Earth is forbidden ground. None may return as other planets prove to be difficult to inhabit. However, Captain Harlock and his ship of pirates fight for freedom from those who seek to keep Earth all for themselves.
I should preface this review by saying this is the first Harlock-related anime I've seen. Which means, I'm missing 40 years of backstory, but I took that into account when watching this anime. Story: (9) Despite this being my first Harlock, the movie does a great job of catching the viewer up to speed. It gives a lot of the backstory without being completely monologue and boring. There are bits in the movie that don't make a whole lot of sense, especially when it comes to the technology used. Again, it might just be my ignorance to the series, but having a super cannon come out of Jupiter without explanation seems a little odd. Animation: (10) So... beautiful. The CGI for this movie is gorgeous. I can honeslty say I haven't seen many movies with CGI like this. Maybe some short films, but rarely a full-length feature. Clothing, hair, skin, even the smoke looked almost live-action instead of animated. The older characters, Harlock and those from the original series, are pretty recognizable, if given a harder edge. Like, Kei's catsuit being darkened and given random zippers at the shoulders and elbows, and Miime changing hair color. Sound: (8) I watched the dubbed version, and the lip movements weren't quite synced up to the words. The sound effects were pretty good, although it was hard to imagine what dark matter should sound like when exiting an engine... I'd also heard that Harlock and Miime were pretty good musicians, so I was hoping they'd try and incorporate that into the movie. No such luck. Characters: (9) Again, this movie had some well established characters. Some backstory is provided for the crew, but not much. A lot of the character development is reserved for some newly introduced characters: Yama (Logan) and Isola (Ezra). The rest of the cast remains fairly static. Overall: Even if you haven't seen the Harlock series from the 1970s or any of the movies, this is a great stand alone movie. I'd definitely recommend it.
Does Harlock Space Pirate have any issues? Yes of course it does. The motives of the villains towards the end of the film feel really stupid and feel like they would incriminate them even further than they already have been and the film’s early pacing feels a bit off and I’m not sure these characters will appeal completely to everyone, but for me personally these are definitely negatives that aren’t gonna bother me too much. Harlock Space Pirate is absolutely fantastic. I had an absolute ball with it and it was just the film I needed on the back of seeing ‘Unfriended.’ It”s an excellent Space Opera that deals with freedom and duty and does them expertly. It’s a story that will captivate a lot of people and an excellent re-boot to the franchise. The animation is gorgeous, the 3D effect is excellent and makes me wish I had seen it in a Cinema, and the Actors do their job brilliantly. While the ending doesn’t leave the film completely open to a sequel I would definitely not object to going further with this re-booted franchise because this was an excellent Sci-Fi film and Space Opera that I would gladly like to see further expanded. If you like Anime this is one to add to your collection
This is one of the best looking cg movies yet period, verry cool setting awsome air ships, a crew of steam punkish pirates and a crazy kid thats in for the ride of his life when he meets Capiian Hurlock and learns the true meaning of freedome. nonstop action, epic battles and a few silly moments makes this a great movie for those still new to "Captian Hurlock" and another beauityful addition to an amasing classic anime series.
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