Monday, July 19, 2010

Jmovie review: Ballad

I never had an osananajimi who was 14 years younger...

Ballad is yet another time-slip story. Primary school kid Shinichi one day discovers a letter buried under an oak tree and is transported to the past. Specifically during the warring states period in a country Kasuga. He convinces the leader that he is from the future by showing his camera and is placed under the care of Ijiri. (Kusanagi Tsuyoshi) Ijiri of course happens to be Kasuga's greatest warrior and the osananajimi of princess Ren played by Aragaki Yui.

So basically you have kid from future mixed with forbidden love between Ren hime-sama and Ijiri. Usually with this type of time-slip shows, the person from the future starts changing the past by introducing technologies and ideas but since the time traveler is a kid. All Shinichi does is just this stupid scene with him riding his bicycle.

What do you mean I'm not in the Sengoku Musou games?

Jin sensei plays the evil warlord who wants to marry Ren and thus place Kasuga under his protection. Up to this point, the show is ok. Then, Shinichi's parents appear by driving their 4WD to the oak tree where he had disappeared from. This is where I'm wondering what's the point of having the parents' show up? Is the father going to be the one to teach the Kasuga people how to build grenades or machine guns?

Jin sensei decides that to go evil by growing a moustache.

Nope, all we get are two scenes with the 4WD and Shinichi's dad taking pictures of the soldiers. Shinichi's dad told the leader that he had never heard of Kasuga in the future and the leader decided to cancel Ren's engagement to Jin sensei because it the country would be swallowed up by Jin-sensei. Ijiri and Ren can't really express their feelings to each other blah blah blah and then we have the castle siege. I was thinking they could have had Shinichi bring along an instant camera and since he was a history buff, he could have told the leader the same thing. Must every family movie have to have parents in it?

Someone please lob that kid's head off.

Now the castle siege part is pretty fun. I was impressed with the mix of real actors and CG to make things look believable unlike many movies that just use CG *cough*Red Cliff*cough*. The whole parents thing just really bothered me. Kasuga manages to survive a day and they decide to do a surprise attack the next day. This is when the true purpose of Shinichi's parents is revealed. To drive through the troops into Jin sensei's base WITH THE WINDOWS DOWN AND SHINICHI STICKING HIS HEAD OUT.

I think I'm going to buy some shares in Toyota.

I know this is a kids movie because of the lack of blood and parents bit but does that mean it should be devoid of logic? Firstly Shinichi's dad should not have brought his wife and kid. Cars are not immune to guns and arrows. Secondly, leaving your windows open? Yeah soldiers are scared of the 4WD but what makes he think they won't hurl a spear or shoot an arrow especially with Shinichi sticking his head out? I think both Shinichi's parents should be banned from ever having children again for having no common sense. Actually I think the writer should be banned from writing ever again.

Ooo, I can see into the female onsen in the next town! And so the first tousatsu picture in the world is taken.

Its just ridiculous how quickly the movie falls apart at the second half. Aragaki Yui is ok and Kusanagi Tsuyoshi is serviceable but not a convincing warrior. His battle set up speech was an abomination. The effort is there for Ballad but it just felt like a soulless movie by a committee trying to please the general public. Avoid Ballad. Its not worth watching.  

1 comment:

mshaydown said...

I was contemplating on whether or not to watch this movie since I've been pretty impressed with Aragaki Yui's performances in her previous shows. Well, thanks for the review...I think I shall stay away from it then ahhaha!