Friday, July 15, 2011

Jmovie review: Space Battleship Yamato

Yamato is the big budget science fiction KimuTaku movie from last year based on a classic anime. I don't think I've ever watched the anime but I remember seeing iconic images of the battleship when I was young. Influential sci-fi anime from my childhood would be Captain Harlock and of course Macross. I had no expectations of Yamato. I was expecting shoddy CG and crappy acting, especially with Kuroki Meisa co-starring and so got my expectations really low.

Yup, an actual gun thingie comes up to fire the Wave Motion Gun. I checked the anime and it was basically the screen and a stick with a trigger like a fighter plane's for aiming. Whoever the genius was who decided that an actual gun which can't even move is a better idea should be shot.

I remember reading that the makers of the Yamato got Aerosmith to sing the ending theme and it didn't set of any alarm bells. Why go to all that trouble when you have plenty of awesome Japanese bands? What Aerosmith song is the most famous in movies? Yup, the Armageddon song. Yamato is a poor Armageddon plus Independence Day wannabe, incorporating the endings of the two movies.

Nothing wrong with that story wise except, well you know the part in ID4 where they somehow magically managed to infiltrate deep into the alien 'brain' and managed to upload a virus? Something pretty similar happens in Yamato and lets just say the ending of Armageddon is made so much sappier as well to the point that it feels like they are trying to milk blood from a stone.

Every space battleship needs a cool captain.

The CG is actually pretty decent in the beginning but later it becomes pretty bad, especially the green screen stuff and the humans vs aliens shoot out. Its pretty obvious they ran out of time or money. If I had a limited budget, I would be limiting my special effect shots and saving it for the most important scenes.

This shot makes me wish they'd use the money to do Irresponsible Captain Taylor instead. It would have been so much more fun to watch.

Despite the all star cast, Yamato just feels so emotionally flat with way too much overacting. Actually there was nothing really bad until we come to the shoot out scene that had the signs saying 'oops we ran out of money' all over it and then the film just collapses into a melodramatic mess. Yamato is movie that want's to be like a huge $150 million Hollywood blockbuster but it would have been better if they had tried to shoot the movie in a way that would best serve the comparatively limited budget.


Anonymous said...

i better watch 2001 space odyssey.

speaking of movies. i saw the moteki trailer already and there are two chicks caught my eye. maki yoko and Masami Nagasawa. mirai is really lucky.

Jesus Christ Supercop said...

Yamato is probably the most boring movie ever made about a space ship traveling beyond the galaxy to save mankind from an alien army. It's also extremely cliched and melodramatic and nothing makes sense and the characters are idiots and by the end I was fast forwarding and it still felt too slow.

Akiramike said...

After watching the trailer, I'm still partial to the dorama casting.

JCS, your description should be on the DVD desciption of Yamato.