even if the show was an abject failure. The mere sight of the hull of the battleship, the firing of the wave gun and the familiar soundtrack are sufficient for most fans to flock to the cinemas. Then most Japs need a show like this right now, with the central themes of sacrifice, heroism, and bravado, and a mission to save millions and doing so despite the odds. The timing of this show will be a poignant accidental reference to the brave men still fighting the fires, earthquakes, and the nuclear problems in Japan. Then the main star Takuya Kimura is the third reason both men and women will throng the cinemas.

 

For a USD 24 million budget, you get pretty decent CGI, and the details on the Yamato are impressive and the fight scenes won't disappoint, but those aiming for all all out actioner will be a tad disappointed, as there are moments focused on the crew which actually make the movie more balanced.

 

Throw in elements borrowed from Star Trek, Battlestar Galatica, and a brace of other shows, and you have a plot, where a war-torn and near extinct Earth has to travel to Planet Iskandar to find a cure for the radiation introduced by alien enemies. In between add the chick factor in the form of Yuki Mori, played by an absolutely saccharin sweet Meisa Kuroki that will surely increase your blood sugar levels ten fold and a whole host of pretty boys and girls, and you have fair reason to indulge in 131 minutes of your time.

 

The plot is a little uneven, with moments of tense action, but with too many black holes of melodrama that make you wish you had a fast forward button (see the last chapter of the movie...) and you also have a few "huh?" moments which detract from the positivity of the opening act (which is a little borrowed from the latest Star Trek movie). Nevertheless there is more than enough for fans of the series, and even for the curious ones who have no inkling of the old series, it remains watchable and a good enough diversion for the time spent.

 

Takuya has been a superstar in Japan and many parts of Asia, and he plays the maverick role here to perfection, using the attitude he had in many shows such as "Hero" to good use and he adds charisma and the star quality to the show, and the addition of the many eye candy, including Meisa Kuroki just make the show hot enough. You can indeed hear the signs from the girls in the audience and the men won't be too unhappy at the choice of the female lead, who makes the yellow jacket and leather pants of Team Kodai look hotter than a volcano. Takuya has better chemistry with my fav female lead - Takako Matsu who really bonds with him, but the eye candy the younger girl offers compensates.

 

There are moments of over-acting, but its very Japanese to go "emo" and you need to accept this style.

 

As for the sound, well it isn't as good as I expect, with the action scenes enjoying good surround but a surprising lack of deep bass. I will struggle hard to justify this as a demo worthy Blu Ray disc purchase.

 

A decent effort, and worth a watch, all 148 000 light years worth...

 

 

Yamato was also a symbol of heroism and of their desire to regain a sense of masculinity after their country's defeat in the war.

 

Musashi for a part II?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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