In the future, war rages on Mars. Captain Akuh and his crew are on a top-secret mission to destroy an enemy warship when an officer is stricken with an alien mind control plague. As the plague spreads, inciting madness and treason, Akuh must complete his mission, annihilate the alien battleship, and save the fate of the human race at all costs.
Directed by: Kazunari Kume
, Toshifumi Takizawa
. Starring: Hideyuki Tanaka
, Hiroko Emori
, Yuzuru Fujimoto
, Shinya Ôtaki
, Ikuya Sawaki
, Kôji Tsujitani
, Toshiyuki Morikawa
, Yumi Tôma
, Masaharu Satô
, Hirohiko Kakegawa
, Isshin Chiba
, Omi Minami
, Michiko Neya
. Music by: Michiaki Katoh
This is a manga movie which means that it is animated. One does not say that it is a cartoon because this insults those who love manga, which I am not among. Some Manga movies I don't mind but generally I don't find them interesting, and some of them are just too surreal for my tastes. Big War (though a half-Japanese friend of mine suggested that this was not the proper translation) is not one of these movies, though there are some interesting ideas that come out of this one.
Big War is set in the Twenty Fifth century and an alien race known only as the gods have invaded the solar system. The action takes place on Mars, the last planet before they reach Earth and is focused around Captain Ako, whose ship was destroyed in a previous battle. The opening seems to depict this battle and we see a destroy ship where two humans come across a body of one of them. The fact that the god is dead shows us that they are not really gods, but just very powerful mortals.
The first part of the movie defines the character of Ako and his relationship with an intelligence agent. She tracks him down on Mars and they have a love affair. We are also shown that the gods can influence people's minds and turn them against each other, and the intelligence agencies track these people down and kill them before they can sabotage the human war effort. Once the gods attack, the plot shifts to the destruction of their carrier known as Hell and an intense war scene begins.
The topic of why this war is fought is raised at the beginning. It seems that the gods came out of nowhere and began to attack the humans. There is discussion about how the gods were our creators and we have become too powerful so they are trying to destroy us before we destroy them. Then there is the idea that we were given Earth, but we took Mars as well and the gods have come to punish us because Mars is not meant to be for us.
This movie seems to be an attack at religion. After the Tokyo gas attacks, organised religion has been treated very harshly. Japan today is a society based of business, and I have been told that foreign religions have been treated with much suspicion. The whole concept of brainwashing and turning against society is something that religion, especially Christianity, has been accused of for centuries. In ancient Rome, Christianity was considered a religion that opposed the state and was thus outlawed. This is not so in Japan, but it is treated with much suspicion. This suspicion seems to have manifested itself in the form of this movie.
The middle of the movie has a scene where the leader of the gods has gathered humans about him, his chosen ones, and has promised them peace in paradise. The others that are not apart of this shall be destroyed. The whole concept of the attack of the carrier known as Hell is to say that God is not all powerful and he cannot hold any such thing over our head. Instead we can fight and defeat him and those who are turned should be treated as having been lost.
This is not the way God works. First of all he is the creator of everything and because of that he can destroy everything. He created and is in control of the laws of physics and thus can change them at his will. He is not bound by them as we are. Also he created us and gave us a choice to follow him and live in paradise eternally, or reject him and die. Well chose the second way, so when the end does come, it is our own fault, and we can not even think about winning a war against him.
Review by david-sarkies from the Internet Movie Database.