Gantz started off as an manga, became an anime and is now a live-action film. People who’ve died are taken instantly to white room where they wake up alive and healthy and then a large black globe tells them to go and kill aliens.
Perhaps when I put it like that, it doesn’t seem like much, but it is an exciting and engaging film. Ninomiya Kazunari, Matsuyama Kenichi and Natsune Watanabe are all good in the three lead roles, and Yoshitaka Yuriko pops up in a minor role as a student with a crush on the hero.
The special effects-laden sections where the team fight aliens of various shapes and sizes are tightly directed. The team has no choice but to fight, and there are always newcomers in the team who aren’t very well prepared. As a result, few make it back alive. This keeps things interesting.
Away from the action, the film is more sedate as our heroes are sent back to their homes when they’re not fighting aliens. They try to live a normal life while they piece together what is happening, and wait for the next time they’re suddenly taken to the white room to do battle.
It’s difficult to describe Gantz, because going into detail about a film as dynamic and physical and also enigmatic as this seems a bit pointless. The film doesn’t concern itself with explanations, you simply have to accept things and see what happens. Which is more or less the situation our heroes are in. A sequel is promised, with a tantalising last scene which leaves many questions unanswered.
I’m already looking forward to it.