Jiro (Keisuke Koide) meets a mystery girl (Haruka Ayase) on his birthday! One year later, they meet again. It is a shock to Jiro as she confesses and turns out to be a cyborg from the future that Jiro has sent to him as a present! Getting along with this mischievous cyborg girl friend, Jiro falls in love but she has no feelings at all. All of a sudden a disastrous earthquake his Tokyo, the cyborg saves Jiro’s life by sacrificing herself and the ultimate mystery of cyborg is going to be revealed.
2008 – Certificate IIA – Japanese Film
8.5 out of 10
Because I’m a fairly stupid person I sometimes buy DVDs or BDs (Blu-ray discs) that I’ve already got a copy of. I also occasionally upgrade from a DVD copy of a film or TV series to a BD one, or buy an alternative version because it’s longer or uncut. This means I gradually accumulate a supply of discs I no longer want. I used to sell these on eBay, but mostly I can’t be bothered to anymore so just get rid of them via MusicMagpie instead. The latter doesn’t pay a lot, but it’s quick and easy to dispose of them this way. Sadly, its home collection service is, (from my first attempt to use the latter), entirely shit. I waited about at home from 8:00am to 8:00pm on the relevant day for someone to come and collect my parcel, but no one came. It’s not like I live in an invisible castle floating in the sky, stuck in a parallel reality and out of phase with the regular universe, protected by a high (electrified) fence, a pack of hungry attack dogs and a set of visitor traps that even Indiana Jones would think twice about tackling; I live in a flat with a clearly marked buzzer on the outside wall by the door. And in a rare bit of good, British urban design, there’s always space outside to park too, without fear of getting a ticket or being clamped. I e-mailed the company a couple of days ago to find out what the problem was, but I’ve yet to get a reply.
Despite it’s time-travelling, disaster, sci-fi, slapstick, action-movie clothing, this is really a romantic comedy, the sort where nothing else really has any real world consequences outside of the two main characters. Get caught in the middle of a restaurant shooting? Big Deal. Doing your Terminator ‘thing’ in the middle of a busy road junction? So what? Your capital city gets destroyed? Whatever. It’s another one of those movies that only Japan seems to be able to produce, where this eclectic mixture of genres not only works together but feels entirely normal. In a damming indictment of our screwed up, star gossip culture, our hero, the nice but exceedingly dull and boring student Jiro, has become a bit of a celebrity in the future. This is enough for someone to want to travel back in time and meet him. Or something like that anyway. The special effects are decent enough and the story is fun in its own way, but it’s a film that gets its kicks from frequently and suddenly changing its mood. The scene where they travel to Jiro’s home village is really rather touching. It also has a dance-off scene that’s pretty cool too. The ending is a bit of muddle, as if the writers were suddenly struggling with how to sort out all the loose ends, but it’s a fab and fun mash-up of a movie, full of little Terminator references and well worth watching. Haruka Ayase is very cute too; not at all like Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The soundtrack varies from forgettable to okay, with the use of some pop songs filling in the gaps. J-pop is an interesting beast…
The trailer isn’t bad, although it does underplay the ever-changing mood of the film. The use of some questionable music over the action probably doesn’t help; then again, maybe it’s very appropriate given the ‘atmospheric turbulence’ of the movie. For some reason, YouTube has cut the second line off the subtitles; it probably doesn’t make a lot of difference though.
Recommended for dull students, both geeks and nerds, cyborgs (and other artificial life forms) and teachers who like to throw bits of chalk about. (Does that still happen these days or is chalk now classed as an offensive weapon?)
1 cat, no chainsaws or decapitations. A body does get severed in two though.
Top badass moment? I’m not sure someone/something that’s programmed to be what’s basically badass can actually then do anything that should count here, which leaves us with wusey Jiro. Sadly the latter fails to do anything remotely badass for the entire movie, which leaves me with a bit of a constitutional crisis. I’ll need to consult a solicitor before I’m prepared to comment further. Raoul, Jiro’s pet cat (not the lizard), puts in a couple of excellent performances; his eating from the dish was especially nuanced and controlled.
“Listen, and understand. That terminator is out there. It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.” That reminds me, we’ve been going through a bit of a restructure at work. It’s not been a hugely enjoyable experience. I guess in the long-term it’s the ‘right’ thing to do, in the same way that the large-scale, post-war slum clearances in areas well-known for high levels of social need, led to their replacement with modern, high rise flats, which are now well-known for, em, high levels of social need, (okay so it’s probably not the best analogy on a wide range of levels), but it still sucks. By some strange quirk of fate I seem to have survived this process and now find myself in a ‘job-enriched’ environment. Considering my almost total lack of ambition and ability this is indeed a strange turn of events. At the moment I’m finding I’m saying good-bye to a lot of colleagues, some of who I’ve known for years and have so much respect for and many of whom have probably helped me cover up my singular lack of talent in the past. (What can I say? The only thing I’m really good at is bigging myself up on the back of others’ hard work.) It’s all pretty depressing though. I want to be angry about it, but I can’t identify anyone or anything to get angry with, which makes it all even more frustrating. Maybe what’s going on at work now is a bit like this film and it will spawn a hugely popular, multi-million pound franchise that goes on for years and years. I look forward to the time when I walk into a room and people look at me in awe, huddle together in groups and in hushed tones say to one another, “you know who he works for, don’t you?”
1984 – Certificate: R – United States
I love this film! It’s certainly one of my 50, all-time favourite movies and a genuine classic. The theme tune is iconic too. Arnold Schwarzenegger is so perfect for the part of the Terminator and it’s great to see someone in a film who looks after his body as well as I look after mine. Honestly, at times it felt like I was looking into a mirror, which was a bit disconcerting and I have to say did spoil the film slightly for me. I think Arnie’s a bit taller than I am though. I’ve seen this movie loads of times, but this was my first viewing of it on Blu-ray. Reference material it’s not, but it did look great; a lot more colour and detail than I can remember from watching it on DVD. It’s always been a gloomy, muddy looking film, but the format does manage to clean up the details a lot. The effects still look good most of the time too, not bad for a film that’s 28 years old. It doesn’t look especially dated either, well as long as you don’t look at Sarah Connor’s hair.
Recommended for everyone, even those who don’t like this sort of film. Actually, those sort of people should be forced to watch it.
No cats and no decapitations. The Terminator’s head does get a bit stripped and squashed though.
Top badass moment? If any film offers a lot of choice, it’s this one. Anyway, I’m picking the “I’ll be back” scene. Be honest, who hasn’t wanted to do something like that when you haven’t got your way in a shop? Well okay, then going on to slaughter everyone that works there is probably a bit over the top, even for me, but trashing the place with a car certainly makes a point about the customer always being right. Consumer power at its best!