Live-action sci-fi movie based on a 1973 Japanese animé of the same name (Shinzo Ningen Casshân). Theme song by Utada Hikaru.Live-action sci-fi movie based on a 1973 Japanese animé of the same name (Shinzo Ningen Casshân). Theme song by Utada Hikaru.Live-action sci-fi movie based on a 1973 Japanese animé of the same name (Shinzo Ningen Casshân). Theme song by Utada Hikaru.
When seeing the trailer for Casshern i felt that it was a must-see. I'm admittedly a sucker for both beautiful CGI-work as well as comic book actioners. Casshern certainly delivers when it comes to CGI, the whole movie is made entirely with bluescreen and most of the time it looks superb although of course very artificial. However, the action-part is not what i expected. This is not an action-film, it has a few (rather short and not very interesting) action scenes, but mostly it's drama and quiet dialogue with enormous backdrops of CGI-landscapes.
Many compare this with Equilibrium, and the similarities are easy to see. But while Equilibrium was more or less a straightforward action-film with a story and heavy focus on the action-scenes, this is more a drama with elements of action. The main problem with Casshern in my opinion is that the story itself is a train-wreck. I don't know if maybe too much gets "lost in translation", but i had a very hard time understanding what the film-makers wanted with this. The story is a mess and most of the points get lost somewhere along the way never to be seen again. Unfortunately not too uncommon in Asian cinema. And this is a bad thing in Casshern, especially since the movie is story-driven and doesn't focus on action (which could have helped).
So, what's the verdict? Casshern looks beautiful but makes no sense, and the pace is unbearably slow at times. Also the movie is overly long, one could easily cut 20 minutes out without really losing any cohesion (perhaps the story would even be more intelligible without so many slow scenes to muddle it?). I would give this 5/10 for trying, but the next time something like this is done i think the script will have to be reworked a couple of times. Equilibrium is no master-piece but when it comes to 1984-inspired dystopia it is far superior.
- Oct 28, 2004