Appleseed and Appleseed Ex Machina director Shinji Aramaki is back with a CG-animated adaptation of Space Pirate Captain Harlock. This third trailer (all in Japanese, so… hopefully you either speak it, or you’re familiar enough with the anime that you have some idea of what’s going on). I never did, and my Japanese is basically non-existent, so I’m totally lost… but it sure looks pretty.
The film is out in Japan this September, but no signs of an American release at this time. It’s all but guaranteed to make it here on video, eventually, though, so if you’re a fan, just hang in there.
If you really want to spoil it for yourself, there’s about twelve minutes of footage online here.
When Keanu Reeves was announced as starring in a new take on the story, it was immediately obvious that it wasn’t going to be a historically faithful version. Then we started hearing about “witches and giants” and I guess they’d decided to chuck all realism out the window. The results look alright, I guess, but a little too heavy on that bland, plasticky big-budget action-adventure CG look that Hollywood has been cranking out too much of lately.
The film also stars Hiroyuki Sanada and Rinko Kikuchi. It hits theaters on December 25th this year — in 3D, of course.
Okay, if you didn’t watch that yet, watch it. (And since somebody is going to ask, yes, I loved it.)
The reveal at the end, for those of you who haven’t seen promotional images before, is that Hiccup is older. Five years older, in fact.
From the official synopsis: “While Astrid, Snoutlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the island’s new favorite contact sport), the now inseparable pair journey through the skies, charting unmapped territories and exploring new worlds. When one of their adventures leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace.”
As writer-director Dean DeBlois explained to Variety earlier this year: “At the end of last film, all these Vikings who were previously somewhat landlocked are now on the backs of dragons so the entire Northern Hemisphere opens up to them. And with that Hiccup’s curiosity increases, the map expands and inevitably they are going to come across new dragons, new cultures.” Hiccup soon “discovers a larger conflict brewing between humans and dragons and he finds himself at the center of it.”
It’s a pretty brave move, to redesign characters from a popular film like this, and I think it’s a good sign that they might actually take some chances with this sequel and give us something original enough to stand next to the original.