Anime Meta-Review


Yamato : Farewell to Space Battleship Yamato in the name of Love


By Date




Title Info

  • type: movie
  • grade: flawed
  • made: unknown
  • Review created: Recently, but I didn't record the date.
  • mod: none

Say friend, are you willing to consider the concept of making a spaceship by getting an antique Japanese naval vessel and putting a rocket motor on the back? If so then you've passed the first hurdle in watching this title. The ship in question is about to be junked (for being embarassing?) when an earth spaceship picks up a cryptic distress call. It's enough for them, but earth command (the old fuddy-duddies) are not convinced. The solution is obvious, get the old gang (presumably from a long TV series) back together, mutiny, steal the ship, and do it themselves. As it turns out the distress call is sufficiently serious, heralding an evil conquering enemy from the depths of space. Once again the grand old Yamato is must stand against overwhelming forces.

However be aware that this is the final yamato movie so a great number of characters are `concluded'. The dial is set firmly on the noble sacrifice / space opera scale (not unexpected from Leiji Matsumoto) and there's a great deal of `war philosophy'. Personally that bunk turns my stomach, so if you feel the same expect troubled sailing ahead. This is also made more difficult by the fact that while they're making speeches they ignore the enemy (who politely waits). In other words the logic of what you're seeing is `bent' in favor of simplified dramatics, which can make this a bit tortured to watch. This includes the solitary female cast member getting to make two `death' scenes and one `noble injury' scene...which is in fact largely all she gets to do. If you've seen the whole of the TV series you're probably much more tolerant and understand the basis. But taken by itself it is way too much.

This is not helped by the animation. Don't get me wrong, it's obvious that the very best effort was made. However the attempt to be `epic' really makes you aware of how dated the animation is. On top of that the technical design (while having a high babble content) doesn't make much sense, and the battles are tactically illogical and not that entertaining. Being a Matsumoto pic. the character designs, especially for women, are pretty strange. The final straw is the dub which is, at best, stilted and lifeless. This may have played a part, perhaps the concept of noble sacrifice sounds better in Japanese. Personally I'm quite pleased that it does nothing for me.

I couldn't find any reviews on my regular sites, although Lord Carnage has a review for star blazers, which is what the TV series was aired as in America (and here I think).


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:27 WST 2009