FOR CARD COLLECTORS ONLY.
IT'S POSSIBLE that brain surgeons explain their work - while in progress - with more stultifyingly precise step-by-step data than the card-throwing combatants of ``Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie.'' Sheesh, with all those vicious-looking monsters at their disposal, can't Yugi and his chief rival Kaiba simply shut up? Can it not be enough, even once, to launch a salvo with the simple words, ``Blue-eyed dragon, sic 'em!''
Now, I realize that games must have rules and that anyone not familiar with the Japanese cartoon and card game phenomenon of Yu-Gi-Oh - on which the film is based - may be left utterly befogged if the rules aren't explained. Then again, given the variables here, does anybody observing the game really give a neon blue dragon's behind about why the killer clown can withstand the dark sorcerer ... with face-down cards ... on alternate Tuesdays ... during a leap year? We've got short attention spans here, folks, and we've come for action. Director Hatsuki Tsuji and his team of writers and animators should have lost 30 minutes and let the creatures fight.
Anyway, Yugi, the teen ``king of games'' with the loyal friends and the punk Phyllis Diller hairdo, faces his greatest challenge from the envious Kaiba. Kaiba wants to best Yugi's god cards and, to beat his rival, will even use black-magic tools supplied by the resurrected Egyptian god Anubis, who was defeated by Yugi's ancient alter ego, Pharaoh. Apparently, by using the Pyramid of Light card, a player becomes particularly hot spit.
So while Yugi and his friends - including the token girl, Tea - are chasing around the Millennium Puzzle (don't ask) and dodging sinister mummies, Pharaoh and Kaiba are duking it out in a boring, explanation-saturated duel. The fate of the world, we learn, may somehow be at stake. The only significant time spent away from this climactic duel is when Kaiba visits the the effete, white-wine-spritzer-drinking Pegasus, (please don't ask) to obtain better cards. And they duel.
Oh, well. Combatants will be combatants, and games will be games. Games shouldn't be movies. ``Yu-Gi-Oh!'' is the (barely) living proof.
Evan Henerson, (818) 713-3651
YU-GI-OH! THE MOVIE - One and one half stars
(PG: scary combat, monster images)
Starring: Voices of Dan Green, Eric Stuart, Scottie Ray.
Director: Hatsuki Tsuji.
Running time: 1 hr. 30 min.
Playing: Wide release.
In a nutshell: The actual game must be more exciting than this. It can't possibly be duller.
The young hero Yugi finds himself at odds with his rival Kaiba in ``Yu-Gi- Oh! The Movie.''
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Publication:||Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)|
|Date:||Aug 13, 2004|
|Previous Article:||EVERYMAN GETS HIS SHOT IN `LOBBY HERO'.|
|Next Article:||'WE DON'T LIVE HERE' HAS NO ANSWERS FOR ITS CHEATERS.|