Hairstyles And Space Guns

Whatever happened to bows? I mean the kind girls wear in their hair. I never see them anymore! Ribbons too, though I’d say that fits into the same category. Why throw such a wonderful idea by the wayside?
The same applies to skirts, but I’d better clarify; I mean neither the really short, tight skirts (those just look terrible), nor the really long ones (those are quite obviously old-fashioned, and went out of style for a reason). We’re talking about a nice, health median between the two.
Both bows and skirts are basically unicorns now; mystical things I always want to see, but never do.
In short, women’s fashion these days sucks; at least where I’m from, and I aknowledge that I could be totally off the mark and I’m just looking in the wrong places.
So women, why not take this opportunity and put a ribbon in your hair when you go out next? It looks so cute! I probably sound really stupid saying this, but I’m sticking to my guns here; both these things need a comeback.

Today I’m in a reviewing mood. Probably because I just saw these movies and want to talk about them; you know that feeling you get when you see something that you find interesting and you just want to share? Don’t get me wrong, it usually happens in a “HOLY CRAP THIS IS AMAZING I HAVE TO TELL SOMEONE” sort of way, but this is just something that tickled my fancy.

So there’s this manga in Japan called Gantz. If by some happenstance there is someone reading this who doesn’t know what a manga is, it’s a Japanese comic. I read what there was of it, and I was intrigued. Does it have an intricate plot or some fresh new story mechanic? Well, no. But I liked it anyway, and was thrilled when I saw this movie adaption. So here’s the basic synopsis:
It’s about two childhood friends, Kei and Kato, who get run over by a subway car while trying to save a homeless person and suddenly find themselves in an ordinary apartment room. It’s completely unfurnished, the only thing in it being a giant black ball and several other people, all who also “died” in some fashion. The black ball (named Gantz) starts playing old radio calisthenics music, and words appear on the surface, telling them their old lives are over and their new lives are his to control. It then shows them a picture of an alien, tells them to go kill it, and BOOM! Out of the ball pops several drawers of guns.

Oh come on, admit you’re at least a LITTLE interested by this point. Alright, here’s a few more details. One of the drawers holds a bunch of cases with black suits in them; eerily all tailor-made for each one of the people stuck in the room (though few of them even bother to put on such a ridiculous-looking thing). What they figure out later is that the suits give you super-human powers.

Oh yeah, and that girl above? She’s another main character. Her name is also Kei, but for the sake of distinction, I’ll use her surname, Kishimoto. She slit her wrists in a bathtub, but instead wound up in the room.

And the final detail: the guns. They look like crazy space guns, and when fired, they operate on a time-delay; after a few seconds, whatever they were fired at explodes (I know, cool, right?).

So anyway, these people are thrown out into the world and are forced to kill aliens. Some of the people don’t have much of a problem going about this (there are a fair amount of people in the room, and some of them are huge assholes), but some have a sort of moral dilemma. First off, are they dead? How’d they wind up in that room, why are they being told to go kill aliens, and is it alright to? Are the aliens invading? Do they NEED to be dealt with? Or are they just trying to live their lives, and is Gantz some kind of evil overlord who is making them kill the aliens for its own twisted ends?

The movies go into this a lot more than the manga, which in my opinion really got drowned underneath all the fan-service. Seriously, that comic basically seeps naked girls and pointless sex scenes out of it’s every pore (yeah, that’s a hell of a bizarre image I just gave you). The movies really lift the otherwise interesting story out of this mire, and go interesting places with it. There are two movies in this series by the way, Gantz and Gantz: Perfect Answer.

Once they kill the aliens, they get teleported back to the room where they get points based on their performance. When they get one hundred points, they… well, just go watch the movie, I’m not going to tell you EVERYTHING!
They get released back to their old lives after the scoring, but get teleported back again and again periodically to fight more aliens and gain more points, each time wondering if they’ll get killed or be forced to kill.

The movie has got some interesting things to say, it’s got kickass action sequences (all of which operate in a very manga/anime-like way, which is pretty cool. That scene on the train at the beginning of Perfect Answer? WHOA that was awesome!), and it’s got some nice characters; Kei, the morally-ambiguous selfish guy (less pronounced in the movies than the manga, but still there), Kato, the selfless hero who is desperately trying to provide for his little brother, and Kishimoto… the girl. Seriously, she’s basically just there as a love interest. She’s got a nice back-story and her character is certainly well-rounded, but she doesn’t serve much purpose in the Gantz arena. Not to say she’s useless in the plot, they just could have done more with her.

If you’ve got a spare evening or two, give these movies a shot. I watched them subtitled in Japanese (because the idea of watching an English dubbed live-action movie is DUMB) and I quite enjoyed the ride. Don’t expect anything too deep, but I’ll say this; this movie beats the crap out of a lot of blockbusters released here.

Less-than-eloquently yours,
Brendon “wants one of those suits” Regier


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About Brendon

I am a global terrorism warlord, meth kingpin, and hacker extraordinaire who has a moon base, at least fifteen wives, countless armies at my disposal, and a discover card. Oh, I also frequently make things up when I'm bored.

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