ANIME TOP TEN (LIST #1) - #10: Space Battleship Yamato (1974)

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Director(s): Leiji Matsumoto, Noboru Ichiguro
Screenplay: Eiichi Yamamoto, Keisuke Fujikawa, Maru Tamura
Music: Hiroshi Miyagawa
 
The brainchild of producer Yoshinobu Nishizaki and Leiji Matsumoto, Space Battleship Yamato is considered a classic, and with good reason. It's groundbreaking in the way it sells its themes and characters and fleshes out its concepts. The story of a humanity on the brink of extinction, driven to desperate measures when a sudden hope appears, hunted by a deranged enemy that is perhaps no so unlike us, the spaceship Yamato cruises the sea of the stars in search of a cure to a diseased future. The point of view is mostly through the combat team leader Susumu Kodai (Kei Tomiyama), a brash youth whose family has died, who has little else but his own skills as a pilot. But he's far from the only character: the fatherly captain, Okita (Goro Naya), the cooler headed pilot Daisuke Shima (Shuusei Nakamura), the bionic scientist Shiro Sanada (Takeshi Aono), and Kodai's love interest Yuki Mori (Yoko Asagimi), the crew's seemingly sole female, also compliment the story. A story of triumph and tragedy, perserverance and humanity, Yamato soars above other works of science fiction with grace and nobility.