Part 1: Beginnings and Part 2: The Eternal Story
A few weeks ago, I went to see the film adaptation of the Puella Magi Madoka Magica anime, which was a big hit due to the popularity of the series when it was first release. The anime takes the classic magic girl archetypes and adds a darker twist to it, making the story immensely well received among anime fans.
The movie was split into two parts and previewed one night in two consecutive weeks only at certain theatres from where I lived. Labelled a foreign film, I was not even allowed to use my movie pass! And you could almost be certain that the handful of people in the audience (mostly university students), were anime fans.
I’ll try not to spoil anything in my review below.
Madoka Kaname is a regular middle-school girl who hears a cry for help from the magical creature (or cat-like alien) called Kyubey. Upon saving the creature’s life, she and her friend Sayaka Miki stumble into a dark and twisting world. Girls, who have had their wish granted by Kyubey, are granted magical powers and obligated to fight “witches,” evil entities that spread disaster and despair. Soon after, Madoka and other magic girls find themselves caught in a web of deceit and destiny as they realize that begin a magic girl is not all frills and tassels.
Review: 4/5 happy clouds
Overall this movie is a great retelling of the original anime. I thoroughly enjoyed the music inserts, not only showing anime’s opening: Connect by ClariS and dynamic orchestral score but also an additional music video of the song Luminous also by ClariS. Part one summarizes the first half of the series up to around episode six or seven and cuts out the slow-paced snippets that seem to drag on through the first half of the anime. The second half of the series picks up at a pivotal part of the story and wraps up its loose ends. What I enjoyed about the second part of the film were the additional scenes that clarified more of the concepts of Kyubey and magic girls. Because the film was officially released, translations of the Japanese script were definitely on par.
BEWARE SPOILERS BELOW
If you haven’t seen the Puella Magi Madoka Magica series, the movie is a great place to start. You’ll be done the series in around four hours. However, one significant detail that I felt should not have been cut from the movie was the flashback of Mami Tomoe’s back story which I thought greatly contributed to the development of her character before she dies after a few episodes into the anime.
A bonus from seeing the movie in a theatre was that upon entering the theatre room, we came upon Magic Girl Contracts on our seats!
If you have seen the series and are looking to see the movie, I’m sure it will be up for online viewing or download very soon. Overall, Puella Magi Madoka Magica dramatically raises the bar in the magic girl genre. It has been a while since and will be a long while until such a unique and thought-provoking magic girl anime emerges. Also, if you enjoyed the series or movie, check out the manga, it was adapted from the anime and is only a short three volumes making for a short but excellent read.
Hope this review was helpful! Comment below on what you think!
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