The other day while I was writing up the Anime Review, I got to thinking about the state of anime and how easy it is to discover new shows and movies versus back in the days before the internet. Back then an “old school” fan like myself all we had was what little they showed on TV. However there was 1 shining light back then, The Sci-Fi Channel ( now know as Sy Fy).
The Sci-Fi Channel used to have a block of programming from like 8am to noon on Saturday called “Saturday Anime” and you’d get classics like Vampire Hunter D, Urusei Yatsura 2: Beautiful Dreamer, Venus War, Project Ako and more. They would also have a yearly event called “Anime Week” where each night they’d show a new anime feature length each night that would eventually get worked into their rotation on Saturdays.
Unfortunately, long gone are the days of Saturday Anime and Anime Week, along with correct spelling of “Sci-Fi” and the programing I loved so much as a kid. So I got to thinking, what if I did a weekly column of picks that people could check out if they choose/have the time to? Originally I was just going to do Anime, but why stop there? So after mulling it over a little, and inspired by the Sci-Fi channel of yester-years, I Give you Saturday Matinee (on Friday) where I pick a couple of gems you may or may not have seen. So if you’ve got a “Boring Saturday” afternoon planned, see if you can find these picks, kick back and enjoy the show.
My very first pick Roujin Z. Now I must apologize for this one up front. It took me forever to find this one because well, it was out of print for a little while, but I’ve seen that a few Anime streaming sites do have it so, check it out, and if you really end up liking it you can get it on Amazon
This movie is one of my top anime films of all time! (and Space). I absolutely love this movie. here’s the synopsis as it appears on iMDB:
ROUJIN Z is a classic feature length anime by director Katsuhiro Otomo the creator of AKIRA. Unlike AKIRA, ROUJIN Z is an comedy. An experimental computerized sick bed malfunctions and goes on a rampage through Tokyo with an invalid old man aboard. (Roujin means old man in Japanese.) The out of control atomic powered bed adds other machines to itself and grows to gigantic proportions. (much like Tetsuo’s out of control body in AKIRA.) There’s plenty of action and laughs with teens in trouble, bumbling bureaucrats and giant fighting robots. The 1998 DVD contains the original version subtitled, and a dubbed English version. Even if you don’t like English dubs, watch this one for the extra jokes the scripter added to the film.
My second pick for your matinee the classic Godzilla flick “Destroy All Monsters”. This one is more than like my favorite Godzilla movie ever (sure as hell wasn’t the 1997 one). I picked this one because it was always featured on Sci-Fi Channel’s Godzilla week and it featured soooo many monsters, you had Godzilla, Rodan, Ghidora, Mothra, Space Godzilla, Baby Godzilla (Not to be confused with Godzuki) and many more. This movie can be rented from VUDU for $2.99 so if you have that app on your xbox, playstation, blu-ray player, smart tv, definitely check this out. Here’s the Plot summary as it appears on iMDB:
In 1999, the United Nations has established bases on the moon and on Ogasawara Island off the coast of Japan. Ogasawara is also where all the world’s monsters, including Godzilla and Rodan, have gathered for study and to keep them from wreaking havoc on the world. However, a group of alien women known as Kilaaks take over the island and put the monsters as well as the humans under mental control in order to conquer the rest of the Earth. It is up to astronaut Katsuo Yemabe and his crew to stop the Kilaaks as well as release the monsters and the humans from their control before it is too late.
and there you have it the first Saturday Matinee (on Friday) I hope you all check these films out and enjoy!