Movie Review: Space Pirate Captain Harlock (PG13)

Review / Animation


110 minutes/Opens July 17

2½ **

Those who did not follow Leiji Matsumoto's 1970s Japanese manga series that this film is based on will find it difficult to immerse themselves in the complex story.

Set in the distant future where humans have long built colonies on different planets in outer space, the story is centred on Captain Harlock, a seemingly immortal man who is trying to stop an authoritarian government known as the Gaia Coalition from forbidding non-elite humans from returning to Earth, which is now deemed a sacred planet. One way of doing that is to travel through space and install 100 "dimensional oscillators" so that he can then turn back time. Feeling lost yet?

It does not help that the English-dubbed version of the film is bogged down by numerous geeky, tedious-sounding terms such as "jovian accelerator" and "kaleido converger matrix".

However, the visuals are impressive. Grand and immaculately detailed, the animation looks ultra realistic and the battle scenes are explosive and action-packed.

Given all the sci-fi jabber, though, it looks like this one is for fans only.

This article was first published on July 16, 2014.
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