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Tenchi the Movie (1996)

Tenchi Muyo in Love

What the box says:

The GP headquarters has vanished. One word is left..."Kain" The merciless criminal has escaped from sub-space where he has been captured! Kain, who was deprived of his freedom by the Jurai royal family and GP (Galaxy Police), has demolished the GP headquarters and attacked the Jurai King. His next target is earth!

Tenchi is dissolving back to 1970! Around the same time on earth, Tenchi's house has suddenly disappeared. What's even worse is that Tenchi's body is disappearing too! Something must have happened in the past tp Tecnhi's mother, Achika! So the gang must now leave for a journey to the year 1970.


At the Galaxy Police space station, the first class prisoner, Kain, escapes from his cell and travels into the past. The station explodes. Kiyone and Mihoshi are in near Earth and get a message about the destruction of the space station when something hits the Earth.

Suddenly, Tenchi starts fading out of existence.

Cutting back to 1970, Mihoshi is a teacher. Kiyone is a janitor. Ryoko and Ayeka are students in class with Tenchi’s parents. Back to the present, Tenchi, Ayeka, and Ryoko are watching a home movie his dad made of mom. Atchika, Tenchi’s mom, starts fading out of the film. Tenchi starts fading out of existence again when Washu is able to save him. Apparently, 26 years ago, Atchika disappeared. To insure the continued existence of the universe, they must keep Atchika from being erased from existence. They’ll have to go back in time to protect her.

Washu sends them back in time and warns Tenchi not to meet his mother. Back in the past, Ayeka and Ryoko are fighting.

Your money or your life...
In PE, Tenchi watches his mother from afar.

Later, that day, Atchika goes home and finds Ayeka and Ryoko there. The girls live so far off they needed a closer place to school. Suddenly, teacher Mihoshi stops by.

In the present, Washu has realized that Atchika will be killed within 7 days.

The next day, the brooding class guy keeps watching Atchika to the point Ryoko starts thinking he’s suspicious. Atchika notices Noboyuki’s drawings and they talk about architecture. The class is going on a field trip to Tokyo Tower.

Washu brings Kiyone back to the present. She realizes the destruction of the Galaxy Police headquarters has the same energy pattern as Atchika’s disappearance which means that Kain is tied into it. If so, he will appear in Tokyo to eliminate Atchika.

In the past, the class is getting ready for their trip. Nobuyuki takes a short home movie of Atchika (the one Tenchi was watching in the beginning). Ayeka and Ryoko are teasing Atchika and Nobuyuki. Ryoko notices the brooding guy and starts to chase but loses him. She eventually catches up with and learns he’s actually a Galaxy Police officer following Kain who is trying to eliminate the House of Jurai descendents.

Kain is heading into the past. Washu sends a message back that Kain will strike at Tokyo Tower. They don’t have anyone who can direct energy to stop Kain. Washu has some equipment that can be placed around Tokyo which will imprison Kain.

Tenchi heads to place the transmitter at Tokyo Tower. Ayeka, Ryoko, Sasami, and the rest place the transmitters around Tokyo and head to the tower. Atchika and Nobuyuki are with their class at the tower.

Zeram, eat your heart out...
As Kain materializes, the Galaxy Police officer attacks him but is promptly killed. Tenchi is setting up the transmitter up as Kain reaches the tower. He sends Noboyuki to activate the transmitter as Tenchi defends Atchika. However, Kain gets the upper hand when Atchika starts to power up. Noboyuki starts the transmitter which starts to suck Kain into the Phantom Zone or Negative Zone, or subspace. Atchika and Noboyuki are trapped with Kain.

In subspace, Noboyuki finds Atchika.

Washu has a long shot plan that might work to send Ayeka, Tenchi, and Ryoko to face Kain. The dangerous part requires using the Dimensional Cannon.

Ayeka, Ryoko, and Tenchi are beamed into subspace. Kiyone preps the Dimensional Cannon.

Subspace, Atchika armors up to attack Kain when the cavalry arrives.

Samurai Geisha Girl just didn't draw the audiences that the creators expected.
Tenchi wields his lightsaber at Kain who morphs into a giant monster that knocks him out.

What is this Schwartz you keep talking about?
Atchika grabs the energy sword and carves Kain like a turkey. As they head for the portal, Kain is reforming and following after them. The Dimensional Cannon hits Kain and traps him in subspace as the others make it to Earth.

Before Ayeka and Ryoko head back to the present, Atchika asks them to watch Tenchi. Ayeka erases Atchika’s memories of Kain, etc…Ayeka, Ryoko, and the unconscious Tenchi sent back to the present.

Tenchi narrates how Atchika wielding the Jurai power shortened her life. In the past, Noboyuki and Atchika are married and have a baby. Atchika’s father suggests Tenchi.

What I say:

This weeks suggested soundtrack sond is Huey Lewis and the News Back in Time

This week's review is a roundtable with some of the far more ninjaliscious B-movie reviewers out there. With the start of 2009 and a promise of a new and better year, what would be a better roundtable topic than time travel movies? I had already reviewed into Future War so I couldn't do it. However, Andrew of BadMovies.Org decided to handle it: Future War. Any movie with time travel, aliens, dinosaurs, and flannel will give plenty of sites reviewable movies.

This movie reminds me a lot of Back to the Future. OK, Marty McFly never had any superpowers and had to battle a super powerful Biff in the Negative Zone. Tenchi didn't have a DeLorean. The time travel element and having to get his parents together or protect them is enough to compare it to a certain DeLorean clad time machine movie. Tenchi starts to fade out of existence several times much like Marty near the end of Back to the Future.

Most people automatically consider anime in the vein of Sailor Moon or Pokemon and then throw it away. If they get past that notion, it's easy to think of anime as just Akira-like with lots of screaming "Tetsuooooooooooooooooooooo" and "Kanedaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa". We've seen the number of animes that have the cyberpunk sci-fi vibe with the obligatory gun-toting chick: Armitage III: Polymatrix and Ghost in the Shell. That's not all the story. Anime has had some truly amazing things like Princess Monoke (not Monoke-Hime, according to the title on my DVD), but anime has also had some truly atrocious things like Ninja Resurrection.

Back in the 1990s, thanks to Sci-Fi Channel's anime festivals, that gave me my first experience with Tenchi Muyo. I was completely confused by this movie. Teenage boy apparently lives with a number of hot anime chicks that are are warm for his form, and hilarity ensues. Eventually after watching the Tenchi series: Tenchi in Tokyo, Tenchy Muyo, and Tenchi Universe, it made a little more sense. This movie makes a bit more sense, not a lot. Since all of the Tenchi series pretty much ret-conned everything from the other series. It's has been so long since I've watched any of the series I don't remember much more than the general background stuff.

Kain is very reminiscient of Zeram in Iria Zeiram the Animation or it's live-action prequel Zeram. Kain is a super powerful energy lifeform out for revenge and if travelling through time to wipe out ancestors of those that imprisoned him sounds good, Kain is up for that. Zeram is more an energy version of John Carpenter's: The Thing that seems to want to absorb other beings.

Normally, any anime with number of girls is hard to keep track of who is who. So each character is given a different hair color or fairly identifiable personality trait to tell them apart. Tenchi isn't like the soap opera anime or mangas. In the Tenchiverse, pretty much, it is Ayeka versus Ryoko for Tenchi. Kiyone, Mihoshi, Washu, and Sasami are just there more for a background than anything else.


Quotable Dialogue

"I won't waste these crackers on you."
"Tenchi's mother is descended from the Jurai royal family."
"Please, show me, show me..."
"Have I chosen a bad time to bring you back?"
"Generator in Red Fudo!"
"All you have is completely useless destructive power?"

Morals of the Story

Merry-Go-Rounds are actually time machines.
People aren't bothered by random energy blasts.
Volleyball is a power sport if it hits you in the face.
Teachers love field trips.
Tokyo has soup bars.
Geisha wear is actually armor.

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