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Fafner: Heaven and Earth (BLU-RAY)

Fafner: Heaven and Earth

Movie
Studio(s): 
Director(s): 
On Blu-Ray: 
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Grade:
B+
Running Time: 
95 Minutes

I enter the world of Fafner having missed the original anime series that came before it. That being said I had no idea who anyone was, what the significance of names or arrivals were, nor the events that transpired before this sequel movie. Unfortunately as a means of grasping the entirety of the feature from a fans perspective, it’s not a stand alone model as far as the history behind the events that have taken place and have begun to take place here.

So, in the original series it looks like an alien race had come to Earth and was keen on taking over. As usual, the human race wasn’t going to stand for it and built themselves some mecha weapons to take them alien intruders on. The humans won the fight, leaving a small insurgent collective of alien beings alive on a small island out in the middle of the ocean. Not good enough. Some humans wanted the alien threat gone forever and went about dropping nukes on the remaining few. Peace was to ensue.

Life went on with the original squadron of mecha fighters living their lives and also watching them wither away. Then out of the blue the alien threat makes a major comeback. Confident, the fighters head out to meet the threat only to find that they have somehow becomes stronger, advanced. Even human like? What?

I had to abandon all hope that I would come to understand the feature as branch of the original Fafner series, again having never seen it, and grasp whatever messages might be found within this somewhat disjointed, mostly action packed bonanza. After a prologue, an initial meeting of main characters, then an introduction to the new and improved baddies, well, it was all mostly guns blazing and pilots screaming at the top of their lungs as they dealt and received damage. What was I going to find in all of this?

Surprisingly there is a conflicting message in the mix of it all. Like our war WWII, the human’s in this series dropped bombs on their defeated enemies. Some of the characters suffered for it, either by emotional or physical ways, or both. In a twist the enemy I somewhat humbled, inspired even, to mimic their victors by trying to understand them, be them even, and in that the enemy finds itself at odds with itself. Honestly it reminded me of The Evolution of the Daleks, an episode of Doctor Who in which The Daleks mix up their code with human DNA to create the ultimate Dalek, only in the end the emotionless villains become humanized with all their frail emotions. Like the Daleks, the alien invaders here becomes conflicted with emotion, something they didn’t have previously. Within that message we find aliens and humans coming together to ponder the idea of free will. At its core it’s still kind of a pro-war message, even though on the surface the film and its characters are trying to come to a peace without war. Lots to think on and talk about.

PICTURE QUALITY:
Fafner: Heaven and Earth, has a lot of soft spots that make some of the scenes looks a bit dated and muted as far as color and detail go. The, you have the parts of the film where everything is perfect. In the war between just having a decent but soft picture and having a perfect one, you’re going to find that Fafner: Heaven and Earth has too much going for it as far as picture quality to let some soft spots ruin the whole event for you. Like it’s mecha peer Evangelion, detail is super sharp when it comes to the mecha, and color is robust and vibrant as the picture rolls left and right exposing the massive alien and mecha carnage. You won’t be disappointed there but interior shots of regular old humans in low lit area’s will have you shrugging.

BONUS FEATURES:
~U.S. Commentary
~Trailer Collection
~Previews
~DVD/BD Versions

 

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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