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3.9 out of 5 stars
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3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 30 August 2012
Space Battleship Yamato is nothing short of a master piece.

This is particularly going to be the case for every fan of the original Star Blazers animated series that came out in the late 70's and early 80's. It was before it's time then and it's still incredibly amazing today.

This live action movie captured the spirit of the show fantastically. The actors were all superb and the attention to detail was incredible.

As they were only commissioned to do a single film, I thought the adaptation of the Gamalons(completely changed from the ones we knew in the animated films. There's still inklings of that race but there heavily modified for the movie), was incredible and understood the need to change them to fit with the limited time frame of the movie.

The action scenes that are jam packed into this movie are incredible. As a kid I always used to love the combat scenes in Starblazers and I was amazed that when watching this movie I was actually wishing for more of the charcter interactions and story arc. However I was tickled pink to say the least with the amazing combat scenes. In essence this is a battle ship and I felt the pace of the movie was superb and really captured that in the heat of battle feeling.

My only gripe with the entire film was that I wanted more, which essentially means it was a terrific movie. (All good movies should leave you feeling this way).

I'm hoping that there might be a follow up movie to capture the next season of Starblazers and perhaps even a third(well most movie houses seem to go for trilogies these days).

Seriously, if your a fan of Starblazers, then get this now. Please don't download it, buy it to support these guys, it's been the best movie purchase I've made in years. In fact I'll even put it above my collectors box set of Blade Runner and that's got to be saying something to the hard core SciFi fans. I'll be watching this again and again, it's in a nutshell, breathtaking and an amazing experience to see a Scifi classic given live action status.

Way to go
Director & VFX: Takashi Yamazaki
Producer: Toshiaki Nakazawa
Original Story: Yoshinobu Nishizaki
Screenplay: Shimako Sato
Cast: Takuya Kimura (from SMAP, Love and Honor, Hero), Meisa Kuroki (Crows Zero, Vexille, The Sword of Alexander), Toshiro Yanagiba, Shinichi Tsutsumi (Princess Toyotomi, A Lone Scalpel, Villon's Wife, Maiko Haaaan!!!)

I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for keeping the magic of Starblazers alive and well.

Sean A. Curtin

PS. I've seen some people give this movie less than glamarous reviews and all I can say is that they mustn't be Starblazers fans. Those that are, are going to love this movie. Those that arn't well if your serious SciFi fans, watch the three seasons of Starblazers before you watch this movie. Then maybe, you'll understand.
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on 27 January 2015
I absolutely loved this film! It reminded me of Star Wars, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica and especially Space Above: and Beyond, but at the same time had it's own unique Japanese style. I really enjoyed the character development and the sense of honour and tragic heroism. Thoroughly enjoyed the special effects in the battle scenes, which didn't leave the viewer totally dazzled and bewildered. Must admit I was crying like a baby by the end. Wonderful!
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on 20 October 2013
Two problems with the live action Space Battleship Yamato. Its based off an anime series, and this is one of the best anime to live adaptations I've seen, at the same time the writing hasn't done enough to ensure the film stands on its own two feet. Many aspect are left open, in a way that suggests "if you enjoyed this, you'll love the series". Leaving this film in a state of limbo for large stretches. The second problem is the flat out ridiculous indulgence in melodrama during the last 10 minutes, taking any sting out of the tail. But it's still a fun watch, without revisiting the classics there aren't many new sci-fi films that trade in space opera and spaceships. With its mix of Star Wars, Star Trek(TV) and Mass Effect (VG), it's refreshingly old-school and refreshingly simplistic. It just suffers from a lack of its own fully realised identity.
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on 3 December 2015
Well I wasn't entirely what to expect as many of these films that insert live action to cartoon films often don't have the same feeling as the originals. Now in this case it neither succeeds, but more especially does not fail. It is a way to wind away the hours and a good deal has been done with a film that does not have the backing of a major film seen generally in the West. I did like the way some of the characters build and their interactions. Also for those not expecting it, namely my Son, it is subtitled and like many films of this genre over-dubbing English would simply not have worked. If you are prepared to read the subtitles, see the characters, and listen to the tone of the voice it helps establish the emotion at the time. At the end of the day, I enjoyed it, my Son ended up enjoying it; it is not a US Blockbuster type film and it is not one of those cheesy US made for television films. It is from my youth one of those better than the rest B Movies with credible actors, some good special effects and a plot that generally builds.
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on 20 August 2013
Probably one of the best sci-fi films I've seen for a while, with great visuals and some awesome action that should please any viewer. Given the recent rebirth of Star Trek, and ongoing success of Hollywood sci-fi and visually appealing blockbusters, it's a pleasure to see that Japan has its own answer to this trend. The biggest budget film in Japanese history matches up to its western counterparts and offers a fresh look at space exploration.

One important thing to note is the film is very much a product of Japanese culture. The scripting is often over-dramatic, and the acting quite exaggerated, but if you can accept these as stylistic differences to the standard Hollywood blockbuster, then Space Battleship Yamato is definitely an essential in your sci-fi epic collection!
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Based on the Japanese anime series of the 70s shown on US TV as Starblazers, Toho’s lavish 2010 live-action version of Space Battleship Yamato takes the show’s rather silly premise and runs with it with unexpected success. It’s the kind of thing that you can usually only get away with in animation, but amazingly they manage to make it play with flesh and blood actors as the last survivors of a losing war with an alien race that has rendered the earth’s surface uninhabitable who, naturally, send a refurbished WW2 battleship into space in a last ditch effort to save the planet. That’s right, a WW2 battleship. Yet somehow it creates just enough of a credible near-apocalyptic world where anything that can be salvaged and made into a weapon will be to sell the aerodynamically unfeasible idea and does an impressive enough job of distilling the story arc of the entire series into one 138-minute film without feeling it’s trying to pack in too much that it emerges as one of the most entertaining sci-fi spectacles of recent years.

Despite its surprisingly modest $22m budget, it’s an often spectacular production that makes you wonder how Toho could manage to make an epic sci-fi film with plenty of (for the most part) excellent special effects and a large ensemble cast for less than a quarter of what David Fincher spent on The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, let along the kind of money a Hollywood summer blockbuster would cost. Aside from a few bits of not-quite-finished-looking compositing in the alien planet scene there’s nothing that looks cut-rate or bargain basement here: Toho have certainly come a long way since their sci-fi films of the 50s and 60s.

Equally surprising is that it’s not an attempt to start a new franchise but a very definite one-off where any of the main characters can die and many of them do. In many ways the uncompromisingly high body count not only shows a complete disregard for the possibility of sequels but in a strange way acts as a more satisfying tribute to the crew of the WW2 battleship Yamato whose lives were thrown away in a futile gesture than the controversial 2005 war film that bore its name. Certainly there are a few surprisingly touching moments along the way on their suicide mission which may just owe more to propaganda and giving the last survivors of humanity a chance to die with hope than to any realistic prospect of success, which is a weightier approach than you might expect in a film about a WW2 battleship that’s been turned into a spaceship. Not that this is a groundbreaking drama or as relentlessly grim as the rebooted Battlestar Galactica TV series – it’s an old-fashioned story with plenty of clichéd situations and the usual war movie stock characters (when one talks about his family you know he won’t make it past the next two reels), but one that’s done right, striking the right balance between tried and trusted formula and the kind of old-fashioned craftsmanship that makes it feel more like an upgrade than a retread. It’s not without its flaws – Tsutomu Yamazaki’s dying captain veers between looking paralysed or just plain bored stiff with the whole thing long before he’s sent to sick bay – but its strengths are more than pleasing enough to outweigh them.

The Blu-ray offers a nice transfer of the slightly extended 138-minute version with English subtitles and a few extras – a couple of trailers and several special effects comparisons.
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on 2 June 2015
Saw this in Japan on release over there and thought it was absolutely stunning. The Japanese audience were glued to the screen as the Yamato made her way towards the planet Iscandar... this was their Star Trek, and the live action film felt just like the anime.
The effaects are beautiful, and the melancholy reworking of the theme tune fits the concept much more than the funky '70s original ever did.

I know that some American reviewers were annoyed because it was an all-Japanese cast and used the Japanese names... they seemed to forget that "Uchuu Senkan Yamato" was around before it became "Star Blazers".

Anyway, the Manga DVD is a great transfer with easy to read subtitles and good sound.
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on 17 May 2016
Total fun and nonsense...if carefully thought out plots and plausibility of even the slimmest variety are your bag, then avoid this...if however you like unbridled use of special effects not really caring if it's silly or not then do not hesitate...
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on 3 August 2016
The action sequences are good, but the acting between these scenes is dreadful. There are long drawn out scenes of meaningful looks and scowls that seem to go on for ages. Very much a Far East Star Trek feel.
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on 22 November 2013
Live action adaptations of animated classics tend to go quite badly wrong regardless of where the original source material was created (I'm looking at you Aeon Flux) When then an Anime has a plethora of fans in the east and the west, albeit under different titles the challenge is even greater. Yamato succeeds, it's an exciting and beautiful tribute to a great anime. The battle sequences are full of light and colour and the effects designers have really gone to town to make sure the minute details are there. I give it four stars not for a lack of quality but because it suffers from the same syndrome any film does when it attempts to boil down a 25+ episode series into two hours, lack of character development, "I've just met you, now I hate you, I love you now lets settle down." That aside the meat of the story is well told and hangs together nicely, the subtitles are good if sometimes a little wooden and the music is top notch. All in all a good film.
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