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Lily C.A.T.

Lily C.A.T. (1987) Movie Poster
Japan  •    •  80m  •    •  Directed by: Hisayuki Toriumi.  •  Starring: Hiroyuki Okita, Masako Katsuki, Osamu Saka, Chikao Ohtsuka, Eiko Yamada, Yoshiko Sakakibara, Ryôichi Tanaka, Tesshô Genda, Shigeru Chiba, Hideyuki Tanaka, Kôzô Shioya, Hiroshi Ôtake, Mahito Tsujimura.  •  Music by: Akira Inoue.
     A captain and his crew travel across the universe in a ship that can travel for 20 years while the crew will age only 1 year. Soon the crew realizes that a criminal is onboard who is hoping to escape civilization. The crew must find who the criminal is, and find the source of a deadly virus that is destroying them one by one.

Review:

Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
Image from: Lily C.A.T. (1987)
As others have already pointed out, this Japanese animated film is very much a rip off of "Alien" and "Aliens", from the mixed bag of characters (more on that later) to the visual look of just about everything inside the spaceship. The monster itself is a blatant rip from John Carpenter's "The Thing". There were also elements of "Leviathan" (already in itself a B-movie).

I watched this on Amazon, and considering their propensity for The Asylum films, I was already going in expecting this to be an average flick. With nothing better to do this winter afternoon, I sat down to watch it (it's quite short, barely longer than an hour).

The mixed bag of characters is a trope of the genre, but in this particular case the writing of those characters was blatantly amateurish. As has been said elsewhere in the reviews for this flick, the characters are annoying and constantly bickering over silly little things. There's a monster on board the spaceship, and yet they can only whine about being interrogated regarding a non-existent crime (one of the "twists" of the story). Two characters are barely disguised rip offs of Brett and Parker in the original "Alien" film, one belongs in a Saturday morning cartoon with a great dane, two girls, and a guy in an ascot... damned meddling kids! The rest barely get enough speaking lines for the viewer to develop any sort of appreciation for the characters.

Visually (despite being a cartoon) the entire look of the film was ripped directly from "Alien". The costumes, however, were pure Japanese Saturday morning cartoon, with girls in silly and absolutely not practical outfits, and the guys in "cool" outfits that belong more on "bad boys" from high school than space explorers.

There's one major plot hole in the story (like REALLY major): the bacteriumvirusentity is airborne, meaning everyone on the ship is infected... the captain even dies from it quite suddenly during the obligatory self-sacrifice scene at the end. And yet, the survivors fly down to the planet's surface, supposedly safe. So they weren't infected, like everyone else on the ship? Or are they just idiots dragging a hostile foreign contagion into a pristine eco-system?

There's no real explanation as to why the c.a.t. apparently deliberately infects the crew members, other than a cursory "the crew are expendable" throw-away line at one point. All that was missing to make the rip off perfect would have been for someone to say that "the company planned on using it for their bio-weapons department".

I can tolerate some bad writing, or the occasional clich├ęs and nods of the hat to other films. But the quality (or lack thereof) in this film made it very difficult to tolerate.


Review by capcanuk from the Internet Movie Database.