“Ultraman’s the closest thing the modern world has to a god. No wonder people cling to him.”
SHIN ULTRAMAN (2022) is #2 of 3 in Hideaki Anno’s Shin series, which are not narratively connected, but are his takes on iconic Japanese sci-fi characters. The first one was the excellent SHIN GODZILLA and the third was the recent SHIN KAMEN RIDER. I was really excited to see this in its theatrical showing but it was two nights only and it turned out night two was dubbed. But now it’s on blu-ray (ironically with kinda messed up subtitles on my copy, but apparently they’ve fixed that).
Though this one is written by Anno, it’s directed by his SHIN GODZILLA co-director Shinji Higuchi. While Anno had done live action movies before (such as CUTIE HONEY), he’s primarily known as the anime visionary behind Neon Genesis Evangelion. Higuchi is maybe a more natural choice for something like this – he did storyboards for some anime, but he came up in the world of kaiju movies, starting as an assistant modeler on THE RETURN OF GODZILLA, and then as effects director of the excellent GAMERA: GUARDIAN OF THE UNIVERSE, GAMERA 2: ATTACK OF LEGION and GAMERA 3: REVENGE OF IRIS, where he was a real pioneer in the field of combining traditional rubber suit monsters and animatronics with early digital FX. (read the rest of this shit…)