0 Items | £0.00


Jun Awazu's Planzet movie

Wednesday 22nd August 2012

Matt Kamen on Jun Awazu’s resistance movie Planzet


When the alien FOS came to Earth, humanity was all but wiped out. Faced with overwhelming technology and sheer extraterrestrial might, our cities were devastated, governments fell and the population was left decimated. The survivors united, building the Diffuser, a device that stalled the aliens’ assault and gave us chance to devise a more permanent plan. When Taishi Akeshima’s father was killed early on in the invasion though, the young man was driven only to survive at all costs, desperate for a chance at retribution. It’s now 2053, and the remnants of mankind have created a last-ditch effort to reclaim the planet – Plan Zed. With it, we have one final shot at survival and Taishi has his chance at revenge. Unfortunately, it involves abandoning the scant defence provided by the Diffuser. Is a small chance at victory worth risking total extermination for the human race?

With themes of post-apocalyptic desperation running throughout, Planzet brings together a mix of conflicted characters, unusual enemies and impressive mecha. However, unlike your average ‘giant robots vs aliens’ anime, Planzet presents its visions of clanging titans in incredibly detailed 3D CGI. Despite the success of films such as Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children – though that particular example had a healthy crossover appeal with gaming fans – it’s still an unusual animation style to see in Japanese movies. Most anime fans will likely be familiar with CG work being incorporated into more traditional looking anime, rather than Pixar-style movies but Planzet’s director Jun Awazu is looking to change that. Awazu doesn't have quite the same career trajectory as many figures in the Japanese film industry, be it live action or anime, and is one of a select few directors championing a progression in computer generated animation.

Awazu’s prior movie, 2005’s Negadon, the Monster from Mars, was one of a scant few examples of feature-length computer animation to come from the country (even then, “feature-length” was a meagre 53 minutes). Negadon become something of an indie hit, notable for its detailed imagery and over the top plot of a giant, Godzilla-esque creature rampaging across Japan after scientists transport a mysterious pod found on the Red Planet to Earth - proving Ridley Scott didn't invent idiotic researchers with this year’s Prometheus. The film was a love letter to the classic kaiju monsters found in cinema from the 1950s onwards, though it never quite managed to break away from its B-movie loving audience.

Planzet is a bit more mainstream then, at least by anime standards. The film still plays around with sci-fi conventions, as did its predecessor, though here the particular sub-genre being targeted is the alien invasion one. Five years on from Negadon, Planzet is also staggeringly more intricate, the advances in computer hardware and animation software allowing Awazu to realise his visions in ways never before seen. With a voice cast boasting Mamoru Miyano (Death Note, Highschool of the Dead) and Junko Takeuchi (Naruto, Pretty Cure) and production bolstered by some of the top effects studios in Japan, the film itself reflects its own central conflict – a huge technical risk, but one worth taking in order to move forward.

Planzet is out on UK DVD from Manga Entertainment.

Buy it now

Jun Awazu's Planzet movie



was £19.99
In the year 2047, an alien lifeform codenamed FOS invades Earth and smashes through the world's major cities in one wave. The earth unites to fight back and puts up a Diffuser in place to stop further invasions 3 years after. Now in 2053, a plan is made for a last counterattack that must disable the Diffuser for an offensive...and Akeshima Taishi, who lost his father to the FOS when they first invaded, may finally get his revenge.



With the UK Blu-ray and DVD release upon us at last, it's a great time to take a look at Noragami and why it belongs on your shelf.

The Devil is a Part-Timer

There's a difference at MgRonald's
The show is a comment on real life, on the way we’re pressured to give up childish things – like, say, becoming an Evil Dark Lord of the world – and focus on the adult world of work.


Keiichi Hara Interview

Andrew Osmond talks to the director of Shin-chan and Colorful
As the eleventh Japan Touring Film Programme heads through Britain (see here for venues and here for our write-up), we took the opportunity to speak to the director of the anime entry, the feature film Colorful. Keiichi Hara has been working in anime for thirty-odd years, gaining experience through working with two of Japan’s most popular kids’ characters, Doraemon and Crayon Shin-chan. He then graduated to his own projects, and is now a freelancer who pushes at the boundaries of what anime can be.

Cosplay: Amaterasu

Paul Jacques rounds up the best dressed fans
Here comes the Sun! Christina Calver cosplays as Amaterasu Omi Kami, the Japanese Sun Goddess.

Mechademia 8: Tezuka's Manga Life

Jasper Sharp reviews a book-length collection on the “God of Manga”
Tezuka’s Manga Life is a scholarly and much-needed attempt to sort out the wheat from the chaff of the Tezuka myth, with its 22 contributors spread over 300+ pages attempting to put the vast output of the prodigious manga artist into context.

Robocop vs Anime Cyborgs

Andrew Osmond on the history of man-machine interfaces
RoboCop is thrown into interesting perspective by looking at his anime cousins. In Japan, RoboCop is one of a crowd. Two of anime’s greatest poster icons – Motoko Kusanagi in Ghost in the Shell and Tetsuo in Akira – are or become cyborgs. Moreover, a man-turned-robot was an anime hero back in 1963. We’re talking about 8th Man, shown in America as Tobor the Eighth Man. It’s a policeman who, yes, gets murdered by a crime gang, then resurrected in a robot body.

Mamoru Oshii: Lifetime Achievement Unlocked

Ghost in the Shell director honoured at Canadian film festival
Congratulations to director Mamoru Oshii for his lifetime achievement award, handed out last week at Montreal’s Fantasia International Film Festival.

We're Off to AnimeJapan!

One of the biggest, best and most jam-packed weekends of anime madness yet
“By focusing on 'Everything about Anime,' and 'offering more opportunities to experience animation,' we aim to create an event that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and that contributes to the future of animation.”

The Early Anno

Andrew Osmond on the adventures of Young Hideaki
22nd June sees the first ever British release of Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water on Blu-ray and DVD, courtesy of Animatsu. Nadia is a splendid adventure on its own terms, but it’s also an insight into the development of Hideaki Anno, who made Nadia five years before he unleashed Neon Genesis Evangelion on the world.

From Naruto to Fairy Tail

Paul Browne on the music of Yasuharu Takanashi
Two high-profile Manga Entertainment releases have something in common in the form of musician and composer Yasuharu Takanashi. It’s the distinctive musical strokes of Takanashi that appear on the new Naruto movie The Lost Tower as well as the upcoming movie addition to the Fairy Tail series – Phoenix Priestess.
Contact Us   |   Refund Policy   |   Delivery Times   |   Privacy statement   |   Terms & Conditions
Please note your card statement will show billing by MVM. Jun Awazu's Planzet movie from the UK's best Anime Blog.