“This Boy can Fight Aliens” is a sci-fi film. Aliens have invaded the Earth, causing the Earth’s governments to go on the defensive. All seems lost until Arikawa, a defense command staff member, discovers a young man lying on a hill. This boy, Kakashi, turns out to have the ability to fight the aliens. Unfortunately, he’s lost the ability to use it, along with his memory. Still, he fights them effectively. He’s also moved in with Arikawa and his commander, Shiro. However, Kakashi has to deal with his loneliness and his doubts about wherever the world is worth fighting for. Can he face his demons and save the day?
The animation is wonderfully quirky and fun to watch, especially when Kakashi fights against the aliens. Although there really should have been some more battle scenes, since the aliens are pretty interesting visually the alien invasion is really just a framework for the emotional drama surrounding Kakashi, so don’t expect it to explain why the aliens have invaded the Earth or even if they can be bargained with. There are some homoerotic overtones, but they’re not the main point of the story. Kakashi’s emotional turmoil might have worked better if he had honestly believed that he was doomed to be utterly alone, useful only for fighting aliens and thinking he’ll just be a burden to anybody he cares for. Arikawa would then be able to snap him out of his self-pity by getting Kakashi to realize that he’s not a doom magnet and that he deserves to have people who love him. Still, the scene where all of his friends encourage him to keep fighting through the medium of his cell phone is touching. The movie almost feels like a yaoi short story that’s been turned into a short movie. This is an interesting anime that Honolulu anime fans should at least check out.
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