Anime Meta-Review


Big Wars


By Date




Title Info

  • type: movie
  • grade: flawed
  • Other elements of this title:
    • This title has been commercially released in Australia.
    • This title may offend the sensitive.
  • made: 1993
  • Review created: A while ago, i'll revise it eventually.
  • mod: none

"Okay soldiers listen up. We're fighting a race called `the gods', they are superior to us in both technology and numbers. In addition they have the ability to infect your mind with visions, driving you insane, which means that anyone around you could be a subverted spy, insane, or both. What do you mean `no thanks?'".

This anime tells the story of one skirmish in the epic sci-fi battle, on a terraformed mars, between good old humanity and the race called the `gods'. We follow a commander who is given command of a brand new ship (more on that later) and given a suicide mission. Still thanks to a bit of cloak and dagger, although not without cost to himself, it looks like there may be a chance for an important victory. Fairly boring plot? well, it's a fairly boring anime, having some suprisingly flat drama leading up to some suprisingly flat action. Admittedly this is not helped by the dub, which is competent but delivered without much energy. The human drama additionally attempts to combine sex scenes and tragedy, but the strange pacing, weak dialog and flat dub makes this a limited success. The action scenes focus around mankinds primary weapons, which is basically a big battleship on wheels. The aliens have sleek, fast moving, efficient battlecraft (oh, and they all look like beautiful women, of course) and we have big metal coffins on wheels with `anti-aircraft artillery'. The technical design is interesting, but the decision to make the human weapons mobile fortresses means the battles are very static and largely boring. There are lots of shots, with some repeated footage, of alien craft filling the sky while the human ships act like battleships. If you've seen any bad WW2 movie then you know how it goes. This continues into a ground fight which also pits mobile but weird aliens against clunky human power armor.

So the character designs, which look interesting, are under- developed, the drama is flat, the combat tedious and the conclusion very war movie and fairly predictable. The animation is quite acceptable, but not particularly impressive, and the action scenes do have their moments. If you really like gung-ho war action, or want to see some interesting technical designs (albeit low on the `cool' factor) with a retro-tech feel then you might enjoy this...but most normal people should avoid it. Negative points for the symptom of alien possession being nymphomania (proudly proclaimed on the box cover) and the concept of a several hundred meter metal brick on wheels being given a `stealth' mission. The warning is due partly to the sex (but don't rely on that making the movie interesting) but mostly for the violence.

The Anime Critic has a review of the title, but has few nice things to say. Noting that the drama and action elements conflict. A small but very concise review from Lord Carnage who also mentions a design similarity to "venus wars". There is a sizable review from THEM who obviously tried their best to enjoy it, but put the boot in with, "pause a moment before choosing this one and make sure there's nothing else on that's good".


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:15 WST 2009