Why am I writing today? To try and save the Yamato. For those of you who didn't stay around last week, the movie Space Battleship Yamato sucked. It sucked big time. There were some aspects like the animation and music that were simply due to the series being old (it was made in the late 70s). Classics tend to have those types of problems, but they're still liked. However, the "it's a classic" argument doesn't save the horrible storytelling.
The movie compressed an entire TV series (26 episodes or about 12 hours) down to a little over 2 hours. The movie's highlight-reel approach resulted in almost no character development and constant battle scenes. The approach resulted in the story jumping from one climax to the next and sometimes even missing the resolution of climaxes. The best example of a missed climax is the scene where Yuki confronts Stasha, the music gets really dramatic, and then suddenly, the Yamato is loading equipment in the next scene.
It is perfectly possible to do good compilation movies of TV series. The Touch movies and the Macross movie are great examples of the right way to do compilations. To begin with, they're real movies with a real story containing a beginning, middle, and end. More importantly, they have character development in the story and don't assume that the audience will fill in the missing parts from prior knowledge.
So now comes my attempt to save the series. Final Yamato, which we are showing in the marathon, is not a compilation. It is a real story. It doesn't suck. I'll admit that it has some shortcomings: there are some panoramic sequences that go on a little too long, Yuki is really annoying, and there is one character who I wish had been more developed. But it has a solid story, character development, and as an added bonus, amazing animation. Overall, I liked watching the movie to the point of feeling compelled to keep watching. I liked it enough that I'm writing this article to tell you, "No, it doesn't suck," and I hope that you will also give it a chance in the marathon.