Giant Robot Store and GR2 News

This isn’t a Top Ten list like “Best Concert, Best Movie, or Best Toy”. It’s a list that’s as important and there are highlights in them all, but by no means is it a Top Ten of anything. They’re just important as everything else – family, friends, and so on. Maybe I’ll try and turn out a list that’s more like that…


 We painted the mural on the wall. That alone was an 11 hour project. 


Zen Garage – The year started off great with the Zen Garage art opening just a few days before the new year. Yet, the actual New Year’s Day kicked off with the Oshogatsu program at JANM. It was motor vehicles including the Giant Robot Scion Car I designed but also custom motorcycles and the now vintage David Choe Scion. Thanks to Len Higa and Shinya Kimura for jumping on board. The year began with a GR show in a museum – it’s a great start with you get to do a project with friends, new friends, and a place like JANM. Collaboration can be more fun than doing something alone.


 It’s great when artists install their own work. 


James Jean Art Show – Aside from it being one of the greater or even greatest art shows of the year, it also indelibly marked the night that the earthquake struck Japan. I recall, it was at the after party, the twitter messages were beginning. An 8.9 quake? The thought of a giant quake was one thing, yes there would be lives lost and yes a lot of damage, but less than an hour later, the Tsunami hit the shores and that’s when the things got real, it became internet news for days straight.

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Yes, I was chosen to watch a battery of movies in a few days, deliberate with fellow judges, and pick the winners. You’d think it’s an easy task, just to sit and watch movies, but staying objective, realizing that a movie that might not be your style, still might be the best film, and there’s more to it. I judged at the SFIAFF, Cinevegas, and there was a couple more… I’m glad to help out. 15k for the champ is a pretty hefty prize considering the prize is usually zero at the smaller fests, but you do get to place those cute grape leaves on your movie poster. Thankfully, the films take place at night and they show 3 times each!

“The narrative jury consists of director Lynn Shelton (Humpday, My Effortless Brilliance), Head/Founder of Giant Robot Eric Nakamura, and screenwriter Daniel Waters (Heathers, BatmanReturns).” … “Unrestricted cash awards are given out in the following categories: Jury Award for Best NarrativeFeature ($15,000),…”

Very long press release after the jump.

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[youtube]PdnnC43Cotw[/youtube]   In our age of Green Lantern, X Men, and the upcoming Avenger series, Japan has their own super hero redo, and it’s Zaborgar, a 70s kids superhero known as “Denjin Zaboga” which was a motorcycle that transformed into a robot to fight enemies using the commands by his helmet wearing “master”, Yutaka Daimon. But unlike the superhero movies produced by Hollywood that are now focusing on perfect CG and reality, this film is sort of an Austen Powers version that spends a good deal of time poking fun at the fiction and glorifying the groovy 70s. Some of the jokes are loud but some are so subtle, they challenge you to find more.   The beginning half puts the character in it’s heyday it’s the 70s, where the technology is throw back future. Lit up buttons, rivets, and stainless steel paneling made for the right look. The lead good guy, Daimon is the product of a crappy upbringing. When the enemies, led by Dr. Akunomiya and the testicle bag of a ship invade Earth along with the heroine Miss Borg. She’s clad in a metal bra and is often fighting but also crushing on Daimon. The movie takes a comedic turn when it beams forward 25 years and the stars are now of a different generation. Daimon now is a driver, the secret police force are out of work, and the diabolical Dr Akunomiya is still up to no good. The results of the 25 year leap quickly turn into focus. Love children, robots, children turning into robots, cell phone babbling, and more. Noboru Iguchi, known for his low budget girl exploitation movies, adds a little bit of his boob funk to the henshin redux. See this at Los Angeles Film Festival. Sponsored by us (Giant Robot)   *It was a live action show that’s been long forgotten and put away. It did air in Hawaii, and I’m pretty sure it aired in the mainland, as I recall seeing it.
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