HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Supernova
Man Who Sold His Skin, The
Sweetheart
No Man of God
Gaia
Oliver Sacks: His Own Life
Scenes with Beans
Sweat
Quiet Place Part II, A
Nobody
Prisoners of the Ghostland
Duel to the Death
Mandibles
Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
Yakuza Princess
Djinn, The
New Order
Triggered
Claw
Original Cast Album: Company
Martyrs Lane
Paper Tigers, The
Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, The
Hall
ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt, The
Collini Case, The
Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard
Snake Girl and the Silver-Haired Witch, The
Superhost
Plan A
When I'm a Moth
Tigers Are Not Afraid
Misha and the Wolves
Yellow Cat
Shorta
Knocking
Bloodthirsty
When the Screaming Starts
Sweetie, You Won't Believe It
Lions Love
   
 
Newest Articles
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
   
 
  Age of the Great Dinosaurs Prehistoric Perils
Year: 1979
Director: Shotaro Ishinomori, Hideki Takayama
Stars: Chikao Otsuka, Hiroko Suzuki, Ichiro Nagai, Mitsuko Horie, Noriko Ohara, Noriko Tsukase, Shotaro Ishinomori, Toru Ohira, Yosuke Kondo
Genre: Drama, Animated, Science Fiction, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: An ecologically themed anime, Age of the Great Dinosaurs opens with live action footage of Tokyo’s crowded, pollution clogged streets intercut with cartoon dinosaurs rampaging through the prehistoric past. Our young hero Jun (voiced by Chikao Otsuka) is horrified to see a construction crew lay waste to flowers and trees. A sensitive lad, he muses on the damage being done to the environment. Strange lights in the sky lead Jun to the beach where he meets pretty Remi (Hiroko Suzuki) and her bratty brother Chobi (Ichiro Nagai). A huge, talking UFO - whose spectacular entrance is modelled on that of the mothership from Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977) - transports the inquisitive kids back to the Cretaceous Period to learn some harsh lessons about humanity’s past, present and possible future.

Manga giant Shotaro Ishinomori is best known for the plethora of live-action superhero movies based on his work. His creative stamp marked Kamen Rider (1971), Message from Space (1978) and his most internationally recognised creation, the long-running Zyu Ranger franchise, which you’ll probably know as the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. Like his contemporaries Osamu Tezuka and Hayao Miyazaki, Ishinomori also lent his skill to anime, with sci-fi adventures like the Cyborg 009 movies (1967-1980), Flying Phantom Ship (1969), 30,000 Miles Under the Sea (1970) and Harmageddon (1983), aimed at children but with socially conscious themes.

Age of the Great Dinosaurs is just such a movie. A tad preachy at times, but sincere and endowed with striking, near-psychedelic visuals that make remarkable use of light and colour, alongside Ishinomori’s appealing character designs. Rock band Shogun contribute a fine score that goes from haunting melodies to awesome disco-funk. Intended as an educational movie, this is remarkable honest about the harsh realities of nature and features impressively gory dinosaur battles. Our child heroes discover a batch of friendly, newly-hatched triceratops and flee a scary, red-eyed tyrannosaurus rex dubbed with Godzilla’s roar. In a gruesome touch you won’t find in American cartoons, he gobbles all the babies save for one, before being gorily speared in the eye by plucky, little Chobi.

Aside from one humorous vignette where dinosaurs goof around with glowing fireflies, this takes an almost docu-drama approach. A range of dinosaurs are shown in action and each given a mini bio or list of factoids. Caught in a time warp, as their baby triceratops rapidly grows to adulthood, the kids journey forward to see tectonic plates shift, volcanoes explode, icecaps melt and mankind evolve from tiny mammals into Cro-Magnon cavemen. The script makes a slight gaffe by having a lone T-Rex hang around to plague mankind (“That’s impossible!” says dino-expert Jun, and he’s right), but this twist does have a point.

Chobi falls in love with a little cave girl and intervenes when her mother is offered in sacrifice to the monster by a crazy skull-masked midget priest. But when Chobi throws his spear, Ishinomori cuts to a montage of war, atomic bombs and contemporary violence, which hints this little boy embodies not just mankind’s indomitable spirit, but also its appetite for self-destruction. The monster’s death is not triumphant, but mournful. It ends on a warning for mankind’s future, leaving poor Jun even more worried than before, and a then-trendy English language theme song (“Love is the waaaaaaaaayyyyy!!!”).

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 12941 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: