Being a superhero is hard work. Doubly so for Masaru Daisato (played by Big Man Japan's writer/director/star Hitoshi Matsumoto): Masaru has the ability to grow to monstrous size, yet, long past his prime, he's mocked and ignored by the populace of Japan and lives a lonely, unappreciated life. He works for the government—every once in a while, his cell phone rings, letting him know he has to go fight a monster—and spends his free time eating noodles, hanging out with his embarrassed daughter, and wondering if his agent is embezzling his money. The battle scenes—in which a CG, super-sized Masaru fights CG, super-sized creatures—are fun, but Big Man Japan's real draws are its melancholy, faux-documentary segments, where we learn what a superhero's day-to-day life is like. (Psst: Kinda crappy!)
It's all fine, even if the movie's a good half hour too long, and even if most of Big Man Japan's best subject matter is basically an unacknowledged riff on the past 45 years' worth of Spider-Man comics. But c'mon—where else are you gonna find a mopey fortysomething reflecting on his life's failures, bookended by building-smashing fights with monsters that look like pissed-off scrotums?