- Travel/Hot Spots
- World News
When I was a kid, the first bit of anime that I was introduced to wasn’t Sailor Moon or Speed Racer. It was a serial cartoon show called Star Blazers. Every Saturday, my brothers and I would watch as the crew of the space battleship Yamato traveled across the galaxy in serach of a cure for a dying planet Earth. While not a new concept to Japanese audiences, it was the first episodic cartoon I can remember. It had a kick ass story, amazing battle scenes, and a very memorable theme song. My brothers and I would often make Lego Yamato battleships including the dreaded “Wave Motion Gun.”
That was some thirty years ago, and despite an equally as cool sequel series, I never saw much of Star Blazers. It even took quite awhile for it to reach DVD under a completely different name. Back in Japan, however, the Yamato and her crew have enjoyed several fantastical adventures and many animated feature films, including Final Yamato dubbed as the longest animated film ever made (163 minutes, folks). Universal concepts such as honor, sacrifice, and love for your fellow man made this show a success abroad and loved by those who could remember it here.
This Decemeber, the Yamato and her crew will step off the animation cell and into the world of live action. Directed by Takashi Yamazaki (Japanese Academy Awards winner and special effects wizard) the movie will star Takuya Kimura as Susumu Kodai and Meisa Kuroki as Yuki. There was a teaser trailer that floated around the net this summer, but only recently did the studio let us get a glimpse of what we could expect. There are only a few things that bring me more joy than that which celebrates things I loved in my youth. For many of the images, characters, and obvious movie plot points are taken straight out of the cartoon I loved as a kid. Even Susumu’s hair is spot-on from his animated counterpart. If you’re an old fart like me, or a fan of the Yamato, you can’t help but get goosebumps watching what I can only describe as a whole ton of awesome. I’m not exactly sure when we might see a US version of this film, but I might just have to catch a ride to Japan to check it out. That is if Godzilla isn’t attacking at that time.