They’re the best Anime that 2013 has to offer! We counts down the best anime to come out this year, including the likes of Little Witch Academia, Saint☆Oniisan (Movie), Hanasaku Iroha Movie: Home Sweet Home, and more!
5: Little Witch Academia
MAL Score: 7.82
For young witches everywhere, the world-renowned witch Shiny Chariot reigns as the most revered and celebrated role model. But as the girls age, so do their opinions of her—now just the mention of Chariot would get a witch labeled a child. However, undeterred in her blind admiration for Chariot, ordinary girl Atsuko Kagari enrolls into Luna Nova Magical Academy, hoping to someday become just as mesmerizing as her idol.
However, the witch academy isn’t all the fun and games Atsuko thought it would be: boring lectures, strict teachers, and students who mock Chariot plague the campus. Coupled with her own ineptness in magic, she’s seen as little more than a rebel student. But when a chance finally presents itself to prove herself to her peers and teachers, she takes it, and now it’s up to her to stop a rampaging dragon before it flattens the entire academy.
Aside from Ryo, which I can’t seem to find anywhere (if you happen to know a site, a link would be very helpful), I’ve seen all of the Anime Mirai 2013 films. All 4 are about half-an-hour long, so they’re pretty concise with their story. Death Billiards is pretty good, but it feels a bit pretentious, shoving a little philosophical question down your throat but not really making you think that much. Arve Rezzle feels like the pilot to a full series, and as such offers very little closure, but it has some nice ideas, even if those are undermined slightly by some rather half-baked characterisation and poorly executed exposition.
I’m giving my little mini reviews to the other episodes simply to give my review of Little Witch Academia some context. As someone with a rather cold demeanour, and who typically enjoys a dark thriller or gore-heavy action series, it may come across as somewhat surprising when I say that LWA is my favourite of the three. It’s almost Disney-esque, with genuinely loveable and quirky characters, a strong and functional, if not particularly complex, story and a completely uplifting tone. The humour is solid and hits you enough to make even the most stoic individual smile a bit. The animation is brilliant, with the art differing just enough from the conventions of the Japanese style to make me completely fall in love with it. Voice-acting is probably my primary gripe, but it’s not so bad that it distracts from the episode. It’s fun, and reminds me of why I need to be less tolerant of those angsty action-thrillers like Arve Rezzle that seem to make up the meat of today’s anime industry.
LWA is like Shrek. Far from being childish, this little gem is fun for everyone (though it doesn’t share Shrek’s gleeful love for sexual innuendo). Even if, like me, you’ve grown into an emotionally-jaded, highly critical badass, you may just find that Little Witch Academia has enough substance and upbeat tone to penetrate your doughy cynicism and really cheer you up.
I would genuinely rather they made a full series of this than Arve Rezzle.
Actually, Little Witch Academia caught me by surprise. I didn’t know Studio Trigger had something like that in stock and after I found out about this little gem I almost instantly decided to download it and oh boy was that a fine decision.
Reminder: This review will be spoiler free and I will refrain from going too deep into happenings and just summarize it really, really quickly. We have the main heroine Akko Kagari. As a child she was attending a magic show featuring the witch Shiny Chariot who has become an idol for Akko. Even though she is not born into a magic family she attends the name giving magic school and is friends with Sucy and Lotte.
Let’s split up this review into the five categories as usual:
There really isn’t much I can say about a one episode anime with 25 minutes without coming up with a summary or spoilers. So let’s just say that Little Witch Academia features a coherent plot. It features a look in the past of the main character and her motivations, parts of the everyday life at the academy and the interactions between multiple different characters. It’s just one episode but felt concluded and not rushed by any means.
Since it has been Studio Trigger working on this it has this certain touch you instantly get out of it if you have watched Kill la Kill before. In general the backgrounds are very nice to look at, the animation is fluid, lightning looks gorgeous and the character models are full of variety in looks and facial animations. There is nothing to complain about here.
As it is a single episode anime yet I would have never thought so much effort has been pumped into the soundtrack. It was outstanding and had a broad variety of different tunes to set the mood. I really loved that it consisted mostly of orchestral music. It just fitted so well.
Another part worth mentioning in the “Sound”-category is the voice acting. Trigger got really, really talented people on board for Little Witch Academia and it was a pure pleasure listening to them.
For a one-piece show they had a pretty adorable and varying cast reaching from the arrogant but talented witch with her two friends and the goofy main character as well as her sidekicks which would be a clumsy glasses girl and the superficially more introverted girl with the not-so-obvious but kickass abilities. All in all a very good cast of likeable characters.
I can’t remember when it was the last time 25 minutes felt that short. It was over in almost an instant and had no dull moments. It was funny, suspenseful and full of quality. Pure entertainment!
A very good anime. It is nice to see that projects like Little Witch Academia are such a success (600.000 clicks on YouTube according to Trigger). Also the second episode has been an insane hit on Kickstarter, fulfilling the 150.000$ mark in just one day. I can’t wait for more.
It was fun all along. You shouldn’t miss out on this enchanting tale! It’s worth your very time and appreciation.
*) Score is not an average
Instead of writing an essay about this i’m going to create a list of Positives and Negatives, I know when you’re just looking to see if an anime is worth watching you usually don’t want to read all that much.
– A short story which leaves room for expansion yet ties up the major loose ends and sticks to a three act structure incredibly well.
– The characters are all very different from each other, none are stereotypical archetypes and each are likeable in their own way.
– The soundtrack is not something I noticed too much, but it was enough to create the correct atmosphere for the scenario’s.
– The animation, I feel like this really needs to be stressed, by god the animation is amazing, everything is so smooth I think this might be the smoothest and most consistent animation i’ve ever seen.
– Hard to think of many.
– The soundtrack wasn’t extremely memorable, hardly much of a negative.
Like I said, it’s very difficult for me personally to find faults in Little Witch Academia, I would recommend this to almost anyone and am certainly looking forward to the future of this project.
4: Saint☆Oniisan (Movie)
English: Saint☆Young Men (Movie)
MAL Score: 7.83
After thousands of years of hard work, Jesus Christ and Gautama Buddha decide that they have earned a vacation and descend from the heavens to rent a small apartment in Tokyo, Japan. As the pair struggles to live incognito, they enjoy the luxuries of modern society, such as amusement parks, and limited-time store sales. Jesus and Buddha take the time to celebrate each other’s holidays, watch the changing of the seasons, and explore their new surroundings. Saint☆Oniisan follows the two religious figures as they meet new people and face the everyday challenges that come with living in Tokyo.
This anime shows a very candid look at how people of different faiths can come together and treat each other well without conflict in these turbulent modern times, and will likewise instill good morals upon the viewer regardless of their own religion. By showing how the founders of these religions themselves might act in these situations this anime sets a very good example not only for Christians and Buddhists but also for people of other faiths who were simply interested in a funny anime.
The story is simple and fragmented but compelling and very charming- it shows the everyday life of two young men who happen to be revered religious figures as they explore Japanese culture on their vacation. The plot itself is very laid-back and will not get anybody thinking particularly hard, but it serves it’s purpose of bringing up interesting ideas that will cause one to ponder their relationship with their own beliefs.
The animation is very pretty, despite the quality being no higher than any other movie. It is stylized just enough to give itself a unique look but not enough to seem complicated or alien to the viewer, invoking the welcoming yet imposing feel of a religious institution. In this way there has actually been a lot more thought and work put into the animation than one might first assume upon glancing at it.
The soundtrack I have to say, while not being disappointing in the least, was not a part I was particularly impressed with. It does well for a slice-of-life anime but fails to inspire as much interest as the rest of the film. I have to say it was really just “there” and was not really memorable, but it did very well match the mood of the scenes and I would not say it was bad at all.
The characters are ones just about everybody in the world are familiar with, and from my knowledge of religious doctrine they seem to be portrayed very well. It is a difficult task to imagine what these individuals from eras long past may have acted like in the modern age but it has been done very well here.
All in all I enjoyed this anime very much and I would highly recommend it to other people regardless of their religious and spiritual background. It teaches some important lessons about life, and even if one is not interested in such this is a very nice slice-of-life anime.
Jesus and Buddha — the actual beings themselves — decide to take an extended vacation on earth, with their tourist destination being (“Exotic!”) Japan. The result is this slice of life comedy that is miraculously charming and inoffensive. The movie doesn’t have a clear storyline, but consists of vignettes of their vacation in a town where the neighbourhood kids are bratty, the local yakuza can be ridiculous and where the people somehow never catch on that the two “foreigners” in their midst are REALLY foreign.
As a comedy, it does a fine job using observational humour and recurring gags as its base. Some of the best jokes come from contextualising the sacred in modern secularity, though it never actually takes critical jabs. It’s not quite satire; it has absolutely no criticism or intellectual examination of the figures represented or the related religions. It’s as gentle as a comedy about fictionalising deities can go, but that’s not a bad thing. After all, it’s hilariously sweet that Jesus, for instance, relates some his miracles as merely a form of personal convenience or plain old accident.
There’s no conversation or commentary about faith in this anime, so if you’re expecting this to be a hard bash toward or a reaffirmation of any kind of belief, then you’re not going to get that. It does well steering clear of that, and the most political it gets is revealing that mortal bureaucracy is bad enough that even the Enlightened One himself isn’t allowed to ring a bell in a shrine because he’s “not staff”.
While it’s no laugh-a-minute affair, there are good chuckles to be had and it’s a worthwhile hour and a half. It helps a lot that Jesus and Buddha have good chemistry. They make excellent room-mates and are a fine duo. Plus it’s nice to see an anime using supportive, gentle comedy instead of insulting or abusive humour to get a smile out of the audience. So what it lacks in hard-hitting comedy, it makes up for with its charming lead characters, both of whom (despite their differences) are kind, accommodating, respectful and attentive to one another. Hey, wait a minute.
Everything about this anime feels simple, but gives off this warm feeling of awesome. The art, with the two main characters drawn differently from the rest, the story with its small twists and turns through Japanese life, and the way it so casually plays with symbols of two major religions – all of this is simply bound to make you smile.
I don’t think anyone can really be offended by this; instead, I think this is a wonderful way to bring people of different faiths together and provoke deep thoughts about one’s own beliefs.
3: Hanasaku Iroha Movie: Home Sweet Home
English: Hanasaku Iroha the Movie: Home Sweet Home
Japanese: 劇場版 花咲くいろは HOME SWEET HOME
MAL Score: 7.87
Ohana Matsumae has been working at Kissui Inn as a waitress for a while now. However, she realizes that she is starting to lose her desire to sparkle, having grown accustomed to the routines of her job. As this was a desire she had when she first moved to the inn, the realization bothers her. While having Yuina Wakura—Ohana’s classmate, friend, and the daughter of rival Fukuya Inn’s owner—under her as an apprentice, Ohana stumbles upon some old archives that mention her mother, Satsuki. Ohana does not know much about her mother, but these archives could shed some light on her past.
Besides learning more about her mother, it is business as usual at Kissui Inn—though with a couple of challenges to test Ohana and the staff of the inn.
Hanasaku Iroha: Home Sweet Home is not one of those movies, but do still keep your expectations in check before digging in. Most of what was frustrating about the main series remains here.
Taking place somewhere in the time-frame of the TV series (no indication is really given as to when), Home Sweet Home decides to show us a little bit more of an oft neglected character: Ohana’s mother, Satsuki. While cleaning one of the inn’s storage rooms, Ohana happens upon a set of diaries from her mother, telling the story of Satsuki’s rebellious teenage years to the birth of Ohana. We see in greatest detail how Satsuki met Ohana’s father, but the message is never in the story itself – it’s how it relates to Ohana’s own struggles. Like mother, like daughter, or so they say.
There’s an inherent sense of maturity to Home Sweet Home that was not present in the TV series. We see the beauty of childbirth (reminiscent of Mamoru Hosoda’s “Wolf Children”) and the toils of an adolescent girl trying to find adulthood in a world alien to her. Growing up has always been the central theme of the series, but the movie achieves it with much more clarity than the TV series. Few stories evolve the conflict beyond existential angst and into parenthood. There is a reason for us to care this time, and there is finally a message to be drawn by the end of the story, unlike the ambiguous “Huuuh?” of before.
Being a product of P.A. Works, of course, it is impeded by melodrama. Plenty of screaming, crying, and more screaming for your hearing pleasure. Why do they always do this? Home Sweet Home is a better story than that. I understand that it is mainly a story about teenage girls, but come on, you can convey emotion through thoughtful dialogue instead of this nonsense. It doesn’t always have to be two characters screaming at each other. It’s a shame that an otherwise intelligent story had to be bogged down this way.
The biggest problem however is that Satsuki’s story only takes up about one-third of the overall story. Ohana, Minko and the rest of the inn are often given the spotlight instead for whatever reason. This naturally creates issues when the runtime of the movie is just 60 minutes. Large sequences of time are skipped by in a flash, numerous questions are left unanswered, and we never do fully understand the relationship between Satsuki and Ohana’s father. Why does she fall in love with him so quickly? And why is an adult like him even interested in a highschooler suffering from a severe case of teen angst? Who really knows. Maybe we could have if the movie didn’t spend its time on irrelevant subplots.
I just have to wonder, why? Ohana and the rest of the inn already had plenty of focus in the main series. It’s merely a repetition of what we have already seen. The worst offender is the Nako subplot, based on her issues at home and relationship with her siblings. One of her sisters runs away at random, generating us ten minutes of the inn screaming and searching for her, only to end with the tired message of “Nako is mature”. The audience knows that already. It is verbatim. Why not show us something new about the character, or instead spend that time developing the relationship between Satsuki and Ohana’s father? There was plenty of potential here for something great and in the end it is pushed aside for the familiar.
The audio-visual quality fares much better. Even when it’s only “pretty good” by Hanasaku Iroha standards, it still looks better than many animated films released these days. The lighting and reflections are the art’s greatest asset as they often have the ability to enhance the story itself (one particular scene has Satsuki’s confused face mirrored in the bus that her love interest is leaving in). The animation is merely serviceable, however, and distant shots will often have the characters drawn without a face. This laziness feels especially out of place when contrasted with the beautiful backgrounds.
As for the sound, while I can’t imagine there will be anything to stand out in anyone’s memory, there is a certain beauty to the background music when one listens closely. There’s a subtle sense of melancholy to each piece, never relying on loud, sappy music to make the audience feel something. It makes the quieter moments all the more powerful, and these quiet moments are unequivocally the strongest piece of the experience.
At the end of the day, is Home Sweet Home worth your time? Certainly. If you had problems with the TV series, there is nothing here to change your mind in any significant way (there may just be more melodrama than before), but at only 60 minutes long it’s hard to go wrong with more Hanasaku Iroha. It’s just unfortunate that P.A. Works decided to play it safe for the fans instead of trying for more. Is that so much to ask for? I don’t believe so.
From P.A. Works’ original animated series that debuted in 2011 known as Hanasaku Iroha comes forth a new movie. P.A. Works is well known for many of the original works such as Tari Tari, Angel Beats, and recently Nagi no Asukara. What they’re less known for is perhaps their involvement in the film industry. Of course, adapting a slice of life story is never easy. The expectations of a movie usually involves a detailed storyline with engaging characters. With a movie running for roughly 60 minutes, it might look intimating to achieve such expectations. However, I am grateful to say that Hanasaku Iroha: Home Sweet Home has reached that level of expectation.
For starters, the movie stands out as a side-story of the original series, Hanasaku Iroha. However, I do recommend viewers coming fresh into the franchise to watch the original series to gain a better understanding of the characters, settings, themes, and the overall style of P.A. Works’ slice of life presentation. As a slice of life, Hanasaku Iroha shines in its character interactions and dynamics rather than a powerful storyline. Ohana Matsume returns as the main character in this movie as she is still a resident of the hot springs inn that her grandmother manages. What originally started as a girl with little interest for those around her life now emerges a confident young woman with an appreciation of her new lifestyle. She’s not the only character making her return though. Fans should also be thankful that most of the original characters make their returns including Minko, Nako, Tarou, Takako, Enishi, Wakura, Tohru, and of course the master of the inn, Sui Shijima.
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 movie also focuses itself on character relationships. For Satsuki, it brings out her character in different ways of expressions including anger, sadness, regret, but also joy. However, her character does seem to rush a bit much in terms of development. It’s hard to take her maturity in a serious perspective as her actions speaks louder than her aggressive words. These actions are also usually performed out of carelessness with some regrets. Satsuki’s dream also somewhat reflects on her mother as they both chased after a different dream but similar reasons; like mother, like daughter.
Although the movie focuses a lot on memories, other characters do make some moments in particular Minko. Her admiration for her superior Tohru is still easily noticeable as she wants to impress him with her cooking skills. Nako’s highlight in the movie details her insecurity regarding her friends and family. What’s important here though is that these character interactions can be reflected on how friendship and guardianship can play such a big part in our lives. Without family or friends, a home wouldn’t be sweet in any sense.
If drama was a major idea in this movie, then I’d say there’s too much of it. At times, it seems to be forced with the emotions and tears running down. Satsuki is just one such example but some of the other characters’ drama seems to be forced out of their shells as well. It doesn’t help by the fact that these drama doesn’t tie in with relationship progression. Yes, the lack of relationship progression for some of the main characters doesn’t seem to hit anywhere near home. There’s also bits of fan service out of nowhere that can be distracting. Furthermore, the absence of a main supporting character from the original series is hardly memorable from this movie. Memories are captured by the lens of a camera but some of them zooms by like flying rice.
Once again, P.A. Works shows the world their talent in artistic visuals. The animation of this movie is outstanding with rich artwork. The character designs all seems natural. It’s refreshing to see what Satsuki looked like as a young girl to what she looks like later on. It creates that atmosphere for viewers to see how much she has changed over the years. The inn itself is also designed to look exactly how it should be with its traditional designs.
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.
Photo albums contains memories.
Memories are created from experiences.
Experiences are bought forth from friends and family. Hanasaku Iroha: Home Sweet Home is a movie that serves as a primary example of how to live through life. There are obstacles but at the same time, there is also hope and prosperity. I don’t know how many of you reading this once and awhile looked back to your photo albums. But if you do, you’ll probably feel the nostalgia of walking down a memory lane that feels like home sweet home.
My expectation wasn’t very high; I knew that the movie duration wasn’t too long (66 min), and I knew that the story wasn’t a simple continuation from the last episode of the TV series. I thought if it was mildly entertaining that would be enough.
I was wrong.
Animation art direction was P.A. Works at its best. It captures well the good scenes from Yunosagi (largely based on the real Yuwaku Onsen town).
The story was surprisingly good and actually quite emotionally moving; never thought it could be that good. Music was the familiar Hana-Iro touching soundtrack with a new ending song by nano.RIPE (I like the crude-but-charming vocal; at least she has originality). All the main characters have their fair share of appearances except for Ko-chan (but he’ll be Ohana’s boyfriend in the end, as we all know).
It’s a great fan-service for sure but this movie was much more than that.
It’s a story of family (hint: the heroine’s name).
I am also a fan of K-On! Series and loved its Movie. Perhaps as a work of pop art though, the Movie of Hanasaku Iroha might be better overall. If you liked the series, there is no way that you’ll be very disappointed.
Well done P.A. Works. Well done.
2: Lupin III vs. Detective Conan: The Movie
Japanese: ルパン三世vs.名探偵コナン THE MOVIE
MAL Score: 7.89
It is a cross over between the series Lupin III and Detective Conan and takes place after the television special Lupin the 3rd vs Detective Conan. The plot follows Conan Edogawa who sets out to apprehend Arsène Lupin III, the suspect of stealing a jewel called Cherry Sapphire.
STORY: This movie is a direct sequel to the popular Lupin vs. Conan special from 2012. In case you didn’t see it, don’t worry, this movie has a summary clip in the closing credits. The series will also make you do a double take a few times as it gives tongue in cheek references to Conan characters and more Lupin references (like the Fujiko series and the Gold of Babylon movie) than Green vs. Red.
CHARACTER: Zenigata is given more lines and more personality in this special, but it seems forced. Still, the differences detracted slightly from the movie. Zenigata also has a very pointed line (I really don’t know how to word that without giving it away) that seems like it’s there for different types of fans. I’m interested to see how they’ll translate it when the movie is dubbed. The more I think about it, maybe Zenigata’s personality is changed due to the fact that he has a competent partner (a Conan character) in the movie?
As for other characters! Conan and Jigen play off the relationship they had in the first special, and it works out hilariously well. Because Conan can arguably be meant for a younger audience, Jigen and Goemon are less gritty and Fujiko isn’t as sexualized. I got a kick out of the Conan kids and how they all worked with the Lupin gang. I thought that with such a large cast it might feel forced, but it didn’t at all.
The only issue was the “flavor of the week” characters, whose problems I found myself glossing over heavily. The movie does not make you care about them at all, which I think is the problem: the first special was about Lupin and Conan while this one was about Lupin, Conan, and a third party.
ART: You have to understand that these are two different styles of animation. However, the Lupin franchise has done a great job over the years mixing in other styles with their own.
A problem with mixing styles that are so different is that they don’t play well together. For example, every time the Conan characters have a scene where they’re shown from the side (profile), I couldn’t get over the elongated face, almost like an animal’s muzzle, and sharply upturned nose. It’s easy to move into that world of animation while watching Conan, but when it mixes with the old, long legged Lupin characters grates on the senses. Lupin’s characters are long limbed and gritty detailed. Putting these two in the same scenes together doesn’t work fantastically. For instance, one of Conan’s characters has big, blue eyes. She’s talking to Zenigata who does his bow legged walk out of the room. Then the Conan characters are shown from the side and look almost inhuman. So you’re left with a dissonance in which you have to force yourself to believe this is the same anime universe.
SOUND: The usual Lupin and Conan cast sounds great! Only problem (to me) is that in an effort to merge the two, they limit the amount of jazz that Lupin fans might be used to hearing.
ENJOYMENT: Very enjoyable! Lupin and his gang over the years have gotten more family friendly and this definitely falls in that vein. I’d describe it as fluffier than many Disney movies. But hey, you want gritty? Go watch the Fujiko series and Jigen movie…
While distinct from the prequel, watchers are advised to view it or they might otherwise miss out on certain parts. The sheer number of characters in both series allows little screen time for the side characters, but you will definitely have your fill of the protagonists. I look forward to more crossovers between the two series.
1: Gintama Movie 2: Kanketsu-hen – Yorozuya yo Eien Nare
Japanese: 劇場版 銀魂 完結篇 万事屋よ永遠なれ
MAL Score: 8.94
When Gintoki apprehends a movie pirate at a premiere, he checks the camera’s footage and finds himself transported to a bleak, post-apocalyptic version of Edo, where a mysterious epidemic called the “White Plague” has ravished the world’s population. It turns out that the movie pirate wasn’t a pirate after all—it was an android time machine, and Gintoki has been hurtled five years into the future! Shinpachi and Kagura, his Yorozuya cohorts, have had a falling out and are now battle-hardened solo vigilantes and he himself has been missing for years, disappearing without a trace after scribbling a strange message in his journal.
Setting out in the disguise given to him by the android time machine, Gintoki haphazardly reunites the Yorozuya team to investigate the White Plague, and soon discovers that the key to saving the future lies in the darkness of his own past. Determined to confront a powerful foe, he makes an important discovery—with a ragtag band of friends and allies at his side, he doesn’t have to fight alone.
I haven’t actually finished the series but I did get to see the movie in theaters. It was simply amazing! I won’t give anything away but you get the typical Gintama goodness!
The story is pretty great. Gintama’s jokes are amazing and the way the story was set up was pretty original! The beginning threw me off but, Gintama always does that, to be honest.
The characters were SIMPLY FANTASTIC! The facial expressions and reactions were awesome and I, along with the theater, were laughing to death because of it. Seriously, great design, expressions, outfits, etc.
The audio was GENIUS! Spyair was awesome as always and the music was incredible. Some familiar music was played and the movie’s original and the battle, humor, etc sounds were great.
Enjoyment is 18798370984273984 out of 10. You can’t beat this. I watched the One Piece and Dragon Ball Z movies and Gintama greatly kicked them in enjoyment. I haven’t laughed so hard in forever.
Even if you haven’t watched Gintama, watch the movie because then you’ll REALLY wanna watch the anime. Got a few of my friends into Gintama now and they’ve never seen it before but changed their minds thanks to the movie.
The movie begins a bit slow at start and this is due to the “Movie Thief” character. While Odd Jobs are working in a theater for some money, the Movie Thief himself starts doing the obvious; filming illegally. As the long discussion goes with Gin and the Movie Thief about right and wrong, the producers decide to add in some jokes for the viewers to enjoy, by putting tons of laughs into it for the viewers. Is that all this Movie Thief is though? Is he just there to film illegally? Or maybe his role is more significant than we may think. But I thought this movie was about his past, not them working at a theater… Guess you’ll just have to watch!
One would think that the way the producers would portray this movie is by showing his past… Well of course they’re going to show his past, but the producers decide to use a theme we’re all used to seeing now, and that is “Time-travel.” To be honest, I was a bit surprised by seeing this, since I just recently watched the Steins;Gate movie and didn’t think that Gintama would also use this type of theme. Though, as we all know, time-travel is a commonly seen thing in shows and that of movies. Some could say that the movie is pretty predictable, but that’s for you to decide; I didn’t think it was.
The one thing I could say that I was disappointed by was the fact that there was little to no development on the future selves. All we know is that the characters have grown in these past 5 years and that Shinpachi looks nowhere close to his younger self. And Kagura, well… She’s grown in places that count to say the least. All that’s known is that Odd Jobs is no longer a group of people, but split into two groups. Odd Jobs Fumiya and the other Odd Jobs Takamoku. Wait, what happened to Gin, the leader? Well… to be frank, he’s missing.
Gintama has always been great for their soundtrack, and they even used some from the series. You can especially expect some great OST during the shounen type scenes later on in the movie. Though, that’s all I can really say about the OST because there’s nothing to really complain about and nothing to say vastly amazing about, but it still does the job at providing some great sounds for us, the viewers
The art has been vastly improved as expected for a movie. I wish it could be like this in the T.V series as well because the fights are animated better, clearer and more colorful to watch when seen in better quality. Character designs as I’ve talked a little about have been changed for a few as well. Shinsengumi is no longer the police force anymore really, but almost something like the Joui rebels themselves, though not necessarily identical. The producers decided to poke at some of the characters too, by making fun of them; Catherine mainly, who prioritizes in mainly making the viewer’s think of her as the troll character of Gintama. Elizabeth’s appearance changed drastically… One could say he’s all muscle now.
The movie, Gintama: The Final Chapter – Be Forever Yorozuya is definitely something a fan of the T.V series should watch. As for myself, I’m always excited for more Gintama and still await the T.V series to return for me to enjoy some good laughs, action packed scenes and just overall enjoyment that is Gintama. Everyone who has watched the T.V series knows that all we’ve seen about Gin’s past was little flashbacks during the war. So shouldn’t we be seeing more of the war? Well no, if they did that the film would be shorter than a 3 episode long series. This was the best way to do things IMO, and the producers did it pretty damn good. Overall, the film gives tons of laughs throughout it, but kind of lacked in the action packed scenes. Though one could argue that Gintama isn’t your typical shounen and that action isn’t everything, which is correct because Gintama does what it does best and that is making you laugh.
The story opens up with the Yorozuya three and Sadaharu in a movie theatre working part-time to grab some cash. Through a series of surprisingly refreshing and funny fourth-wall jokes, Gin and a new and hilarious character, the Movie Thief, end up travelling forward in time by five years. Here Gin learns the true identity of the Movie Thief and discovers that the world has been drastically altered and many people on Earth have died. To make matters worse, Yorozuya has disbanded and in this world Gin is missing and the Gin from five years ago must try and restore the world.
The story, which renews the most popular theme in contemporary anime, is about time traveling. If you’ve seen one anime about time traveling, whether it be Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya or Steins;Gate, you’ve seen them all. What these stories have in common is using time-travel as a plot-device to provoke a sense of regret and gratefulness out of our otherwise complacent main characters. This concept strings pretty far back in the medium and unless the story is presented in an innovative manner the plot device of time travel is incredibly predictable. Time travel can no longer exist as the sole concept in a work. In Steins;Gate it was a character study on the stress of an individual undergoing intense trauma, and in Disappearance it was the deliberation between being safe or being in love. In both stories the main characters support the work. Here time travel is sadly used as a way to advance a very generic story in a setting that was created to provide the Gintama fanbase with some fun character designs.
While the story is predictable it still is entertaining to any shounen fan. All our favorite Gintama characters appear, and the jokes ultimately keep flowing. But we don’t get to see the characters from the main series develop into their new character designs, we just see how they’ve changed in five years. It’s a bit disappointing coming from a series that often pays meticulous care to even the most trivial character’s background. For a movie marketed as game-changing for the franchise, I can’t help but to feel a little swindled. It’s mostly just the same Gintama jokes from the show with less attention to story.
The ill-explained time travel really hurts the bombastic finale of the film and everything about the story felt simply too convenient. While the movie is presented as a mystery Gin does almost none of the footwork to figure out about the world around him or how to fix it. The events of the movie occur jarringly fast. Plot points simply keep forcing themselves into scenes until finally you arrive at the final battle. It’s frustrating that the film is so linear and there is almost no despair to be felt in a world that was supposedly ravaged. Even as far as a Gintama arc would go, it is safe to say that this would be a very weak one. The story suffers from cliches, linearity, and unbelievable explanations to the point of boredom. The main Gintama series can do better than this story and it’s upsetting to see such little thought put into it.
The cast remains the same if not caricatured. Ultimately we learn nothing new about the cast of the entire series other than that Kagura five years in the future is stacked. There is no character development in this film, which you can expect from a side story, but there is also no new character relationships. The films characters are very static.
The soundtrack lifts nearly all songs from the main anime series and is of course very fitting because of this. Despite the contempt for innovation here the score still feels right. The animation looks vastly improved from the main series, though! Simply put, it is more fluid and provides a greater range of facial expression. The fight scenes are also animated very well, and provide for some exciting hack-and-slash entertainment. The character designs are great and should be lauded as well. The movie does a great job poking fun at some characters with the astute redesigns and pays attention to detail here with wardrobe subtleties. A fun example is Shinpachi is wearing Gin’s shirt and Kagura is wearing his robe as a skirt. If there’s an reason to see this movie it’s to see the older counterparts of each character.
Gintama Yorozuya yo Eien Nare is typical Gintama. It’s more Gintama. If you want more Gintama then watch this film. It’s nothing innovative, and it’s nothing you haven’t seen before. Some of the jokes are really funny, but mostly the films struggles with a convincing plot and frequently devolves into artificial sentimentality. I liked the film but was disappointed in it’s simplistic design, but I humbly hope Gintama returns to form with some more hotpot and Christmas episodes in April.
Did YOUR favorite anime make the cut? Let us know in the comments below!
1. Gintama Movie 2: Kanketsu-hen – Yorozuya yo Eien Nare
2. Lupin III vs. Detective Conan: The Movie
3. Hanasaku Iroha Movie: Home Sweet Home
4. Saint☆Oniisan (Movie)
5. Little Witch Academia