Directed by: Shinji Higuchi
Starring: Haruma Miura, Kiko Mizuhara, Kanata Hongo, Nanami Sakuraba
“He can’t keep getting away with it!” – Jessie Pinkman, Breaking Bad
It should be noted that in the past, I found and came to love the anime Attack on Titan, even giving the first season of the show an 9/10. With hindsight being 20/20 I will say that time has made me re-evaluate the quality of the show and really see the flaws that are there. Even with there being flaws like pacing and falling within the tropes of other anime, I still do enjoy the show and have returned to it several times. When I first heard that there was to be a Japanese adaptation of the Manga/anime I was excited, I mean, with the country of origin doing its own adaptation and with the fandom at an all time high, whats the worst that could possibly happen? After seeing the film, my friend Chase put it simply, “The Porno was a more faithful adaptation.” This just might truly be, the worst film I’ve ever seen.
“Are you into single mothers?”
Attack on Titan (Part 1) has the same basic setup from the anime, Titans (monsters that look like humans only around 30 feet tall) suddenly appear and start to eat humanity as a whole. Humanity, in its desperation, erects a huge wall to keep the titans out. A hundred years pass with no Titans getting inside the wall, until a colossal titan appears and breaks the wall down causing our lead characters Eren, Mikasa and Armin to survive the invasion. The film borrows this same basic set-up but suddenly, and drastically changes everything and not for the better.
I realize that adaptations have to stand on their own and, as such, have to be looked at from the perspective of being its own one-off film with its own universe. While I tried to look at it from this perspective, it doesn’t make any damn sense without having previously seen either the anime or reading the Manga prior to the film. Some listeners may know that I have a personal vendetta with director M. Night Shyamalan for his abysmal adaptation of The Last Airbender. I would like to take this moment and personally apologize to him for any bad things I have said in the past because Attack on Titan is the single worst film I have ever seen. Readers, I know what you are thinking right now, “he’s just over exaggerating cause he is a fan of the show and because they didn’t get something right, he’s just upset about it.” No, thats truly not the case.
As I sit here and recall the film im honestly trying to think of one single thing that the film got right. It truly is a lesson for film makers in “what not to do” in film. The camera work is abhorrent, the acting is horrendous, plot holes and story threads go no where, visual effects are laughable, and worst of all the film is incredibly boring. This next statement may come off as sounding racist, but I really couldn’t tell the characters apart due to them looking all the same. Same type haircut, same type clothes and same type acting. At some moments I thought a character had died only to come back later as still alive and I had mixed them up with a superfluous character that was merely screen meat.
The film by itself was bad on nearly all levels until the end of the second act, when the film finally broke me and had me laughing uncontrollably for the final thirty minutes. Oh thats right, the film is also only 90 minutes long, but feels somewhere around five hours long. But I digress, at the end of the second act, while hiding from the titans, a couple decides to have sex right next to other people in their group, which I can understand in times of stress, but they couldn’t have found anywhere else to go? On top of that the other two characters in the same room, start to have a conversation about if the couple having sex would be married. While talking it is reviled that the female character (not having sex) is a single mother who then thrusts herself onto Armin asking “are you into single mothers?” By this point my audience started giggling while i was having trouble breathing from laughing. She then looks into his eyes and asks, “would you be my child’s father?” and we all lost it. That was the point of no turning back, this truly is the single worst adaptation.
Despite the incompetence, the film is just part one of a two film series that I almost feel like have to watch, just to see if its somehow worse than part one. Its like an autopsy, we know its dead but we need to know who or what killed it. I realize that with adaptations one can take liberties with the source material, but such extremes were taken in this case that I would rather have not even called the film “Attack on Titan” and named it something generic like “The Wings of Freedom”. The truly saddening part is that this has an incredible source material with huge potential that demands justice to be done to it. Maybe in the future an American adaptation can show the world how incredible the story can be. Attack on Titan is truly an detestable, loathsome film that has absolutely no redeeming value to it. To put it simply, id rather have my fingernails ripped off and eyes gouged out than see this film again. fuck you movie.