5 November 2005 | kevin-dunlop
Tanks vs Samurai ( who wins ?)
I would firstly say that somehow I remember seeing this movie in my early childhood, I couldn't read the subtitles and I thought Sonny Chiba was Sean Connery. But I did really like the concept. If you are not able to at least partially suspend your adult scepticism and embrace your inner seven your old you may want to avoid this movie. That said, having just watched the restored 137 minute version on DVD I have to say I enjoyed it, though not as much as when I was seven ( I remembered the ending ).
There are aspects of the movie that are worthy of criticism , the first 15 minutes and final 15 minutes both have some really comic moments, my favourite being the contrast between scenes acted out in the final 10 minutes and the curious choice of backing music ( listen to the lyrics ).
For an action film there is a great deal of focus on the personal stories of certain soldiers and the social dynamics of the squad as the strain of their time travel takes its toll. By the ending of the movie I had decided that this was a good thing, when seven I though the 'relationship' guff was a bad thing.
For an action film there is also plenty of gratifying gory action, especially a couple of epic battle scenes between the platoon and hordes of Shogun era warriors. The makers of the movie have ensured that as many deaths as possible are bloody and, lets face it, humorous. I thought this was a splendid aspect of the movie when I was a kid, and I am not ashamed to say that I still do.
I also like the fact that the modern day soldiers in general don't spend the movie walking on egg shells trying to avoid altering the space time continuum, they've got heavy calibre machine guns, mortars, rocket launchers, a tank and a helicopter and they're hell bent on making feudal Japan theirs. Which is what I'd like to think any vigorous IMDb user would do in their boots.
In short the movies worth watching, it makes the viewer regret that there are not more movies made with a similar premise, and at the same time offers some hefty hints as to why a movie like G.I. Samurai is so unique.