Some short films are like an entire feature film packed into a small package. And that is perhaps the best description of Specimens: it may only be fifteen minutes long, but it feels like some lost Sci Fi feature film you know you’ve seen but can’t quite remember. Mind you, you probably haven’t ever heard […]
Read more "Specimens (1982)"
(aka Revenge of the Defenders, Daitetsujin Wan-Sebun. Literal Translation: Iron Robot 17) It was such an Eighties thing. Take a Japanese children’s TV series and distill all its weirdness into an hour and a half so you could sell it as a movie. Simple, right? Even when it is 35 half-hour episodes. Well, it’s actually […]
Read more "Brain 17 (1982)"
(aka, Message from Outer Space, Space Ninja) One of the first cloned copies of Star Wars which came out after the release of the George Lucas classic was Message from Outer Space, a strange and colorful Japanese film whose most memorable element was its spaceship in the form of a square-rigged sailing vessel, complete with […]
Read more "Swords of the Space Ark (1981)"
Supervillains. It’s not exactly obvious to the uninitiated, but there are two distinct types of supervillain: The Bond villain and The Comic Book villain. It seemed a strange coincidence when two studios came out with movies with supervillains as heroes at the same time, but Despicable Me‘s Gru is clearly the Bond-iest of Bond Villains… […]
Read more "Megamind (2010)"
(aka, Journey to an Unknown World) Children’s films. Why are they always such a plague? You really have to wonder: it can’t be that hard to make a film that will appeal to younger audiences and at the same time not be utterly terrible. Now I suppose part of my reaction to this Brazilian children’s […]
Read more "Aventuras com Tio Maneco [Adventures with Uncle Manuelo] (1971)"
(aka,Promare: Puromea, Promare 4D, Puromea 4D) I know, I know. I keep grumbling that all the animation out there looks like Pixar-lite. Unless it is anime, and then it looks like Miyazaki-lite. Yeah, yeah, there are quite a few animated films which break from these molds, but they are sadly rare. However, anime isn’t quite […]
Read more "Promare [Puromea] (2019)"
Wow. Yet another movie I never thought I would ever see. It was a very good weekend. And I found yet another of my Wish List movies on Wednesday. But I will tell you about that one later. Now a few years ago, at the time the Pacific Rim sequel came out, I wrote an essay […]
Read more "Sentinel 2099 (1995)"
(Literal Title: 28 1/2 Delusional Giant) I never thought I would see this film. I suppose I could blame Mamoru Oshii for this: after all, his rather strange career has gone in a lot of very odd directions since he made the films which are hailed as his big classics: The Ghost in the Shell […]
Read more "28 1/2 mousou no kyojin [28 1/2] (2010)"
When any new form of media arrives, there are always a lot of inventive ways devised to make use of them. Mind you, a lot of them don’t last very long. One of the odder ones — and, curiously, one that outlived the media type that spawned it — was the OVA. OVA stands for […]
Read more "Dragon’s Heaven (1988)"
(aka, GoShogun: The Time Stranger) There’s weird, then there’s Japanese Anime weird. And if you want proof you need look no further than GoShogun: The Time Étranger: here we have a children’s bright and colorful Giant robot television series, much in the vein of Voltron, which was adapted four years after the series ran into […]
Read more "Sengoku machine GoShogun: toki no ihôjin [GoShogun: The Time Étranger] (1985)"