Pokémon the Movie: Diancie and the Cocoon of Destruction is the 17th movie in the Pokémon franchise. While it’s not one of the better movies in the series, it has its moments of visual spectacle and excitement and should still delight the series’ many fans. The big problem with this one is the sheer multiplicity of villainous factions, all trying to abduct the cute and diminutive Diancie, a jewel Pokémon princess from some underground kingdom. There are at least four factions after Diancie because of her budding ability to conjure diamonds out of thin air. The fact that her diamonds, initially at least, evaporate after a few minutes doesn’t seem to deter any of them. Even Team Rocket gets into the act, making for the biggest parts they’ve had in a Pokémon movie—probably ever!–and one of the few times they’ve been active villains in one of the movies.
Ash Ketchum and his friends (Serena, Bonnie and Clemont) become Diancie’s protectors after rescuing her from a multi-pronged abduction attempt in a remote European mountain town. The most enjoyable scenes come when they travel together and bond and have fun, including a trip on a cruise ship to a big city and a visit to a shopping mall where the girls (Serena and Bonnie) take Diancie to a clothing store and play dress-up. Soon after this, they enter Diancie’s underground kingdom where they learn that the heart diamond that powers the place is losing power and only Diancie can restore it, but only after her powers are enhanced by the mystical deer god Xerneas in the forbidden All-Earth Forest nearby. However, lurking in the forest is a formidable Pokémon menace, Yveltal, a giant bird monster that is laying dormant in the “Cocoon of Destruction.” Should it be awakened, all hell will break loose.
The action soon shifts to the forest and, as expected, the interventions of all the competing villains—Marilyn Flame, Ninja Riot, Argus Steel and Team Rocket—cause Yveltal to awaken and go berserk, shooting rays that turn everything they touch into stone. Only the intervention of Xerneas can save the day. It’s all very spectacular, but doesn’t make a lot of narrative sense. I wish there’d been more context provided and more proper build-up, as in last year’s Pokémon movie, GENESECT AND THE LEGEND AWAKENED, which set up the antagonists’ backstory in a timely and concise fashion. The existence of this massive, unexplored forest and underground Pokémon kingdom so close to a large metropolis is never explained. Couldn’t the writers have established its existence in a more remote locale first? It may seem like a minor point to the child audience, but in past Pokémon movies they always took great care to establish the more exotic settings in a more satisfying way. A lot happens in the final 15-to-20 minutes, but it was never terribly suspenseful. Which is too bad, because Diancie herself is a genuinely interesting new Pokémon protagonist and is one that can talk, albeit telepathically. Her scenes with Ash & company and her socialization process after being underground all her life are the best parts of the film and make one wish the action elements had been streamlined a bit. It all got overly complicated with the heart diamond, Yveltal, the All-Earth Forest and everything.
This movie is a spin-off of the newest season, “Pokémon the Series: XY,” which is now running on Cartoon Network and which introduced Ash’s newest set of traveling companions, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie. Serena is, to me, probably the most compatible female counterpart Ash has ever had. She admires and respects him and is always unfailingly supportive. She doesn’t compete with him but has her own set of talents and specialties that she indulges in when the opportunities arise. He should keep her around. When they get older…who knows? Clemont is a young scientific genius and Bonnie is his gregarious little sister, not the first little kid the series has had, but certainly the most endearing. They make a great team and I hope they’re all featured in the next movie as well.
Two years after the events of the Fourth Great Ninja War, the moon that Hagoromo Otsutsuki created long ago to seal away the Gedo Statue begins to descend towards the world, threatening to become a meteor that would destroy everything on impact. Amidst this crisis, a direct descendant of Kaguya Otsutsuki named Toneri Otsutsuki attempts to kidnap Hinata Hyuga but ends up abducting her younger sister Hanabi. Naruto and his allies now mount a rescue mission before finding themselves embroiled in a final battle to decide the fate of everything. The highly anticipated 10th Naruto film The Last Naruto: The Movie was finally released on 266 screens across Japan last Saturday on December 6. One of our readers, who goes by the name Kővárti Róbert was kind enough to treat us to a sit down (with popcorn in our laps) to the highly anticipated film. Half the crowd was in Naruto cosplay so I knew that when the lights dimmed and the movie started peoples emotions would be at risk. “They better get this one right”. Well, everyone, including Kővárti…The Last Naruto Movie is a perfect ending to the Naruto Saga. BUT, with that said, there are alot of issues I had…because it’s all about Hinata and that’s it! Where’s the real Naruto? Where is Sasuke? Where is the bonds between them? Where is the Sakura that was loved by Naruto? I think after such a long wait this is what people wanted to see.
Not long ago, the Naruto manga ended its 15-year run. However, readers were quick to notice there was one story left to tell. Thus comes The Last: Naruto the Movie—not an out-of-continuity side story but a true missing tale that answers the most important question left by the ending of the manga. We get to see Naruto’s life in his years between the end of the manga and the epilogue. Everything from the technical aspects such as the exquisite animation and magnificent music to the intricate story and character developments are wonderfully implemented in this perfectly paced finale. So people can relax on that front. The issues lay within the plot. Every thing got changed in the movie and now after fifteen long years we are told that Naruto never loved Sakura. The film itself begins with a chronological recap of the world of Naruto, starting with the Sage of the Six Paths and leading up to Naruto and Sasuke’s climactic final battle.
As a long time Naruto fan, this movie has a good ”ending” that leaves the door open for more and more adventures. As a whole, movie 10 is not for every typical Shonen fan, as most of all for its main focus: Love. Between the main character and the secondary yet essential character for this film; the development for Hinata—why she feels as she does for Naruto and how her love for him came to be—and Naruto having to reconcile his own feelings for her after discovering that she loves him, and discovering what is like to really Love someone. The part that I love more about his development is that Naruto is the powerful but still clumsy, naive, adorable ninja. The flip side, is that Naruto is about fights and action so there is more than a fair share of those in the film as well, and almost EVERY character you like has something to do in this film, despite the lack of time we see them, they give them something to do.
All in all, I’m surprised by how much I loved The Last: Naruto the Movie despite the swerve job I experienced in theaters. Unlike the other Naruto films I’ve seen, this one carries real weight as instead of a non-canonical one-off, it is a vital part of the story never before told in either the anime or manga. If you’ve ever wanted a Naruto real love story or wanted to see how the characters mature as adults, this film is definitely worth a watch. To conclude, tes, the villain is very over powered and interesting, but those weaknesses are overshadowed by what is basically a Naruto/Hinata character piece, and the beautiful animation and action scenes, that closes the door on one generation and sets the stage for the next one to come. This movie left me emotional, and the soundtrack is one of the best things of the film. If you are a true Naruto Fan you are going to enjoy the film, just check your reservations at the door and prepare for the feels!
The Crimson Bow and Arrow covers the first story arc of Attack on Titan. If some – well, all – of the footage looks familiar, it’s because the feature is a digest-sized version of the hit animated series and award-winning manga. Director Araki Tetsuro edited the feature – titled Attack on Titan Part One: Crimson Bow and Arrow – cutting down the first 13 episodes of the series for this installment, with the followup – subtitled Wings of Freedom – due out in 2015. For those of you not familiar with Attack on Titan, the anime – based on the manga by Hajime Isayama – takes place in a world under siege by massive Titans: nude, often mindless humanoid creatures that enjoy nothing more than snacking on the surviving human population which has hidden itself inside of walled-off cities. But after one of those walls fails, and Eren Jaeger suffers a terrible loss, our hotheaded protagonist vows to enlist in the military with the hope of killing every Titan he can find.
In the TV series, this arc takes 13 episodes, while the movie, tells the whole story in a mere 2 hours. The biggest gripe for me was while Leon’s backstory has been cut, all his scenes in Trost remain intact. Why would they cut the entire training arc? That seems like an odd decision to me. But, despite there being less overall development of the supporting cast, there is no resurrection for dead characters and all but a few characters seem safe. It is this deep connection to the characters and their plight that had me yelling for joy when they do mange to overcome the titans in some way. Every punch or slash means something and that’s sometimes hard to say about Japanese anime.
“Attack on Titan” hit’s the major points that make it deserving to be a hit. The world, the characters, and the serious threat of the titans keeps you glued into your seat. Every person in service is getting ready for the attack, because the advanced guard is dead. They are broken down into three groups: Vanguard, Middle Guard, and Rear Guard. This film is perfect for those who missed the series but want to dive into the world of the Titans. Don’t have time for the series? No problem. 5 hours condensed into 2. It tells the core story well, and these cuts serve to improve the pace of the film. Recommended!
As someone who grew up watching the original “Saint Seiya” anime, I found “Saint Seiya: Legend of Sanctuary” to be a mixed bag at best: The first half of the movie introduces the story and the main characters in a decent (albeit a bit rushed) manner, but during the second half (Specifically, after the Taurus House part), the plot turns muddled and hard to follow. Not as muddled as in movies like “Final Fantasy: Advent Children“, but I think that some scenes will confuse those viewers who never watched the original series.
The short duration of the movie is simply not enough to cover the 73 episodes of the Sanctuary Arc from the original anime, having too many characters which aren’t properly developed (Case in point: Pisces Aphrodite, who only appears in this movie to be killed off without doing anything relevant to the plot). Some moments lack of the same emotional impact that the original anime had due the rushed narrative (For example, the duel between Camus and Hyoga, which isn’t as memorable as in the 80’s series, since their whole master-disciple relationship is merely referenced, but not explored).
Visually speaking, the film is very impressive and well done, though I’m sure that the comparisons with the Final Fantasy games will be unavoidable.(Specially taking in consideration the transformation of the main villain near the end of the movie, which reminded me the final boss battles from those videogames) The soundtrack was decent, but in my opinion the soundtrack of the original series was far more memorable. While it was moderately entertaining to watch “Saint Seiya: Legend of Sanctuary” had the potential to be something much better. I wasn’t expecting a 100% faithful adaptation (That would have been impossible in such short time) but it could have been a far more memorable experience with its own merits instead of a merely watchable flick.
But worst of all was one of the characters subvert. He was originally a psychopathic killer and became sort of a carnivalesque version of Cap. jack Sparow. paradoxically singing in harmony with those who would represent the agony of the imprisoned souls of their victims as macabre props ..your necrophiliac house was turned into a Disney musical stage. Not to mention he was defeated effortlessly by a challenger. By any reference to the original story, it should be a dark character and provide a real challenge to be defeated. To quote one of the many holes in the script, the story cites the need to cross all the houses of the signs, but some are summarily ignored. In short, it’s a caricatured representation of what the anime represented over a very weak and careless script. The climax of the film is equally disappointing, contains all the clichés about confronting the grand final villain.
Tokyo is being terrorized by a sniper. The public thinks he’s killing people indiscriminately, but the Police and the FBI know better. They suspect an ex-SEAL named Timothy Hunter, but as the case goes on, who the real culprit is gets more and more obscured. Of course, Conan is on the case, this time aided by Sera, a relatively new character with a few secrets of her own. In this movie, Conan basically becomes a superhero. He does all these death-defying tricks, and somehow still doesn’t die. It’s slightly more realistic than say, Prince of Tennis, but then again, Prince of Tennis basically laughed at the laws of physics, so this isn’t saying much. I think that the normal anime series treats Conan’s physical capabilities better, because he is, essentially a teenager in a child’s body and thus has all the physical limitations of a child.
Overall, the movie was enjoyable but did not leave me completely satisfied. Perhaps this was because the whole time the story felt like a side story. The characters keep alluding to “them” (Black Organization) throughout the film and there are far too many characters that split up the story. It is hard to really know who the main character is, as Conan is often on the sideline and has all of his allies show up conveniently throughout the story. The main story is actually about who appear to be all-new characters altogether, though their motives and cheesy American accents do not fit in well with the veteran characters. All of this ended up making the film quite confusing. The mystery itself is not very exciting, though the action sequences and gadgetry were enjoyable. The art style is unique and a little reminiscent of Hanna-Barbera cartoons, something I do not see often in anime but was able to enjoy. The quality is not stellar, considering it is a movie, but passable.
The sound, on the other hand, was exhilarating during the action sequences. Conan’s skateboard skidding across pavement and bullets whizzing through the air were positively thrilling and edge-of-your-seat fun. Background music was not bad either. The characters introduced for the film were entertaining caricatures of Americans (something that also reminded me of old Hanna-Barbera cartoons), but ultimately none of the characterization really stuck with me. I liked Conan but he was rarely on screen, an opportunity I think the film missed out on. As I mentioned before, there were far too many characters in the film, and no one was able to stand out. While I enjoyed the film, the story and characters were not able to hold it up. What the film did do is get me interested in the character of Conan and the rest of the franchise. In this sense, I believe the film was quite successful. At first, I thought the movie would make some progress on the Black Organisation, but it turned out to have no relation to that. The only new information was about the identity of Subaru Okiya, and it more or less confirmed one of the fan theories I support!
Last year we dived into Hana-Saku Iroha Blossoms for Tomorrow which is the continuation of the heartwarming tale of Ohana’s life experiences at Kissuiso. When her mother runs off with her latest boyfriend, Ohana Matsumae is sent to live with her grandmother, who she has never met nor spoken to. Her grandmother is not pleased to find Ohana on her doorstep, and sets her to work at her Taisho-era (1920s) hot springs inn. A side-quel of sorts for the Hanasaku Iroha series, Home Sweet Home amounts to a Very Special Episode of that franchise, one stuck smack dab in the middle of the action, meaning that viewing of the original series is more or less mandatory both for the plot and the emotional connections. It’s billed as a movie but only clocks in at an hour, making it best for existing fans.
We often look at movie spin-offs as unnecessary, thoughtless, and maybe even a little bit greedy. Do we really need another addition to an already concluded story? Not usually. There’s an undeniable sense of indifference whenever we hear that a spin-off movie has been greenlit, and who can blame us when “movie” often simply means “bad adaptation with a couple new scenes”. Hanasaku Iroha: Home Sweet Home is not one of those movies, but do still keep your expectations in check before digging in. Picking up where the series left off, the movie portrays a sort-of aftermath of Ohana’s self-discovery; she now faces the question “What of it?”. Or at least, that’s my interpretation of it. HanaIro, in its core, has always been a growth story (taking from the title itself even, a story of blooming). Not so much a coming of age perse, but a finding of the self – Ohana knows that she she has to be “something”, but she just doesn’t know what. This movie is more of that really; rather a good half of it, as our flower here is still at the final stages of her blooming process. Seeing as that might not appeal to those who were disappointed with how the series played out, I’d like to think the other half of this movie pulls Ohana’s weight quite nicely – Satsuki’s half.
The movie itself surprisingly has this explosive energy. Most of this comes from Ohana especially in the beginning. Along with this energy brings forth welcoming humorous moments around the inn such as the priceless acting and food decorations. It might not be masterpiece or Oscar level but it can definitely bring forth a smile to anyone’s face. Similarly to its original series, the movie retains its slice of life format and tells it similar to a narrative. Only this time though, it also focuses on Ohana’s mother(Satsuki) with a little trip down memory lane.
In a way, Satsuki’s character isn’t very different from her daughter Ohana in the beginning. Both characters has a stubborn attitude and doesn’t seem to appreciate their lifestyles at first. Additionally, the both of them often clashes against other members of the inn at first becoming a talk around the house. Throughout the movie, a line of “I want to shine” echoes that seemingly symbolizes a chance to become something bigger in life for Satsuki. It’s written in text as well and becomes an important theme in growing up. Surprisingly enough, I can find this relatable. After all, everyone wants to grow out of their shells and challenge themselves to become something they never thought they’d become. For Satsuki, she is inspired to become a professional writer/editor. But if we look at life itself, there’s that sense of obstacle that can prevent dreams from coming true. Satsuki sees that obstacle as her residence at the inn because from her perspective, it prevents her from shining in the real world. The soundtrack is cherry and lighthearted. It brings forth a home-like atmosphere to the movie as everything feels right at home. Most of the VA does a terrific job with their role. Satsuki’s voice as her younger self is also depicted well with a mixture of arrogance, insecurity, but also inspiration.
Yes, the inspiration for this anime movie was a video game that was basically a “Street Fighter” clone that for me was not the most entertaining fighting game ever made. Here you have character from that game in a fight with a madman that is after the armor of mars, which of course makes its wearer very strong. During the course of the adventure you get to see the fighters display their various moves and even have an appearance by a character in a castle whose part in the movie makes him nearly pointless. You get to see two of the characters fall in love and you get a somewhat bittersweet ending. They do a bunch of moves to where they yell out their special attack which is sort of like a Dragonball Z show which also helped me enjoy this one more even though I was not particularly fond of the game. The character are rather interesting too, as they add much needed depth to the characters as opposed to just a bunch of dudes fighting in tournaments. So all in all a nice anime based on a not so nice video game.
The plot is about Terry Bogard falling in love with a girl named Sulia who’s brother is wrecking havoc all over the world searching for a suit of armor that will make him a God. Sounds like something from an Indiana Jones movie but it works well and there’s enough humor and pathos mixed in with all the mighty kicking-of-ass to keep others interested who do not like martial arts. Of course the story could be stronger with more developments but at 95 minutes you’ll be darned if you can find another animated movie or even live action that crams in so much adventure, color and light-hearted thrills into its running time. The fighting and animation are the draw and they work well. The action is fast and dazzling with a flow not seen in American films. The animation is detailed, not as much as Akira or Ghost in the Shell but very well done. I believe some of the graphics are made using the same technique as in Golgo 13, the Professional but I could be wrong.
The love scenes are hilariously overblown– the scene in which Sulia “heals” Terry is obviously intended to be a tender moment, but it’s virtually impossible to not be thrown into spirals of giddy laughter by the sheer ludicrousness of it. And of course, Fatal Fury is not without the obligatory cartoon T&A– this is supplied gratuitously by the huge-breasted Mai Shiranui. And since Fatal Fury IS based off the video game series of the same name (oh boy), we’re treated to numerous pointless cameo appearances by popular characters with little or no relevance to the plot whatsoever (they go through all the trouble of introducing Kim early on, only for him to disappear from the movie totally after that point). This mess of a movie reaches its climax with the unintentionally farcical final battle, in which all the main characters engage the all-powerful main villain in one-on-one combat in turn. That’s some thing that’s always amused me… even when battles in animes AREN’T taking place in a tournament, they always happen as if they were, regardless of the fact that it makes no sense whatsoever!
Otakus always rave about how anime movies should be treated as MOVIES as opposed to merely cartoons, and a disturbing portion of those same people love Fatal Fury. So would Fatal Fury have been good if it wasn’t an anime? The answer is an emphatic “no”– all of this movie’s charm, what little of it there is, resides in the actual drawings. Had Fatal Fury not been an anime, it would have been worthy of an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000, if the show was still on the air. That’s the key– this is nothing more than a laughably bad B-movie in the guise of an anime epic.
t’s nothing like Isao Takahata’s other works. This one is about an Alternate Viking/Scandinavian Time Period about a boy named Horus who receives a sword from some Earth God, and is sent on a quest to defeat an Ice Demon meets a group of village locals and a mysterious Girl who has the key to restoring peace to the land. However, as in most Isao Takahata animes the focus is not on the animation, but on the script. People battle against the forces of evil using their most powerful weapon: will power. Evil comes in the form of bad luck, misfortune, direct attacks and sneaky social manipulation. Good’s champion is a boy that has come to fulfill his dying father’s last wish. You can find love, betrayal, anger, violence, marital ceremonies, friendship, all the hallmarks of good Japanese anime.
While Disney were creating gimmicky films like The Sword In The Stone, Takahada filled his film with the truest essence of humanity, as Hols must not only fight The Frost King, but must also deal with peoples misconceptions, stubborn attitudes and discriminatory views. The Little Norse Prince is deeper than fighting shape changing witches and squirrel romances, and in its purity is so awe inspiring. It has the ability to turn you into a child again, and view it with the eyes of an innocent as he manages to remind us what is noble about humanity and what we sometimes lack in ourselves. The Little Norse Prince is by no means a classic in the grand sense of cinema, but has an undeniable ability to transport us to a time and space when the world seemed a better place and life was worth fighting for.
Takahada laid the foundations with The Little Norse Prince for some remarkable and simply brilliant films, and it is quite easy to see how he and Miyazaki (who was an animator on this production) found the inspiration to be able to take the essence of Norse Prince, elaborate and expand on the settings and morals. One of the notable aspects is how exceptionally refined the imagination of Takahada is, as this film just exudes originality and feels completely different and fresh next to its contemporaries, and indeed the same can be said of the more recent Ghibli films compared to talking fish and super hero families. The Little Norse Prince may not be the greatest anime ever created, but it certainly is true to itself and the messages it wishes to deliver us as an audience and can only be praised as an effective means of emotive story telling which can and does not only appeal to all ages, but speak to all ages.
Sadly the story doesn’t make fully sense. Some characters aren’t designed as well as they could have been. Especially the evil demon didn’t look impressive at all – not even slightly scary. Also the drawings lacked detail all together. But that is all understandable, since “Anime” has been in it’s children’s shoes. I don’t know why, but Isao Takahata movies are the emotionally most touching movies for me. Grave of the Fireflies has been the most extreme cinematic experience for me. I am almost crying remembering this movie. And it’s almost 10 years ago since I watched it the last time. Horus is different. It’s not a sad movie, like Grave of the Fireflies is. I’ts quite cheerful and optimistic. It’s one of the movies that is so warmhearted, that it makes you feel like a child again. The originality that The Little Norse Prince exudes is nothing short of impressive, as his anti-aging formula transports us back in time to makes us feel young and vulnerable. While it may not be the greatest anime of all time, it is nothing short of being the most important.
Following in the aftermath of a terrible Demon-Human war, turn of the century Japan is preparing a new fighting force in case the demons decide to return. A squadron of giant robots are built to be controlled by the spirit of the pilot, but it is discovered that the only people with sufficient spirit are young women. After recruiting a team of youths from around the world, the Japanese government decides to keep them a secret by disguising them as a theater troupe, thus requiring them to spend as much time memorizing Shakespeare as they do on military training. So, imagine a Buffy: the vampire Slayer type scenario with Wild Wild West technology set in Industrial Japan with the characters from ‘Allo ‘Allo and you get Sakura wars!
The animation of the OVA is so wonderfully done. It is simply the best that could have been made back in 1997. The OVA’s visuals are faithful to the games’ designs and will not outrage fans. The musical score is marvelous and adds mood and atmosphere in the anime. Fans of the game will even recognize that some of the music in the games are featured in the OVA. The Japanese voice acting is voiced by the same voice actors of the games and fans will be pleased that they sound just as good as they did in the games. The story is pretty well written and moves at a good pace.
Before you watch this OVA, I warn you that you must play the games. This OVA was designed as to capitalize on the popularity on the game and as supplemental plot material to the games.If you watch this OVA without playing the games, you will be scratching your head confused as you will see plot holes and lack of explanation behind the whole demon VS humans conflict of this OVA. In other words,you will not enjoy this OVA one bit if you haven’t played the games and decided to watch it right away.
Anime adaptions of games almost always suck and 99 % of the time are not even faithful to the plots and designs of the games they are based on.Sakura Wars is an excellent exception to this. The makers actually bothered to put big productions in this OVA and hire the people who made the game for assistance.Simply, you will completely love this if you are a Sakura Wars fan!