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"ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan! • Monster Zero x SciFi Japan

"ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Godzilla wasn't the only daikaiju to go stomping through Asia! From Rodan and Mothra to Yongarry and Gappa, discuss other JAPANESE/ASIAN kaiju films here!

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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby jellydonut25 » Sun Aug 16, 2015 2:57 am

This movie is definitely a mixed bag. It did a lot of the things I wanted it to do, but still managed to miss the mark. It's definitely stripped down, definitely simplified compared to the anime, and that all works to its favor, imho, but it's not a movie unto itself. Nothing that happens in roughly the first 10 minutes is resolved over the course of the next 90 minutes.

I liked the opening quite a bit. Everything up through the first titan attack was good, and I thought all the changes were for the better, especially in that there are a lot of things that are just flat-out dropped. Instead of teasing us with plot threads that will never get properly resolved (like Eren's dad having a super secret basement laboratory of ominousness), those kinds of things are just left by the wayside and the basic story becomes "After 100 years, the Titans re-appear and break through the first wall. 2 Years later, food is becoming more and more scarce and a last-ditch effort to reclaim the outer area must be undertaken or 'everyone' will starve." And while I personally REALLY like that simplified setup and story, it's not resolved. We go from this setup to a hard cut to the '2 years later' part and there's no training, no getting to know the characters, we're just kinda thrown in, and it's the night before we're driving to the town where things need to start to begin to think about maybe happening to try to move the plot forward...and yeah, I am choosing to be that nasty about the "starting to begin to think about maybe trying to happen to attempt to consider possibly moving the plot forward" because this movie ends around episode 8 of the anime (I had to look this up, because I couldn't remember).

SO, after this decent setup, and DECENT (but not good, not by a long shot) world-building, we get 30 minutes of I-Don't-Even-Know...just boredom. It was really, REALLY boring for about 30 minutes.

Then the Titans pop back in and we get some decent action and (mild spoiler for anyone not familiar with the source material)

The infamous "sex scene" that rustled some feathers was actually, imho, totally fine. For starters, it's not even a SEX SCENE, and if you're highly curious, well:


Also apparently pissing people off is the handling of Mikasa, which I found totally fine. She's still just an unemotional badass...so, aside from changing the things that happen to her character, I don't think they actually changed her character at all.

The problem with Mikasa, and really all the characters, is they (I think) tried to make them less whiny, and less awful than the source-material counterparts, but they just took out all the terrible things about them and forgot to INSERT anything. Armen being the brainy guy gets boiled down to one instant where he mentions the existence of the ocean, and aside from that...I dunno, he kinda looked like Eren and I even got them confused once or twice. The nerdy chick who wants to dissect titans is there, and is the ONLY character/actor who isn't just a dour, one-note pile of boredom, but I dunno who she is, who she works for, what her position is, what her purpose is (movie-world purpose; her 'our world' purpose is comic relief). There's some guy who's a jerk. And then aside from Eren, I couldn't tell you a single thing about any of the other characters in this movie except MAYBE one note: Potato girl, leader guy, chef, the fatty who swings an axe a lot, Not-the-leader-but-the-leader-via-example dude...and Eren is actually maybe a bit more likable here than in the anime, but again, he's just so stripped down, he doesn't feel like a whole, complete person. He's DEFINITELY less of a d-bag though, and he seems way more altruistic and just wanting to do the right thing and fight the good fight and be the good guy than a whiny butthead looking for personal revenge. The problem there is, that's just not interesting. There's nothing interesting driving him or anybody, except for Dr. Dissection, as I call her, and she's not there enough to punch up the human proceedings.

So, the plot is a mixed bag, and the characters are just BORING, how do the Titans fare?
Wonderfully. They are excellently realized, really terrifying, and playfully gory. The Colossal Titan in particular is just awe-inspiring. I wanted so much more of that, because it's so well-done. There are some little twists and things to them, that I dunno if I didn't notice them in the anime because I hated the anime, or if they really weren't there or weren't emphasized as much, but they are dirtier, shabbier, scarier, and way more eerie. If you thought from the previews that their expressions looked a little derpy, I can assure you, it's used to excellent effect of 'vacant malevolence' in the actual film.

I don't know much of Higuchi's previous directorial work, but it seems he's really only actually interested in the Titans, and everything else is secondary or less to him. It's a shame too, because everything is THERE for this to be a good adaptation of a mediocre-to-bad source: it's stripped down and leaves a lot of the non-essential jibber-jabber to the side, the Titans are spectacular, and the characters are stripped of their worst aspects....but we don't really feel anything except some vague fun at staring at the effects and gore in action, which is just as well accomplished via a short like Giant God Warrior Invades Japan, or something.

And it really, REALLY isn't a movie unto itself, like, at all. It REQUIRES part 2 in a way I'm not sure if I've seen in a movie in a long, long time. I mean, I know most if not all movies filmed and released in this back-to-back way end on cliffhangers, but most if not all of those also clearly give us a beginning, middle and end in the first movie and then tack on an additional stinger to leave us wanting more, almost like they do "Beginning, middle, end...beginningofthenextmoviesmashcutend" This is just "Beginning...middlemovie'sover! Tune in next time for the thrilling conclusion!"

This might wind up being a more scathing review than I actually feel if Part 2 ends things in a satisfying manner, but honestly, aside from the gory titan things, this "movie" was just sleep-inducing nothingness.

EDIT: I can't believe I failed to mention how much I wound up disliking the overall aesthetic of the cinematography. At a certain point (roughly the 40-minute mark) the movie slips into "everything must be grey" and never pulls itself out. It's muted and dull and the amount of gray sky just kinda gave it a dreary, unpleasant feeling. Dour.


And also, like I said before, my overall impression wasn't as negative as this review wound up sounding, but when I collected my thoughts here, the amount of problems I had just really started to pile up...imagine then, if you care to, how GOOD the Titan stuff is if, after all these complaints, I still found it worth the watch (though worth another watch ever again??? I dunno...)
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Hybrid Gojira » Sun Aug 16, 2015 5:21 am

I dunno, I can't say I felt the characters were weak. Though Higuchi dropped several elements (and even characters) from the source material, the movie felt like the show did. There is also the issue of being overstuffed with characters - movies have indefinitely shorter run-times compared to the anime, so it's hard to flesh out characters. The one dropped ball so far was probably Armin - he doesn't do enough that I care about him, but he is supposed to be a central character in the movie. It's really the connection between Mikasa and Eren that drives the whole thing, but it IS kind of odd that
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Gargantuan Gargantua » Sun Aug 16, 2015 1:53 pm

Thanks for the review(s).
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby kiryugoji04 » Sun Aug 16, 2015 2:44 pm

Just finished it. Loved it. It's not perfect but it was a really fun ride and really quite horrifying. Sometimes the compositing was a little dodgy but when the effects work they really work. I wasn't very fond of the soundtrack though and it broke my heart to learn that it had been composed by Sagisu Shiro, whose work on the Eva franchise is amazing. No idea what happened here.

Still, I'm looking forward to catching this in the theater next month!
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Gargantuan Gargantua » Sun Aug 16, 2015 4:03 pm

Well! I also just finished the movie. I love being in Japan... :o

Pros : It went by fast. Good pacing. Sick of long movies these days. The titans are pretty awesome except the baby titan. I felt that was kind of a hacky bit that reminded me of the Dawn of the Dead remake's baby zombie. I enjoyed the little chuckling of the titans as they walked around. I was so bummed though they didn't show more of that tiny potato head titan that went gleefully bouncing through the barbed wire fence. The model work was really top notch too and it never felt like it was the usual sound stage we are used to seeing. Mikasa is still a rock hard b!tch so I don't know why she is getting so much hate. I thought her character was in better form than Eren's by a long shot.


Cons : They did actually make it so you don't really give a sh*t about any of the characters for the most part. I thought Eren suffered the most since he is the main star.

I felt there was a blatant rip off from "the Host." The scene where all the people are locked inside the church where their arms are reaching out through the bars and the blood pours out from under the door was the exact same scene. I don't hate it but I felt it was a little shameless. Yes I thought the score was hit or miss. I thought it was effective right at the start of the Titan's rampage but throughout the movie it was all over the place.

Overall I liked it a lot and will probably watch it again. It isn't the greatest thing to come out of Japan but I definitely feel AoT fan's are just being douche-mongers a bit. Like the "sex" scene. That website I posted a couple pages back made it sound like they just cut to a random scene of people banging like dogs. It actually had some context behind it and oh ya, no sex... lol Also the girl who played Hiana. Ayame Misaki... I wanna marry that woman. Too bad... Same with Hans too. :)

https://instagram.com/misakiayame/?hl=en
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Dr Kain » Mon Aug 17, 2015 12:35 am

I actually watched the first 13 episodes to the anime today and they were A LOT better the second time around. I haven't watched them since the BD first came out last year. I still think they do drag things out a little bit longer than necessary though, but at least it isn't one chapter per episode bull**** that DBZ and One Piece did/has been doing.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Hybrid Gojira » Mon Aug 17, 2015 12:22 pm

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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Gargantuan Gargantua » Mon Aug 17, 2015 12:39 pm

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I can't find a good image of him but he pops in and out of the manga.

Well... incoming spoiler regarding the manga. However it probably won't make the movie anyways...



So maybe he might be on the way... (I doubt it) I think you can hear him talk in the movie too. I swear he was saying "yoshi...? yoshi?"

How crazy would it be if they were so mad at the fan reaction they just make Mr. Potato Head Titan run around trying to tell people about the Watchtower and has no interest in eating people. "I'd like to talk to you about our lord and savior?"

"What are you saying? A titan just talked to you, didn't try to eat you?" - Armin
"Yeah it was really weird. He just kept talking about Jesus then tried to sell me a magazine subscription..." - Eren
"Wow that is quite an abnormal titan... I MUST HAVE HIM." - Hans


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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby jellydonut25 » Mon Aug 17, 2015 5:39 pm

...nothing in that last post made any semblance of sense to me.

I feel like I'm missing something.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby XvGojira » Mon Aug 17, 2015 6:19 pm

Something about a crossover with The Book of Mormon or something. I'm not entirely sure. My head kind of hurts now, I think I'm going to lay down.




Any one else smell burnt toast?
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Gargantuan Gargantua » Mon Aug 17, 2015 7:30 pm

How dare you. My long winded humor was a home run.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Dr Kain » Mon Aug 17, 2015 11:18 pm

We spent the night watching the third disc which contains the beautifully animated sequences with the female Titan. Wow, that was incredible to watch. Also, I just realized something that has to do with something that is revealed after the anime's ending. Anyway, the court sequence is still down right awesome and Levi is easily one of the series' best characters. I do have to say, Zoe is actually pretty cool too.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby kiryugoji04 » Wed Aug 19, 2015 9:10 pm

Watched the movie for a second time last night. Loved it the second time around. Still some problems with it every now and again but overall I came away feeling much more satisfied.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Dr Kain » Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:36 am

I need to ask this about the movie. So how do they deal with the fact that NO ONE IS ASIAN except Mikasa? Did they even bother to make Annie and Krista blonde?
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby jellydonut25 » Thu Aug 20, 2015 2:14 am

They're all Asian.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Dr Kain » Thu Aug 20, 2015 9:56 am

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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby kiryugoji04 » Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:50 pm

It's almost like the movie and the show are their own separate takes on the material.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Dr Kain » Thu Aug 20, 2015 3:30 pm

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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Hybrid Gojira » Thu Aug 20, 2015 4:34 pm

Eh, I'm not an Attack on Titan purist. If you are a super fan of the anime or manga, you will probably be upset at some of the changes. I actually think you need to have less characters in a movie because otherwise it becomes too bloated. The only change I found really odd was
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby jellydonut25 » Fri Aug 21, 2015 1:15 am

I don't get why some people are upset at the casting of Asians, or changing/adding/dropping some characters. It's an adaptation. You're never going to do a straight adaptation of something, otherwise, why ADAPT it at all? Why not just let the thing exist as-is? Also, there's nothing inherently WHITE about any of the characters...or Asian for that matter...yeah, it "robs" Mikasa of being the last Asian on Earth, but the show never does anything particularly interesting with that bit of knowledge, nor does it do anything interesting with them all being white...race is irrelevant to the story.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby eabaker » Fri Aug 21, 2015 2:51 pm

And, let's be realistic here, it's not like Toho has a particularly impressive record when it comes to finding good occidental actors.
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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Dr Kain » Fri Aug 21, 2015 7:17 pm

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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby lhb412 » Sat Aug 22, 2015 12:13 am

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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby jellydonut25 » Sat Aug 22, 2015 3:27 pm

Gills.

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Re: "ATTACK ON TITAN" - Man-Eating Giants Invade Japan!

Postby Dr Kain » Sat Aug 22, 2015 4:45 pm

Except Peter Parker can't be black. He IS a white guy. However, I think we have already had this conversation.

BTW, the anime only covers up to most of Volume 8. All of the important and good stuff occurs after.
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