I finally watched my Mill Creek Blu-ray of this film. Oh, man, how frustrating. That was one of the most frustrating movies I've ever seen. It could and should have been an absolutely fantastic SFX spectacle extravaganza, but it was tripped at the finish line by bizarre
structure. I was 100% on board all the way through until our heroes arrived at the base on the Moon. The ride to get there was mostly outstanding, with effects, action, tension, and music to rival any of Toho's kaiju films. The actual battle once they got to the base was somewhat disappointing, with the aliens revealed to be incompetent and with no actual leader (I'd been looking forward to meeting him), but Iwamura's sacrifice was handled pretty well to make up for it. Had the movie ended there, I'd have been happy. But it didn't. That whole mission was revealed to have been completely pointless, the aliens invade earth and go full Independence Day. Again, spectacular effects, but zero buildup to a sequence like that robbed it of any impact it could otherwise have had, and it just ends up as a bunch of empty flash. Damn, I'm mad.
I was ready to come here and declare this film one of my new favorites and wonder why the hell it seems so overlooked by the fandom, and... yeah.
And it would've been so easy to fix this, too. If they wanted to do a big, over-the-top invasion/destruction scene, it should've been early in the film. A few tweaks, more involvement from our main characters, and it would've served very well as the reason for the Moon mission being launched to begin with. Rather than an armed recon mission, it would've been a retaliatory strike actually aimed at actually ending the threat. Simple. How the hell did such an obviously talented production team screw it up so badly? Ugh. Again, though, credit where it's due. The flight to the Moon and the clash with the torpedoes was top-tier sci-fi spectacle, and I love the designs of the SPIPs and the ATVs. And Ifukube's relatively subdued score fit the film perfectly.
I should mention that I haven't seen The Mysterians
, and it's been years since I've seen Godzilla vs. Monster Zero
or DAM. Mostly the only Showa-era space-based sci-fi I've seen recently is Ultraman
, so spaceship effects on that low, cheap level were freshest in my mind and more or less what I expected going into BIOS. So if I seem unduly blown away by this film's effects, that would be why.
"Stop wars and no more accidents. I guess that's all I can ask." -Akio